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  1. #1
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    What bivy/shelter do you use?

    A friend and I are going to be riding a portion of the continental divide in June and I'm trying to decide what to bring for shelter. I'm debating between a 1 man tent or a bivy. Do you have any recommendations? Brand? Thanks for the help-Nick

  2. #2
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    I like a 1 man tent without the tent body. just the fly and ground sheet. unless its going to be seriously buggy. i have a Eureka spitfire 1 for sale cheap if you are intersted.

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    Bivy bags, IMO, sucks for anything but sitting on a hacked out ice shelf high on an alpine peak. If it's buggy it is usually warm too, and zipping yourself into a barely breathable bag is pretty muggy. During prolonged rain one can only imagine the discomforts, even if the darn thing stays dry. That said, many people love them.

    For bikepacking, my current activity, a big sprawling homemade sil-nylon tarp works awesome. If the trip is during colder more rugged times I have a couple of ultra light tents, with the Stephenson Warmlite being my favorite.


  4. #4
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    I use a 1 man tent for solo trips. It's compact light [~1kg] and good for bugs.

    Big Agnes Fly Creek UL1

    https://www.bigagnes.com/Products/De...nt/FlyCreekUL1
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  6. #6
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    A lot of your questions may apply differently in your region than my own...

    But in Florida, its hot, humid, often rainy, and often incredibly buggy. So I preffer the idea of a tent that breaths, can keep the rain off, and keep the bugs out.

    Started out with a $50 cheapy 1 man tent from Bass Pro Shop.



    It didn't breath very well.

    Moved to a Eureka Solitaire



    It breathed very well, but its kind of a PITA to setup. I'm learning I want a free standing tent. I also broke a pole.



    So I recently bought a North Face Flint 1 man tent. I would prefer a side entry I think, but for the price, this seems to be just fine and suit all my other needs. I'll have some 1st use impressions after this weekend.




    I also use a hammock when its warm, bug net and rain fly included of course.

  7. #7
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    Thanks for all the advice. It looks like I'll be going with a 1 man tent. Probably a Big Agnes only because I can get it 30% below wholesale. Probably go with the Big Agnes Fly Creek UL

  8. #8
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    I use either a 1 person Hilleberg Unna (a bit heavy at 2,1kg) or a Hilleberg UL10 tarp at 700grams.


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    Quote Originally Posted by nicksstorm View Post
    Thanks for all the advice. It looks like I'll be going with a 1 man tent. Probably a Big Agnes only because I can get it 30% below wholesale. Probably go with the Big Agnes Fly Creek UL
    Good call. I also use the Fly Creek UL1 when I can't use a hammock, and it's a great tent. Not the most roomy though, so if possible I'd try one out before buying and see how you like the space in there. But that's going to be the case with any lightweight 1-man tent.

    I got mine used for a hundred bucks - probably the most value per dollar of any gear purchase I've ever made.
    www.julianbender.net

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  10. #10
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    Outside the bug season a simply bivy bag works great...


    ... and sometimes you don't even need an extra shelter.


    I've also occasionally used a tarp, but don't like it during the bug season.


    My absolute favorite is the Tarptent Double Rainbow, with which I replaced my Hilleberg Akto tent. The Double Rainbow is light enough (1.2 kg) and very big for one person and reasonable for two persons. It can take pretty hard weather...




    ... but can also be used as a bug shelter only with good views out.
    My bike blog: www.yetirides.com

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    As others have stated, it depends on what weather you expect and what time of year you will be using it. If you are planning on a 1 man tent like the Big Agnes, you may also consider a tarptent contrail. It is less expensive at $200 (depending on what discounted price you can get for the BA), weighs less and packs smaller than the BA (important matters for bikepacking).

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by FTC Rider View Post
    If you are planning on a 1 man tent like the Big Agnes, you may also consider a tarptent contrail. It is less expensive at $200 (depending on what discounted price you can get for the BA), weighs less and packs smaller than the BA (important matters for bikepacking).
    I owned a Tarptent for a season and found two main issues with it: 1) was not very stable in higher winds...I was able to keep it together, but the result was not a very pleasant night's sleep and 2) the one I had was single walled sil-nylon and in heavy rain I would end up quite damp inside...either from rain penetrating or because the force of the droplets caused any condensation on the inner surface to mist.

