Sierra Designs Baffin

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DennisDawg
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Sierra Designs Baffin

#1

Post by DennisDawg » Thu May 19, 2011 9:13 pm

I know you guys mostly go big, roof top campers and trailers and . . . but, I am going to try going small and relatively cheap! I have been using a Sierra Designs Light Year for backpacking and more often for camping with the truck. After I got used to it being so little, I got to like it because I can break camp in minutes!

But, I am wanting to shed weight in the pack now and downsize yet again, and in comes the Sierra Designs Baffin, a simple bivy. With a pad and lighter bad inside, it should work. Initial yard test shows it to be warm, snug but comfortable though the zippers are a bit awkward to operate once you are in it.

Will test in camp soon . . . but it should make setting and and breaking camp a 3 minute task at most! Woo hoo!
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Local Repeaters On Which You Might Find Me (K6DOB):
  • Big Bear K6BB 147.330+ PL: 131.8 - Keller Peak KE6TZG: 146.385+ PL: 146.2 - Sierra Peak KD6DDM 146.610- PL: 103.5

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OLLIE
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Re: Sierra Designs Baffin

#2

Post by OLLIE » Fri May 20, 2011 12:05 pm

I have considered bivy set ups several times. The only problem I've found is moisture build up inside if you close the face cover. I can't stand being damp in my sleep. The are ideal for lightweight backpacking for sure. If this works out for you, let us know. I carry a two man tent (REI Campdome 2) with me in my pack because I plan on my son starting to hike with me soon. I want him right next to me when we go to bear country.
"OLLIE"
(K6JYB)


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DennisDawg
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Re: Sierra Designs Baffin

#3

Post by DennisDawg » Sat May 21, 2011 11:23 am

I have read about the issues with condensation in the bivy. It comes from two things (they say), breath and sweat. The breath issue is indeed from if the top is too closed up, had to avoid in the rain so I plan on avoiding rain or tucking in a little lean to when possible. The other, according to Sierra Designs occurs in the areas of the bivy where the sleeping bag and bivy have gaps where vapor accumulates and they recommend keeping the bivy kind of tucked. I think the sweat issues also comes from not stepping down the sleeping bag, i.e. because the bivy makes makes a bag warmer, you need a less warm bag and then deal with temperature changes with clothing.

With the folks I have been our and about with on foot, most all have one man tents. Some of them wake up with a lot of condensation in the tent, while I never had an issue. Maybe I sweat less, or it is how I open and close my bag or something, but it has been less an issue.

Also, some bivys handle it better than others and the ultra light folks often make their own! This one, admittedly is not the best, it is a test . . . but so far, in house testing, 100% pass. Need to go camp!!!!
Local Repeaters On Which You Might Find Me (K6DOB):
  • Big Bear K6BB 147.330+ PL: 131.8 - Keller Peak KE6TZG: 146.385+ PL: 146.2 - Sierra Peak KD6DDM 146.610- PL: 103.5

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OLLIE
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Re: Sierra Designs Baffin

#4

Post by OLLIE » Sat May 21, 2011 5:22 pm

All excellent points Dennis. I have heard a lot of the same factors causing the moisture build up. I've made several bivy with a pancho, pancho liner, and sleeping bag. Works great.

On the issue with moisture in the tent, it usually has to do with how well the tent vents. My tents have always had small vents to allow the tent to breathe.
"OLLIE"
(K6JYB)


APRS
K6JYB ("BugEater")
K6JYB-7 (VX-8R)


http://www.facebook.com/FJOllie

"Some people live an entire lifetime and wonder if they have ever made a difference in the world, the Marines don't have that problem."
-Ronald Reagan


CHECK OUT THE OUTDOOR ADVENTURE USA AMATEUR RADIO NET:
Every Thursday night at 7:30pm PST

Repeater
146.385+ PL: 146.2 Keller Peak (Echolink Equipped)

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DennisDawg
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Re: Sierra Designs Baffin

#5

Post by DennisDawg » Sun May 22, 2011 8:54 pm

I think I just know sweaty people!

The ultra lighters sew their own bivys out of very lightweight materials, high tech stuff! I am not that handy . . . but . . .

