Bivvy a month 2023.

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MuddyPete
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by MuddyPete »

Bearlegged wrote: Fri Nov 03, 2023 4:22 pm Image
"Wyld Stallyns"...very subtle :cool:
May you always have tail wind.
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gecko76
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by gecko76 »

October bivi update: went back to see if I could find the spot I was aiming for last month, and did :grin:
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Frustratingly I was within about 30 yards and turned back too early, but it'll be there next time.

Also popped by the cave and, um, yeah. Dodged a soggy bullet there.
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JimmyG
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by JimmyG »

Nice one to look forward to Gecko!
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ledburner
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by ledburner »

RIP wrote: Fri Nov 03, 2023 10:51 pm Wild Stallion :wink:
Having floppy issues & erection problems getting your pole up? :grin:
Wild Camping woes :roll:



[Edit:] Only available by mail order*?
*We strive to ship in plain brown paper packaging. :grin:
I hope you think you know, what I might of exactly meant.
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MuddyPete
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by MuddyPete »

ledburner wrote: Sun Nov 05, 2023 7:15 pm
RIP wrote: Fri Nov 03, 2023 10:51 pm Wild Stallion :wink:
Having floppy issues & erection problems getting your pole up? :grin:
Wild Camping woes :roll:

[Edit:] Only available by mail order*?
*We strive to ship in plain brown paper packaging. :grin:
*Surely: "male" order? :smile:
May you always have tail wind.
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fatbikephil
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by fatbikephil »

Live bivvy in progress- bit bloody drafty! Beeb saying 7mph - hah! My erse.... no tarp :???:
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by fatbikephil »

November....
I'd a notion to do some gravel bashing up by Loch Rannoch but as usual I couldn't be bothered driving so loaded up the straggler and headed out after work on Friday eve. 60 odd k of easy pedaling up to Callander followed. Twas quite chilly (-2) at home but the temps crept up above freezing by the time I got to Callander chippy. I'd roughly scoped a potential bivvy spot in the woods above the cycleway by Kilmahog but as usual, in the dark it all looked a bit iffy. After a couple of k up the track I spied an area of dense-ish pine trees just by the track so piled in and after a bit of wandering about, found a perfect spot. Unroll bivvy bag, inflate mat, dive in, sip whisky read book. On the strength of a 0% chance of rain forecast, I didn't bother with the tarp (6th time this year!) but the forecast also said little or no wind and it got pretty breezy at one point. Stars all around so I crashed out, fairly confident I wouldn't get a soaking. Thermorest quilt super cozy!

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8hrs solid sleep followed. I woke to the sun peering over the Menteith hills opposite. Up and out sharpish (such that I forgot to photo the bivvy!) and off up the glen on the track and then cycleway to Killin.

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Sun! (and snow on Stobbinein)

Had a bit of breakfast faff - the cafe at strathyre was 20 minutes off opening so I had a coffee and a pie from the shop. But a few k up the trail at Kingshouse the cafe cum pub was open and I fancied a fry up, having not brought the stove. £15! it was pretty good but what a rip off....

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Fine viaduct on the cycleway. After Killin it was a fairly easy run along Loch Tay and then down the Tay strath and my usual back road route home

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sunset over Ben Ledi and Vorlich - my bivvy spot was just below these!

A good outing though with lots of lovely Autumnal colours plus 240k!
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Tractionman
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by Tractionman »

lovely pics @fatbikephil, curious what it was about, 'in the dark it all looked a bit iffy', that put you off the spot?
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fatbikephil
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by fatbikephil »

Tractionman wrote: Sat Nov 11, 2023 11:25 pm lovely pics @fatbikephil, curious what it was about, 'in the dark it all looked a bit iffy', that put you off the spot?
An all too common scenario for me - you scope out a spot on the map, check out the aerials, add some nous and think "that looks like it will be OK" Then you get there, it's dark and your chosen bit of woodland has been a) clear felled, b) surrounded by a bog c) got bleutered by a wind storm, or c) is a swamp.... In this case it was just a case of lots of damp bracken between me and the trees and a lot of windblow. Plus I'm quite picky these days, having pitched up in some fairly marginal spots. In this case it all turned out well!
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Verena
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by Verena »

Looks gorgeous!

