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Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent Quality its important to understand what a Bivy is, and how it works, vs. a tent. No bevy breaths - so you should expect condensation, but this is normal. the bivy is very well constructed, high quality 'floor'; i've never had problems with rocks or anything. I am clostrophoic but you can get used to this, plenty of space for thermarest and thick bag. i will often sleep on my side with this system. Bug netting may need to be propped off to keep it off your skin or it will be useless (bugs bite through netting against the skin). Highly functional. I use on the PCT and love it.
Date published: 2017-08-30
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Condensation Magnet I have had several OR products and have always been impressed with them. Not so with this bivy. Build quality is great, love the features, and at 6'6" fit great inside the long. However, in a 2 night backpacking trip to horse thief canyon I was bothered by layer of moisture through the whole bivy both nights. I used the foot vent and kept the top open the whole first night and half the second, only pulling the top over my head when rain came by. It kept the rain out, but the condensation in. I was lucky to be in the desert so that I could dry my sleeping bag out in the morning before packing it. My friend in a Gore-Tex military bivy had no problems.
Date published: 2016-05-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Perfect for me Does not need any poles to carry or break , just paracord tied to a tree or trek pole and you're good to go , fits my klymit 3/4 inflatable pad and down top quilt snug, and it is not claustrophobic, air flow is nice . It's soooooooo light to carry, lighter than my hammock/strap setup. I'm not a tent person and tarps aren't my favorite go to, I use this accompanied with a over tarp has a rain fly, but mostly on its own for dry weather when not hammocking (when bugs are out). Works well. Very thankful for it .
Date published: 2017-07-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Alaskan Refuge Although there are more expensive and heavier bivy's in OR's lineup I wanted something ultralight that would work in Alaska and Montana for all seasons. In winter the bivy extends the Plasma 15 rating closer to 0 degrees. The photos show how I added an upgrade 3rd party mosquito hood which allows the ultimate in protection during summer pursuits. My Marmot plasma 15 with Thermarest insulated NeoAir mattress fit inside surprisingly well. I could add a closed cell foam pad as well and still have room.
Date published: 2017-10-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Not super-breathable but OK. Keep the weather out. I shouldn't comment on the Outdoor Research bivy sack by itself because a sleeping system is a system so I need to describe my general setup on trips. Normally I found trees or something to run a utility cords over the bivy location. Then I hung the sack's entrance flap up just a few inches. This will keep the sack from touching my face. Many times I also bring a 5" x 7" tarp if I expect rain, snow or freezing temp. In those cases I still run a cord over the bivy site but throw the tarp over the cord to make a roof. This allows me to keep the bivy sack open all night to prevent extra moisture build-up. I found this bivy sack typically warmer that a tent -- maybe due to the smaller volume that my body needs to heat up. I also have an REI Minimalist buvy -- in comparison the fabric of REI is more breathable. But overall the OR fabric is OK. One small complaint: During winding nights I wanted to peg the bivy on the ground and I wished there are two tie-down loops at the head. Instead, OR has two loops at the feet which is one too many. I think the idea will be two loop at the shoulders, one at the feet. It also has one loop on the top -- OK to hang the sack with the flaps closed. And it has two loops on the flap (not OK). I wish it has one loop at the flap so that when I use the no-see-um and hang the flap, it hangs right up in the middle. Overall, I'm satisfied so far. Both REI and OR sacks serve different trip conditions and I had them for years.
Date published: 2017-01-03
Rated 2 out of 5 by from No cross bar The material feels very rubbery, my socks and sleeping bag tend to stick to the walls while I'm sliding in. Not having a cross bar over the face makes the material rub on your face and makes the bug net useless. The bug net rests directly on your face making it fair game to all biting insects. I tried using the tie down loop directly on top of the bivy but it only held up the chest portion while keeping the net resting on my face. However. It is light as a feather and will serve in a pinch. It packs down into the size of a 2L bottle. Perfect for ultra light solo camping or as an emergency shelter. I currently have it in my car as an emergency shelter if needed. I use it with a Cabelas ultralight long sleeping pad and it takes up every square inch of floor space. Because of its 3 inch thickness it leaves me very little room for me and my sleeping bag.
Date published: 2015-12-05
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Not good in the rain Used this for a Wonderland Trail trip. Worked well until I experienced rain/snow the last night. I had my head under a friends tent vestibule so I didn't have to cover my face during the rain/ snow in hopes of reducing condensation inside the bivy, however, within about 30 minutes of getting into the bivy that night (rain was fairly heavy at that point) , the inside of the bivy was wet and my down bag was getting wet. I hadn't experienced any condensation the previous 5 nights, but that rain caused a lot of issues for this bivy. I would avoid this in rainy conditions and go with a Gore-Tex bivy.
Date published: 2017-10-02
Rated 3 out of 5 by from NICE BIVY BUT... I bought and returned this bivy. It's very nice, BUT it DOES NOT include any poles. From the pictures, it appears to include poles near ones head, but in fact there are none. And no apparent way to use any. A disappointment. If it were designed with poles, I think it would be a Great bivy sack. If its having poles, or not, is not an issue for you, then you shouldn't be disappointed.
Date published: 2015-11-19
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Questions & Answers

I noticed this product is listed as "3-4-season," but how does it fare in the wintertime? I ask this because I notice other bivy-sacks are listed as simply "4-season." I am looking for an ultra-light bivy that I can use in the winter. Thank you!

Asked by: Jason Venditti
This bivy is designed for lightweight solo excursions. It can be used for most of the year, but will not hold up to some of the more severe conditions one could encounter during the winter season. For this reason, while it can handle some of the colder conditions, it is not a fully 4-season bivy.
Answered by: REIservice
Date published: 2017-11-02

I don't understand how to install the telescoping pole which came with the bivy sac. There is no sleeve or hooks for it.

Asked by: pmhaas
This bivy was not designed to come with a pole. Please contact us directly at 1 (800) 426-4840.
Answered by: REIservice
Date published: 2017-06-16

Is this supposed to have any structural support? In the photos and diagrams it appears to be supported in an arch shape over the head and the feet, but mine didn't come with anything but the bivy itself. Am I required to use my own tie line and stakes?

Asked by: TLH453
This bivy does not include a pole or any structural support. Additionally, it does not include stakes and guylines.
Answered by: REIservice
Date published: 2017-07-04

Is the fabric sufficiently sturdy to not require a footprint?

Asked by: larry
A footprint is not necessary for this bivy but a tarp or extra material beneath the bivy will certainly prolong the floor fabric.
Answered by: REIservice
Date published: 2017-11-02

Never used a bivy before. Will this keep you warmer than a tent would under the same conditions with the same sleeping bag and pad? Also, a normal inflatable sleeping pad will fit inside this, right?

Asked by: big cec
​Bivy sacks increase warming capacity by about 10 degrees fahrenheit. It is hard to say if a 'normal' sleeping pad fits inside a bivy, as it will depend on the dimensions of your pad compared to the dimensions of this bivy sack.
Answered by: REIservice
Date published: 2017-11-02
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