    It was a great shelter when conditions were mild, but I was not super confident in it for any unsettled weather.

    I sold it and got a 2 pers and 1 pers Big Agnes tents. I find the size and weight vs. the way they perform in challenging weather is a good balance. I'm using the "standard" BA ultralight tents. There is another level of lighter materials at a higher cost.

    I see Tarptent has quite a few more models now then when I had one.

    The cheapest Tarptents are $120 cheaper than the BA Fly Creek UL1 I have - assuming you pay MSRP for both. I buy my BA tents at REI during their coupon events so I save 20% or so off retail. Some solo Tarptent options are more expensive and heavier than the 1 pers BA tent.

    You'd need to do a careful comparison of the models in question to determine what was the best choice.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  13. #13
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    Vik, check out the updated Tarptent moment.

    Tarptent Ultralight Shelters

    I've pitched my contrail in rain and recently had it in overnight snow (everything was white at 2am but wet at 6am). Yes, you can get misting but I've never had it. Just the typical condensation and droplets caused by touching the interior surface.

    Those BA tents look petty nice. Will consider that for family adventures along with a mid style tent.

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    My experience with tarptents is limited to the Contrail (bought in 2012 so I don't know if earlier versions had any problems and don't know about other tarptent models). However, my experience has been very good with the Contrail. No problems with rain or wind (just make sure it is well staked, like all tents, including the sides). You must also seam seal it before you use it to make sure it is water proof (only takes 5-10 minutes). Since it is a single wall, you can't touch the tent wall or it will leak at that point. It is pretty spacious inside for one person (if it is well staked, including the sides) so touching the sides is not easy to do accidentally. See the pictures on the website - Tarptent Ultralight Shelters. I am just shy of 6' and can easily sit up, change clothes, etc, without touching the sides. It also has the netting on the sides to help with ventilation/condensation (the foot area/end also can be raised about 6" to help air flow), which also keep the weight and packed size down.

    The Contrail is $200, weighs 1lb 8oz (+2 oz if you buy the collapsible pole) and packs down to 4"X14". It also pitches in about 90 seconds (I can do it less than a minute if there is no problem staking), which is great at the end of the day and I am very tired or if it is raining and you want/need shelter quickly. It is a popular bike packing tent (i.e. for those not using a bivy), including use on the Colorado Trail (you can check comments on tarptents/Contrail on the bikepacking.net forum), so you should have no problem with it on the Divide.

    That said, while I have never tried the BA Fly Creek, it does look very nice and has good features and looks to be a quality lightweight tent. It all comes down to personal choice and weighing the pros and cons of each choice.

  15. #15
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    Marmot EOS 1. I love the single pole system that supports and sets up the whole tent. I leave my sleeping bag in the tent (in dry conditions) and roll up everything using and Exped compression bag and it all fits perfectly on my front handlebar within the Revelate Harness.
    GRAPHIC DESIGN : PRINT : SOLUTIONS
    assembly1.net

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by bmike View Post
    Vik, check out the updated Tarptent moment.

    Tarptent Ultralight Shelters

    I've pitched my contrail in rain and recently had it in overnight snow (everything was white at 2am but wet at 6am). Yes, you can get misting but I've never had it. Just the typical condensation and droplets caused by touching the interior surface.

    Those BA tents look petty nice. Will consider that for family adventures along with a mid style tent.
    +1 - Mike when I tried a Tarptent there were far fewer options. The one I had was roomy and nice on the weight/size department.

    I'm set for tents for a while. If did get a new one I'd skip the sil-nylon and go for a Cuben Fiber shelter. There are some intriguing products out there, but I figure by the time I can wear out/justify new tent gear the market will be mature in that niche.

    My buddy got a HMG Cuben Fiber mid for his family outings:

    Mids - Shelters
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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    Re: What bivy/shelter do you use?

    Quote Originally Posted by VO2 Lax View Post
    Marmot EOS 1. I love the single pole system that supports and sets up the whole tent. I leave my sleeping bag in the tent (in dry conditions) and roll up everything using and Exped compression bag and it all fits perfectly on my front handlebar within the Revelate Harness.
    Do you have any pictures of that arrangement? Id like to see how it works. Packed/unpacked etc. Thanks.