Not sure what I'm more impressed with, November in Scotland with no tarp; or 8 hours solid sleep?!?!?
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Tractionman
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by Tractionman »

fatbikephil wrote: Sat Nov 11, 2023 11:45 pm
Tractionman wrote: Sat Nov 11, 2023 11:25 pm lovely pics @fatbikephil, curious what it was about, 'in the dark it all looked a bit iffy', that put you off the spot?
An all too common scenario for me - you scope out a spot on the map, check out the aerials, add some nous and think "that looks like it will be OK" Then you get there, it's dark and your chosen bit of woodland has been a) clear felled, b) surrounded by a bog c) got bleutered by a wind storm, or c) is a swamp.... In this case it was just a case of lots of damp bracken between me and the trees and a lot of windblow. Plus I'm quite picky these days, having pitched up in some fairly marginal spots. In this case it all turned out well!
Thanks for your reply @fatbikephil -- I have yet to venture out on an autumnal bivvy, I am waiting for the 'right' conditions :-) full moon, little wind, no rain, domestic 'pass', etc etc :roll:
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gecko76
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by gecko76 »

Good big ride there Phil. It's definitely turned a bit nippy. I'm away next weekend so hoping the following one isn't too inclement.
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by fatbikephil »

Verena wrote: Sun Nov 12, 2023 8:20 am Looks gorgeous!

Not sure what I'm more impressed with, November in Scotland with no tarp; or 8 hours solid sleep?!?!?
Last November it was lashing rain... To be honest I generally sleep pretty well on my bivvies. The whisky helped no doubt!
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RIP
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by RIP »

Phil wrote: Plus I'm quite picky these days
:grin:

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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by fatbikephil »

:grin: One has standards, you know!
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by RIP »

:-bd
"My God, Ponsonby, I'm two-thirds of the way to the grave and what have I done?" - RIP

The sign outside the asylum is the wrong way round.....

"At least you got some stories" - James Acaster
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Wotsits
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by Wotsits »

11/12

After the almost continous wet weather we've been having lately & with a busy social schedule in the run-up to Xmas, i decided to take advantage of a clear forecast for Fri eve to check-out my winter gear & head up to meet Fargoist for a night at Greensykes Bothy..
Fargoist headed in from Hoik, whilst i set off from Eskdalmuir loaded up with a rucksack full of logs, coal & some refreshment ~O)

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There wasn't a cloud & the night sky was amazing, was hoping that the northern lights reported earlier in the week would make a show, but there was no such luck & had to make do with shooting stars.

Was cosy in the bothy, with a crisp frost outside, a re-lighting of the stove was a welcome accompaniment to breakfast..

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The frost soon melted as the sun rose higher

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The Brynje from now onward will be known as the Brokeback :grin:

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With the bothy left spick-&-span, we had a loop round the forest

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And a re-fuel at the Old School Cafe before another coffee stop in Langholm, drop-off in Hoik & drive home.

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Was a really enjoyable trip at one of my favourite bothys :-bd
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sean_iow
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by sean_iow »

Decided not to leave it until the last minute this month. The forecast was a yellow warning for rain but that wasn't until 06:00 Thursday so if I went Wednesday night I would be able to get out and set-up in the dry. There was only light winds forecast so that was the important part.

Left home earlier than usual as I was taking the hammock and didn't know how long it would take to get set up. It was chillier than expected when I left home but I had to ride over the downs on the way so I'd soon warm once climbing, although I soon cooled down once descending down the far side.

I made it to my chosen woodland which has an area of pines in it with no real paths leading in. There used to be a very feint path off a hardly used feint path so I turned off the road and headed along the first feint path. After a while I was convinced I'd missed the turning so headed back. The wood is mainly scrub mixed broad leaf and I could see the pines sticking up in the distance so thought I'd just cut across to them, turned off the path and at first it wasn't too bad, just bramble etc. but got steadily worse, then came a section of downed tress and it became almost impassable :roll: had to lift the bike over trees, drag it through vegetation, avoid hidden drainage ditches full from all the recent rain and generally try not to just end up on the ground.

