A bivy (bivouac) is slang for a small tent or shelter for outdoor enthusiasts who are looking for a compact and lightweight option whether backpacking or bicycle touring. We review some of the best!
How to Choose a Tent
When you are going camping, backpacking or bicycle touring then you require some sort of shelter whether it be a tent, bivy sack, bivy sack, camping hammock or a combination of some of these. If you have decided on a tent, this is what to consider when purchasing:
Size – generally for 1 to 4 people. Also consider upsizing your tent size by 1 person, particularly as many tents run small and to allow for storing gear. To reduce weight many bivy tents are low so are you sit up or is there a need to stand up. Some models provide a vestibule for gear storage.
Compact – so it saves space in your pack or pannier.
Weight – you will be carrying the tent all day in your backpack or on your bicycle so you want something lightweight. If 2 or more people consider splitting the weight with one person carrying the fly, poles and pegs and the other the main compartment.
Seasonality – so pick the tent that is constructed to handle weather conditions when you will be outdoors. For example if winter camping consider a 4-season model.
Ease of use – how quickly and easy is the tent to set up, important after a long day on the trail and maybe even late in the evening or during a sudden storm.
Ventilation – many backpacking type tents provide are a mesh covering with a fly covering so you can sleep under the stars at times and keeps condensation out but if not are their windows with a good air flow.
Waterproof – your tent must be waterproof as you most certainly will encounter rain during your journey.
Accessories – I love a few pockets for things I might need to grab quickly such as a head lamp in the middle of the night.
Type of camping – while this site is more for those backpacking or bicycle touring if you will be car camping in a campground you will not be as concerned about weight and compact size and can have more amenities.