Everything you can't do without.
There's no need to pack a palace when you're backpacking solo, so keep your pack light and your shelter solid with the Outdoor Research Molecule Bivy. Outdoor Research designed this streamlined bivy with a 2.5-layer Ventia shell and fully taped seams for excellent waterproofing and comfortable breathability, and coated the floor with Hydroseal and an anti-fungal finish to keep the it dry and odor free. The top of the bivy is equipped with a no-see-um mesh bug net to keep skeeters out, and the footbox is vented to let fresh air pass through, so you don't overheat on the warmer nights.
- Ventia 2.5-layer body
- Hydroseal-coated nylon floor
- Anti-fungal coating on floor
- Vented foot box
- No-see-um mesh net
- Internal mesh pocket
- Reflective webbing
- Q & A
- Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
Worked great for an overnight bivy in the alpine on Glacier Peak in Washington. I wanted to go light and tag the peak quickly, and this bag saved me significant weight. I was quite comfortable overnight in the bag and felt like I had ample space in the size medium at 5'10". I did not utilize the hanging features. The weather was dry and I was able to keep it unzipped, but even zipped up, it was plenty spacious and I was able to bring multiple small objects inside with me. It was about 45 degrees, not cold at all, but it was substantially warmer with the bivy bag zipped up. I look forward to using it this winter on some ski tours.
In the picture it looks like this bivvy has a built in sleeping bag. Is that the case?
Trial by fire
My first use of this bivy was a trial by fire but I am glad I had it. With no weather in the forecast we had planned to sleep under the stars, but knowing the Unitas I threw two of these in my pack for my son and me just in case.
That night a massive thunderstorm came and rained on is and eventually rain turned to sleet. Both of us stayed dry and warm.
Word of warning, these pictures are obviously with the bivy stuffed full, although it looks like maybe there is some room around your face or maybe a wire to keep it up, there isn't. While I was dry I was claustrophobic and spent the 4 hour storm holding the thing up from my face.
Also, as with all bivys, you will get condensation inside. By morning time it was a little damp. I didn't get to test out the opening at the foot but doubt it will help much.
Did what it is supposed to do though, and when it is raining / bordering on snowing you realize that you are glad their claims to being waterproof hold up.
I'm 6 feet one half inch. Is the regular length going to be comfortable for me? It appears so, but I tend to get the Long JIC and it doesn't look as if that's available.
I bought this bivy this past winter and was disappointed to find out that it doesn't come with rods to keep the head-area upright. Is there a way that I can DIY something to keep the head area upright so it feels less like I'm sleeping in a weird trashbag-coffin like thing?
Try making your own "hoop", out of some flexible fiberglass pole, or pvc type of pipe, and sew in a "holder" tab on the inside of each side near the head area. It may take some experimetation, but you might be very pleased with your outcome...eventually, you'll figure something out.