I eventually made it through to the pines and spotted the part built shelter the kids made a few years back and the old rope swing so knew I was in the right area. Scouted around until I found 2 trees the right distance apart and with none leaning over nearby. Got the tarp up, hammock up, quilts on and sat down for a rest. The hammock is more bulk and weight and more faff than the other options but the fact is makes a place to sit once up probably makes it worthwhile. It would be more worthwhile if I was arriving earlier and having dinner etc. as for a quick post dinner BAM it's a lot of effort but I needed some motivation to get out so a first proper outing for the hammock was just the carrot to get me moving.

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The forecast low for overnight was 11 deg C and I had my homemade underquilt (adapted Mountain Warehouse down blanket) and my Cumulus 150 quilt. I've survived with them at 7 degrees testing in Mum's woodland but it was a bit too cold and woke me up several times, hopefully the forecast 11 would be right. I could hear the road in the distance, it's was only a few hundred metres away, but it wasn't too loud. It didn't seem to be in the direction I thought it should be :???:

Work at about 2am as I was cold, it felt much colder than 11. I already had my down jacket on so I'd just have to suck it up. Curling up in the hammock helped with the cold but isn't very comfy. First drops of rain at 5:00 as forecast and then the rain proper arrived shortly after. My alarm went off at 6:00 and got up 15 minutes later. A check of the thermometer showed a low of 6 deg C so that's the limit for this set-up. Packed away under the tarp and everything was dry so put it all in the front bag which left the set pack empty. Waterproofs on I took the tarp down and just stuffed it into the seat pack.

Now the tricky bit, how to get out of the woods. I wasn't going to head back the way I'd come in, even if I could find it. After several laps of the immediate area I spotted a feint path through the undergrowth and it was rideable. After about 30 metres it joined another path, ummm, couldn't be bothered to get the phone out and see where I was so chose right, followed this for quite a while and came out on a track, didn't recognise it in but decided to go left as I thought that was towards the road I wanted and I had a vague idea where I was. Kept riding for what seemed like ages and then the track started climbing, I then realised where I was and it was the opposite side of the woods to where I thought I was :lol: Must take a compass next time, or maybe not, it's not like I was in a rush. Looking at Strava it turns out I exited using the path I was looking for the previous night, when the first feint path joined the second I should have turned left and I would have been about 50m from the road I wanted. The rest of the ride to work was uneventful but wet as the rain was at full amber warning level.

Stopped in town to get a picture of the John Milne art installation for the special interest whats-app group I'm in (Reg) and then to the office for the first coffee of the day.

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My shoes were full of water but the full waterproofs meant the rest of me was dry :-bd

11/12 and 45 in a row (44 for Ralph) - Ralph isn't sure about the hammock as he ends up sleeping in the ridge-line organiser. Looks like I'll have to make him his own hammock :lol:
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GoneCaving
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by GoneCaving »

Right, I have totally neglected BaM updates for some time, and while I'm out of the running for a badge this year, I figure I'd add a quick update for the sake of completeness (or should that be incompleteness??)

June 30th: I rode in the WalesDuro this summer with a friend. On the Friday morning I took the ferry from Dublin to Holyhead (my but they don't cater well for cyclists, I froze my nuts off in Dublin standing with the cars waiting to board). Then a nice, but very wet spin across Anglesea to the Ship Inn in Red Wharf Bay, where we dried out for a bit over a very nice Welsh Dragon Pie (shepherds pie with added chilli) and a pint or two. The bivvy that night was in the woods at Coed Cyrnol. We'd expected to see other racers, but t'was just the two of us.

