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Photos Modifying the MSS gortex bivy for hammock camping

Sep 18, 2020
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I have a ton of ideas all the time of how to get around gear problems I encounter, or to just generally improve my current system that I dont see anywhere else on the internet. I intend to write guides for all of these in the near future. Problem is, writing these big long posts obviously includes spending long periods on my phone and I have an aversion to that. I'll try to increase my posting, and I'm sorry for the long gaps in between posts. Onto the mod

My two favorite pieces of gear are easily my tennier industries bivy and my hammock. The gortex of the bivy has a 28,000 mm test, when 10,000 is considered fully waterproof. I've never had any issues of water leaking through, and the durability is unmatched. Add on the camo and small size it and it's the perfect stealth camping shelter. Stealth camping is just about all we do so I find this to be the gold standard for every hobo.

For general lounging, a hammock is a godsend. I use a "madera outdoors" ultralight hammock that I believe was like 40 bucks.

The problem is that I could never sleep in it in rain. I don't carry a tarp, and dont want to sacrifice the weight, space, cost, visibility, and setup time of using one. The least thing I want to do at the end of the day is fiddle around with tent stakes and guy lines. If I put my bivy in the hammock, the hammock gets completely soaked, and I've fallen out nearly every time I've tried getting in it. Here's the solution:

Cut a slit at the bottom footbox of the bivy below the seam about this far across.

Yeah my slit is very crude but I'm a hobo not a fucking seamstress.

Then, cut a box like hole at the head below the velcro about this size.

Then lay your hammock out, put your sleeping pad in the hammock and thread one loop of your hammock through the fresh hole in the head of the bivy and string up that side to a tree. Then take the other side of the hammock and string it through the bottom of the bivy and arrange the hammock and pad so they're sitting well inside. Dont string this side to a tree

Twist the foot end of the hammock like this until it is stopped by the pad.

Fold it back on itself like this and make a normal loop.

You now have an attachment point for the hammock but have added a knot below it.


I use paracord to string up my bivy. The system is designed to be used with this. You can find a billion tutorials on the internet on how to do this

The head is the main point of possible leakage. By cutting the box cut beneath the velcro, we can wrap the "hood" of the bivy around the carabiner and seal of any rain

Without the knot of the bottom of the hammock, it would be like a ramp leading into your bivy for rain to flow. I found that you can pull the bivy over the knot we made to seal it off.

Next, when sleeping with a thick sleeping pad I found that it compressed the footbox of the bivy to the point where my sleeping bag would be impaired. To fix this, pull the end of the pad fully through the hole of the bivy's footbox an inch or two. To fix the ramp issue wrap a raincoat or poncho around the "ramp"

Here's what it looks like all finished

Finally, I found that the bivy droops below the hammock like this

With a metric ton of fiddling, you can actually fit your pack and boots in this "compartment" and still zip the bivy. I'm working on it, but right now it constricts the area your put the pack in quite a bit. A sleeping bag is pretty much useless if used like this. At the very least you can keep your boots dry this way, but I'm working on getting the pack in there. Some retard left their dogs shit in the park and it got literally all over my gear and boots. Cleaning this off is a bitch and a half.

PS: This took a load of trial and error and I'm hyped that it actually worked. Haven't found anybody else doing this with a bivy, but it works like a charm. Since the slit is at the bottom of the footbox it still works just as well on the ground as in the hammock. Hope you find some use out of this
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Nola Nick

Mar 9, 2014
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I actually wondered about this as well as I can’t usually sleep in a hammock for long periods of time but having a bivy has always been helpful.
Thanks for the share.

Yeah it’s a tough call. I really like the bivy/tarp combo I have cause of it’s great stealth cover in just about any situation. Hammocks are nice to get off the ground especially when you have the space and time to chill and stretch out. I agree it’s nice to have both but usually going to choose one or the other depending on what I’m doing. Cool, that your experimenting to find what works best for you.

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