When you’re out battling the elements, damp gear and water hitting your face, is the last thing you need. Whether you’re on a military mission, an adventurous bushcraft expedition, or simply stealth camping in the wilderness, managing condensation is a crucial part of your exercise.
Understanding your enemy – How Bivi condensation is created:
Under the right circumstances, the culprit—condensation—can infiltrate even the most well-engineered shelter. The average human exhales up to 1 litre of moisture while asleep. When you breathe, warm air contacts the cold surface of your bivi, therefore causing condensation. A similar effect occurs when your car windows fogs up. For example, when it is cold outside, the warm air vapor inside a heated car contacts the windows. This causes beads of water to form on the interior side of the glass. While it’s impossible to eliminate it entirely, the following key strategies will help to minimise it & can help make your week out field better.
What steps can you take:
1. Scout for the Perfect Campsite:
Selecting the right location for your bivi is the first step towards combating condensation. Look for elevated ground with good air circulation, away from water sources and low-lying areas. Dense vegetation can also provide natural cover and help mitigate excess moisture. The air under trees tends to be warmer (as opposed to say, a wide-open field) so your will be warm. In addition, condensation happens on top of their foliage, instead of on your bivi.
2. Recon the Weather:
Stay one step ahead of Mother Nature by monitoring weather conditions before setting up camp. Keep an eye on temperature, humidity, and wind patterns. Understanding the forecast will help you anticipate potential condensation issues and prepare accordingly.
3. Bivi Set Up and Configuration:
Deploying your bivi strategically can make a world of difference in reducing condensation buildup. Make good use of your bivi’ s ventilation options, such as keeping multiple vents and mesh panels open. Position these openings to maximize airflow and create a cross-ventilation system that will keep moisture at bay.
4. Master the Art of setting up a tarp:
Utilize tactical tarp setups to create a protective barrier between your bivi and the ground. This technique not only shields your tent from moisture seeping through the floor but also helps regulate temperature. By adding a groundsheet, you can further enhance insulation and prevent dampness from entering your shelter.
5. Gear Up with Moisture-Wicking Equipment:
Equip yourself with moisture-wicking gear to combat condensation from within. Opt for sleeping bags, clothing, and sleeping pads made from breathable materials that effectively wick away moisture. This will not only enhance your comfort but also minimize the amount of condensation inside your bivi or tent.
6. Employ Tactical Drying Techniques:
A proactive approach is key. Take advantage of breaks in the weather to dry out your gear. Hang wet clothing and gear outside your tent during the day, utilizing trees or improvised drying lines. If time is of the essence, employ quick-drying techniques like wringing out excess moisture or using absorbent towels. After you’ve been caught in a sudden downpour, it is crucial to dry your clothes and shoes outside the tent as soon as you can. Bringing damp garments inside the bivi will only increase humidity, resulting in both wet clothes and a soggy bivi. Instead, opt for hanging your clothes outside under a sturdy tarp to ensure efficient drying and maintain a dry and comfortable shelter.
7. Be Prepared with Condensation Countermeasures:
Pack essential gear to combat condensation in your tactical arsenal. Include microfiber towels, moisture-absorbing packets, and a portable dehumidifier. These tools will help you combat condensation on the go, ensuring that your shelter remains dry and comfortable even in the harshest of conditions.
By implementing these strategies, you’ll be well-prepared to conquer bivi condensation in the wild. Remember, staying vigilant and proactive is the key to maintaining a dry and comfortable shelter, allowing you to focus on the mission at hand and conquer the great outdoors with confidence.