I plan on testing this for one Friday night in Big Bear in June. That’ll leave me Saturday to recover with bourbon by the fire from any failures. I need a couple of items, like a pad to replace the blow up Big Agnes which slipped around in there, to get the set up squared away . . . but I hope that it works out.
Local Repeaters On Which You Might Find Me (K6DOB):
  • Big Bear K6BB 147.330+ PL: 131.8 - Keller Peak KE6TZG: 146.385+ PL: 146.2 - Sierra Peak KD6DDM 146.610- PL: 103.5

User avatar
DennisDawg
Posts: 240
Joined: Wed Mar 31, 2010 5:36 pm
Call Sign: K6DOB
Location: Placentia, CA

Re: Sierra Designs Baffin

#6

Post by DennisDawg » Sun Jul 31, 2011 8:48 pm

It finally made it out for a test and worked fine.

There is a moment of claustrophobia when you zip it up! But you get over it.

There is some condensation, but adjusting the side zippers got enough air in to make it go away.

The material used to seal the bivy from the inside feels wet. Its not, but it just feels funny. Not a big issue.

It does make the sleeping bad way warmer than its rating. This can be annoying but, years ago I bought these sleeping bag sheet liner things and this keeps the bivy off the skin and unzipping the bad allows for temperature control. It is was cold (or coldish) out, I’d just go with the bag, no liner.

It took 2 minutes to set up camp, maybe three to put is all away again. If you have room, you can leave the bag in the bivy.

I like less gear, spending less time messing with it, and have brought less and less for me over time . . . so this will work, not for every tip, but some.
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Local Repeaters On Which You Might Find Me (K6DOB):
  • Big Bear K6BB 147.330+ PL: 131.8 - Keller Peak KE6TZG: 146.385+ PL: 146.2 - Sierra Peak KD6DDM 146.610- PL: 103.5

gon2srf
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Re: Sierra Designs Baffin

#7

Post by gon2srf » Mon Aug 01, 2011 10:50 am

Deenis-

Glad you got out and got to experiment with your set up. Are you using any kind of sleeping pad? I don't see one in picture and by back is too tweaked to go without. I am looking at the Exped SynMat. www.exped.com
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DennisDawg
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Call Sign: K6DOB
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Re: Sierra Designs Baffin

#8

Post by DennisDawg » Mon Aug 01, 2011 11:15 am

I have a Therm-A-Rest Z Lite that I had planned to put under it, but I forgot and found on sandy soil, I did not need it. If there were rocks I could not avoid, I’d need it.

The pad does not fit will inside. So it would go under the bivy. But I do not like it because it takes up a lot of room or needs to go outside a pack, which annoys me . . . but . . . it is the best choice.

I have a Big Agnes Mummy inflatable mattress that use with my one man tent that fits in the bivy well, but takes up room that I want for me.
Local Repeaters On Which You Might Find Me (K6DOB):
  • Big Bear K6BB 147.330+ PL: 131.8 - Keller Peak KE6TZG: 146.385+ PL: 146.2 - Sierra Peak KD6DDM 146.610- PL: 103.5

User avatar
OLLIE
Posts: 2693
Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2008 7:31 am
Call Sign: K6JYB
Location: Sweet Home Alabama!!!

Re: Sierra Designs Baffin

#9

Post by OLLIE » Wed Aug 10, 2011 9:17 pm

Thanks for the update Dennis. I know the wet material feeling you are talking about. I can't stand that sensation. Even a nylon sleeping bag drives me crazy. I have a hiking trip cOming up and I may try a taco bivvy like we used in the service. It was make-shift but I remember it being comfortable. I'm not the age I was then but I'll try it out and see.
"OLLIE"
(K6JYB)


APRS
K6JYB ("BugEater")
K6JYB-7 (VX-8R)


http://www.facebook.com/FJOllie

"Some people live an entire lifetime and wonder if they have ever made a difference in the world, the Marines don't have that problem."
-Ronald Reagan


CHECK OUT THE OUTDOOR ADVENTURE USA AMATEUR RADIO NET:
Every Thursday night at 7:30pm PST

Repeater
146.385+ PL: 146.2 Keller Peak (Echolink Equipped)

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