Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Touring
Reload this Page >

Help me with bikepacking

Touring Have a dream to ride a bike across your state, across the country, or around the world? Self-contained or fully supported? Trade ideas, adventures, and more in our bicycle touring forum.

Help me with bikepacking

Old 12-05-19, 06:35 AM
Senior Member
staehpj1's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Tallahassee, FL
Posts: 9,518
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 301 Post(s)
Liked 34 Times in 27 Posts
Originally Posted by nun View Post
Adventure racers will usually have a bivy of some sort, but I don't like them because of condensation and they are obviously small and uncomfortable.
I have not found that they are necessarily uncomfortable. It depends on a variety of factors. I figure that you are already in a mummy bag so being in a bivy that is basically just a cover over the sleeping bag isn't necessarily much/any more confining than the bag already is if the bivy is the kind that moves with you. Unlike the hooped bivys, it can actually be less claustrophobic than a tent.

The hooped bivys that try to be tiny tents are more confining IMO and often weigh more than a tarp tent. Those I don't like for touring. The ones I use are more like a really light sleeping bag cover.

I really don't have any trouble with condensation. My DWR shell on my sleeping bag helps and having the sleeping pad inside the bivy helps too. The little condensation that does form is a few drops under the pad down by my feet and a few drips on top of the shell on top of my thighs. The moisture under the pad is easily wiped up in the morning and the few drops on top of the bag are easily brushed or shaken off. I have had zero problems with the down ever getting wet or the shell ever soaking up water. With the bug bivy there just isn't any condensation at all.

I like to cowboy camp a lot of the time, but like the ability to have varying levels of shelter that can be switched quickly between all in a shelter package (tarp and bivy) that weighs a bit over a pound now that I went with a bigger tarp for better coverage. My bivy can be uncomfortable when it is hot and buggy, but I take a mesh bug bivy instead if I expect those conditions. I have never done it but the bug bivy packs tiny and weighs 5.3 ounces so I could really pack both. I admit that I did have a couple miserable nights about the time I got to Louisiana on the ST and didn't have a bug bivy. It would have been fine with the bug bivy though and if I had owned one then I'd have had it mailed to me by the time I got to Del Rio or so and out of the arid part of the trip. I'd also have mailed the regular bivy home at that point.

I like to start out on warm evenings sleeping on top of everything. As it gets cooler I might drape the sleeping bag over me, get in it, zip it up, zip up the bivy, etc. as it gets colder/windier. The tarp is likely to only be pitched if there is perceived to be risk of rain. If it rains and I didn't pitch the tarp I might just pull it over myself and my gear during the night. Not pitching a tarp or tent allows me to camp without being harassed by police in some locations where they would otherwise run me off. I am told folks are run off for camping in Texas roadside picnic areas for example, but they never bothered me sleeping in my sleeping bag next to the picnic table and they very obviously saw me on several occasions. I find my little 7 ounce bivy (or 5.3 ounce bug bivy) and 12 ounce tarp to be a nice comfy setup and very flexible. Depending on the weather and bug conditions I may not bother with one or the other of the components
Check out my profile, articles, and trip journals at:
staehpj1 is offline  
Old 12-05-19, 09:43 AM
Happy Feet
Senior Member
Happy Feet's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 3,609
Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1421 Post(s)
Liked 289 Times in 182 Posts
If it is not expected to rain, and not too buggy, I don't mind the bivi. Mine is Gortex and has the hoop (which I do or don't use depending). I can fit my bags and shoes inside up by the head.
Using it I can fit both bivi and sleeping bag in my HB pack. That means only inflatable pad and clothes in seat/saddle bag. Food and tools etc... in frame bag.
You can reduce packing size quite a bit if you choose food you don't need to cook. My kitchen is a can opener, SS cup that fits on my Nalgene bottle and spoon.

If it's buggy or might be rainy, or I want a bit more privacy, I go for my North Face Storm Break 1 with a fastpack (minimal) weight of just over 2 lb's. https://www.thenorthface.com/shop/stormbreak-1-en-ca

That fits in my HB bag so then I have to find space for my sleeping bag on the rear, hence two small panniers.
That's also because, in mixed weather in Canada, you have to have clothes to cover a wider variety of conditions so I have a warm layer, down jacket, rain shell.

Lots of room for me in a one man tent unless it's really rainy and I need to hang clothes.

Happy Feet is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.