  18. #18
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    I would like to see that as well. Thanks

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by vikb View Post
    ...I'd skip the sil-nylon and go for a Cuben Fiber shelter...
    Vik, I have now heard about Cuben a dozen times or so since last summer. Have you seen, touched, or better yet, used any products made from this? If so, what is it really and what's your thoughts?

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by VO2 Lax View Post
    Marmot EOS 1. I love the single pole system that supports and sets up the whole tent. I leave my sleeping bag in the tent (in dry conditions) and roll up everything using and Exped compression bag and it all fits perfectly on my front handlebar within the Revelate Harness.

    I had an EOS 1 for a number of years. The only issue I had with it is that the poles are 22" long. Harder to pack.

    I just got a Bearpaw Designs Lair tarp with sewn in floor/mesh sides. The whole thing with poles weighs about 22 oz. I wouldn't use it in winter because one side is partially open but for 3 seasons it is light and compresses very small. The beak protrudes far enough that rain doesn't get in.
    Lair

    mike

  21. #21
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    Marmot EOS 1 Set Up

    Quote Originally Posted by Jiff24 View Post
    Do you have any pictures of that arrangement? Id like to see how it works. Packed/unpacked etc. Thanks.
    Summer set up.What bivy/shelter do you use?-img_2949.jpg


    Cold weather set up (forgot) footprint on this trip. What bivy/shelter do you use?-img_2566.jpg

    Everything fits on my front handlebar, tent, rain fly, footprint, poles, stakes, and 15 degree North Face Blue Kazoo Bag, all within a medium Exped compression dry bag. I leave the sleeping bag in the tent too when pack ing up.What bivy/shelter do you use?-img_2810.jpg

    I use this Exped compression bag What bivy/shelter do you use?-exped-waterproof-compression-bag.jpg

    The medium fits everything perfectly but you have to roll things up tightly when packing. With the large dry bag, you can pack quickly and loosely, roll, and shove in the dry bag. I did this in the rain and it was perfect. Only problem with the large bag is you'll end up with a bunch of excess rolls and it takes a bit longer to purge the air and cinch down the straps.

    I use the Salsa Minimalist front rack for extra support but you can use any straps to tight up the load on the front handlebar. I find the Revelate Harness to be GREAT but it loosens a bit during rough.descents and I need to tighten it up at the bottom or midway.
    GRAPHIC DESIGN : PRINT : SOLUTIONS
    assembly1.net

  22. #22
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    Thanks, that was helpful. So you don't have the sweetroll on the front then? You just use the harness and a large pocket it looks like? You have a front rack as well eh, so do you not strap the load to the handlebars? I wonder what the cu.in. is of the exped bag compared to the sweetroll is. I have the sweet roll, and wonder if I could get away with something like this. I have the little Kelty one man tent, that I'm sure is bulkier/heavier than the eos. Do you try to roll it all even and neatly or do you just stuff everything in when packing?

  23. #23
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    Everything is straped to the handlebar, the front rack is more for extra support and whatever else. I'm not a weight weenie so the rack is a luxury. I've tried stuffing the tent set up and sleeping bag within the tent using the Salty Roll without success. I think the Sweet Roll is same diameter as the Salty Roll so you might get just the tent in the Sweet Roll without the sleeping bag.

    Yes, I roll everything up neatly before stuffing it into the compression bag. Those 3 compression straps are the ticket to my success. Uncompressed, the diameter of the dry bag would be like 10-12 inches, once you compress everything down the diameter is like half or depending on what you stuff inside. The diameter of the Sweet and Salty roll is fixed 7 inches.
    GRAPHIC DESIGN : PRINT : SOLUTIONS
    assembly1.net

  24. #24
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    Got a trip in with my new TNF Flint 1 this past weekend. Easiest tent setup I've ever had and easiest front entry tent I've had. For the price, its excellent.

  25. #25
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    For backpacking and bike touring I use the my North Face Tadpole - an old, solid design for a lightweight (4.5lb) two man tent. This photo was a car camping trip - I've since switched to a Mountain Smith dome for car camping because I can sit up anywhere in side the dome. The Tadpole is a good three season tent, but is a little too cool for winter camping.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails What bivy/shelter do you use?-mantra-campsite.jpg  


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