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July 1st: End of day 1 of WalesDuro. I was pretty much toast by the time we got to the farm (is this allowed under the BaM rules? Organised camping, but not a campsite?? Oh well, if it's not, then that's another zero for this year). I'd not done nearly enough training for a 150km ride, with 3,500m of climbing, so despite having the pace of a snail, I was glad to get there! The following day was also eventful, with my mate having his derailleur cage bent beyond repair on the climb up the Gap, leaving him another 60km to ride on a dodgy single speed conversion (only slight Pinion smugness on my part!).

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August 21st: A short 20km spin and a quick local bivvy on the side of Slieve Foy overlooking Carlingford Lough. No photos takes.

Sept: Another zero. Travel, and then COVID getting in the way.

Oct 30th/31st: Two nights of a bike packing trip from Enniskillen, across to Cloondara and then down to Dublin on the Royal Canal. The first night was probably the best night's bivvy I've had. I pitched on a bridge over the canal in a spot that was quiet (apart from the occasional firework in the distance), reasonably sheltered, and undisturbed.

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Sadly the second night wasn't as nice. I was late finding a spot to camp, after a day of riding with a friend (light gravel bike with skinny wheels makes for easier riding than laden mountain bike, with 2.8" tyres). The weather was wild and wet, and then despite thinking I've found a spot late enough and far enough away from the casual passerby, some scrotes passed at around 11pm and decided to let of some fireworks near my tent. Not best pleased about that. No pics from the second night.
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by NeilA »

"Two Bothies Tour from Rhayader with David"

BAM November 13th or 14th, 11 of 11, 23 of 23

Two Bothies bikepacking tour with David in the Cambrians and thereabouts, Monday to Wednesday.
85 miles and 8375' ascent.

Day One... 19.42 miles 1884' ascent
Rhayader to Nant Rhys bothy. Wet, very wet, spotted Lluest Cwmbach bothy the other side of a reservoir, fantastic location. Later became windy, dodgy river crossing, hike a bike up a cursed mountain, and down through splodgy bog. Dark now, Komoot went down. Reading the os map under the forest canopy but couldn't stop it from getting wet. At least it folded easier! 'Analogue' got us out of the proverbial that time :geek: . Finally in the dark our bothy appeared. Cosy and homely building, especially once the fire was roaring.

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Day Two... 36.92 miles 4386' ascent
Nant Rhys Bothy to Pontrhydfendigaid, a tough day, raining at first but brightened later, a dead end threw us back up the hills for an alternative route, many miles with little food or drink, and no hostelries. A promising village offered nowt but a self service cafe, no cake or real food but shouldnt complain, reckon customers will find plenty of delights in the summer. A monster ascent led us to the promised Pontrhydfendigaid, with shop, a restock, then chips + few beers in the Red Lion Hotel. Top pub. Onwards in the dark up up up and up to Moel Prysgau Bothy in the clouds. Tough grind throughout the ascent. Deep in the forest our bothy appeared. And a fellow bikepacker, Mervyn (partook BB100), within. Many tales told, fire already ticking over plus beer, whisky and food.

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Day Three... 28.66 miles 2143' ascent
Lazy start to the day, all three of us prepared the stove for hot water and a warm room while brekkie consumed and more tales. Off we go for a monster downhill back to the Red Lion for bacon, eggs and beers. Fortunately the staff cooked for us even though closed :-bd Real food, sank without trace. Another long uphill climb into the wilds, discovered a non MBA bothy, beautiful location and pretty much secret(was to us!), one to go to soon, then through the beautiful wasteland till we followed lovely double track mile after mile, beside the top reservoir, then road after that first upper dam, beside the succession of massive reservoirs leading to Elan Valley Dam. Good weather throughout. Back in Rhayader in the dark but not too late, first pub spotted served us one pint for the road home.
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Absolutely brilliant trip. Errors a plenty, much learnt, bring on the next trip, not sure what will happen in December, could be an epic or may be back to the play ground, been a while :shock: but definately the pilgrimage to Bearbones Bikepacking Winter event in January.

