When choosing an ultralight backpacking bivy sack, you need to think about its weight, durability, how well it handles different weather, and how easy it is to set up.
Our helpful TOP 5 guide is here to make sure you can pick the best bivy for your adventure.
Weight: 11.9 ounces (340g)
Material: 20D nylon ripstop
❌ No zipper
The ultralight Pro Bivy from MSR is tailor-made for experienced ultralight backpackers. Ideal for tight spaces where tents can’t fit, it’s super lightweight for quick journeys.
The bivy boasts weatherproof fabric to prevent condensation, and its waterproof coating keeps you dry during alpine challenges.
Just remember, this bivy doesn’t have a zipper closure. It’s a handy tool for those who want minimalistic shelter on their outdoor quests.
Weight: 18.6 ounces (528g)
Material: proprietary nylon fabric
✅ Side zip for easy entry
✅ Excellent in bad weather
❌ Not for someone over 6 feet
The ultralight Alpine AscentShell Bivy by Outdoor Research offers a blend of lightweight durability and comfort.
Designed for solo adventurers, it’s crafted from Pertex and breathable waterproof AscentShell, promising a cozy shelter for all your journeys.
Although it might not suit those over six feet tall, its innovative features like step-in opening and extra head space make it a convenient choice for alpine exploration and extreme conditions.
Weight: 23.3 ounces (660 grams)
Material: proprietary fabric (NanoShield)
✅ Great headroom
❌ Needs additional seam sealing
The ultralight Black Diamond Spotlight bivy from Diamond Equipment caters to minimalists who appreciate added comfort.
With a single DAC Featherlite pole for more head and shoulder room, it offers convenience with a spacious zippered entry and mesh panel for great airflow.
The proprietary NanoShield fabric ensures year-round performance. Keep in mind that while the bottom is sealed, you’ll need to apply seam sealer for the rest if desired.
Weight: 18.9 ounces (538 grams)
Material: nylon ripstop
✅ Great in bad weather
✅ Small pack size
The Three Wire Hooped Bivy from Big Agnes provides protection against extreme weather without adding extra weight.
Crafted with premium materials for year-round usage, it includes a breathable mesh window for enhanced comfort.
Taped seams, breathable fabric, and lightweight poles contribute to its practicality. While it doesn’t offer warmth, it excels at reducing condensation.
Weight: 15.8 ounces (448 grams)
Material: 30D nylon ripstop
✅ Small pack size
✅ Relatively affordable
❌ Entrance opening can sag
The ultralight Helium Bivy from Outdoor Research stands out with its award-winning design and upgraded durability, thanks to the use of Helium fabric and Diamond Fuse technology.
Crafted for fast and light adventures, this clamshell opening bivy is favored by ultralight backpackers due to its dependable performance.
While the outer shell entrance opening might sag a bit, a simple clip can help keep it elevated.
Choosing a bivy over a regular tent for camping involves a trade-off between portability and comfort. If you are unsure about the pros and cons of bivys, check out our post here.
Bivys, originally designed for climbers, are now popular among adventurers seeking a minimalist approach.
Before making your decision think of:
Carefully balancing these key elements will allow you to select the lightest, most packable bivy shelter with sufficient weather protection, comfort, and bug defenses for your needs.