Sierra Designs Backcountry Bivy

The best bivy for winter camping from the Fall/Winter 2018 Gear Guide.
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No one wants to spend an unplanned night in the snow, but if it happens, this bivy beats the pants off a snow cave. For the weight of a midlayer, it provides bomber quarters. Bivies are normally claustrophobic, but a U-shaped opening that zips down to mid-stomach affords more wiggle room than average: “I could even sit up and watch the sunset,” said one Alaska tester after an overnight near Center Ridge. Moisture built up on the inside during a subzero day in Chugach State Park, but that’s standard for bivies.

THE DETAILS

Lightweight nylon (30-denier on bottom, 20-denier waterproof/breathable fabric on top) helps cut weight, and our Alaska tester reported no tears after 10 nights in rocky, high-alpine campsites. The 80-inch length and 36-inch shoulder width fit his 6’3” frame with extra room to stash gear. A zippered mesh window at the head makes the Backcountry Bivy feel more airy in fair weather (it zips fully shut in foul conditions). 

TRAIL CRED

“My camping companions quite literally forgot I was there and bailed when their own tents failed in the storm. Turns out, my bivy was the only shelter that survived,” said one tester after weathering a whopper of a gale in Chugach State Park, Alaska.

Weight: 13 oz.

sierradesigns.com

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