Notes:
- Both David and I agreed we have been slack in getting out for proper rides for months, so we should be fitter for the Winter Ride!!!
- My new acquisition ( FB Marketplace) Osprey Escapist 25litre rucksack designed for biking was a revelation. Comfortable, carried its load well, plenty of pockets to store specific stuff and find easily. I might even put a bladder in to stop my current infrequent fluid intake. Also the perfect size for a day hike if one is carrying waterproofs and/or a stove and water for a brew.
- I have upgraded a waterproof map case as essential kit, after our debacle, and until the ultimate hi tec sat nav device arrives!! (knowing me in 10 years time)
- Add to that a magnifying glass to help establish the fine detail so crucial to navigation.
- Red Lion Hotel, Pontrhydfendigaid. A cracking pub, friendly staff, gorgeous food and the landlord Neil asked me to mention his establishment is bikepack friendly and has rooms to stay.
- Mishaps- Dave's phone died from the rain! I lost a glove and a rear Cateye light. Both of us came so close to losing our footing while crossing a river with a powerful flow. Thank the lord our bikes were held downstream of us, not by design either! You may see a fine array of weird beers bought from the local shop near the Red Lion. Thought I'd support the Welsh local brewers instead of getting 4 x St. Miguels but realised later one of the cans cost £5.75 WTF(which I never finished, was ghastly) =))
- Massive celebration from me for beating the end of month deadline quite considerably :YMPARTY:
Last edited by NeilA on Sat Nov 18, 2023 10:47 am, edited 1 time in total.
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fatbikephil
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by fatbikephil »

:-bd
Looks a fab trip that. Plus some other good stuff going on too :-bd :-bd
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RIP
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by RIP »

Yep, excellent work in all that murk and aqueousness :-bd . Compliments on all the "adversity overcome", and beers for breakfast is real dedication :smile: .
"My God, Ponsonby, I'm two-thirds of the way to the grave and what have I done?" - RIP

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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by RIP »

The esteemed Mr Belson is currently enjoying 50mph winds on his BaM. I have been unable to ascertain if this is being caused by his chosen beer or the meteorological conditions.

But, given that a few of us have enjoyed similar conditions recently, and also given that I am trying out new stove fuels (see the SanitiserStove(TM) discussions), I think there's a MYOG opportunity here.

Sean is of course in a seasidy area so I wondered if he might be able to obtain some wholesale kids sandcastle windmills. A reasonable number could probably be linked together to power an electric stove.
"My God, Ponsonby, I'm two-thirds of the way to the grave and what have I done?" - RIP

The sign outside the asylum is the wrong way round.....

"At least you got some stories" - James Acaster
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sean_iow
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by sean_iow »

We have an actual wind turbine blade manufacturer on The Island so I might be able to get some cheap factory seconds, they're quite, umm, big :lol:

Stu, how many sections will a 150m tall carbon pole be?

PS, this isn't actually a BAM, that was Thursday during the weather warning for rain. I'm trying out a new underquilt for the hammock so drove to mum's as I could bring enough kit to stay warm if the quilt isn't up to it, unlike my BAM where I woke up shivering :lol:
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whitestone
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Re: Bivvy a month 2023.

Post by whitestone »

sean_iow wrote: Sat Nov 18, 2023 10:49 pmI'm trying out a new underquilt for the hammock so drove to mum's as I could bring enough kit to stay warm if the quilt isn't up to it, unlike my BAM where I woke up shivering :lol:
The general rule of thumb for underquilts is to use one that's rated about 5C lower than your expected temperature use, i.e. one rated at 0C is probably good to 5C and so on. Does depend on how windy things are - a wind sock can help in those situations but only by a couple of degrees.

*Where* did you get cold? On top? From underneath? Head end, feet?

Underquilts take a bit of setting up unless you are lucky. They want to be snug enough that they conform to you when lying in the hammock but not too much so that you then compress the insulation - having the hammock and UQ hang side by side and arrange it so that the UQ sits about 150-200mm higher is a good starting point. Also the cinching at each end takes a bit of getting right. Either have someone cinch those up for you while you lie in the hammock or video yourself and work things out from there.

It took me about ten nights until I got things sorted and thought: "ah, this is what they mean".
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