Choosing a fishing bivvy nowdays is a hard decision. There are numerous available on the market in all shapes and sizes, how can you decide on a high quality one? Below is a summary of determining elements I utilized when I bought mine.
Things to consider;
How bulky is the carp bivvy? Will you manage to transport it within a rod holdall, or are you going to have to use a carp barrow! This is often a deciding factor, since some locations may involve climbing over stiles or even wings.
How fast are you able to set up the bivvy? This has always been something I have put at the top of my list. Nothing's worse than spending a long time setting up, while you could be catching fish.
The more recent style of fishing bivvy the 'TFG Force 8' can easily be setup within twenty seconds, great in the event that it begins pouring down with rain. Just how simple is it to get in and out, is the door on the fishing bivvy a struggle? Can you easily get the door open in a hurry, especially in the night? Is there anything to trip over, such as a raised lip to the bottom of the bivvy?
Has it got enough room? Most fishing bivvies come in 1 man and 2 man versions but with the added cost, for the latter. Will you fit all your gear in? Will you fit in all your gear for a week long session?
Is there enough visibility? Not a major issue when carp fishing, but always handy to be able to keep an eye on your gear, especially if the rains lashing down or it's blowing a gale. Having a see through door or front windows can be handy here.
Does the bivvy work well in summer? Does it stay cool? Fishing bivvies can get really hot in summer. Bivvies made out of a thin material soak up the heat converting the bivvy into an oven, especially if they are singled skinned. Excellent air flow, whether it is, vents within the ceiling or rear window flaps, can all assist in improving ventilation. Having decent headroom plays a part in helping circulate the air.
Does the fishing bivvy perform in winter? Being warm is really a main concern whenever fishing the cold winter months months. A hefty material will assist in improving insulation but will increase the overall weight, the same goes for double skin bivvies. And also they generally do not have windows, so visibility can be hindered.
Can it withstand strong winds? Lightweight fishing bivvies simply are not capable of withstanding gale force winds. This can be a problem especially in the middle of the night.
How easy is it to clean? Can the groundsheet or the inner be removed? This will make the process of cleaning your kit so much easier.
Companies such as Fox, Nash, JRC, Trakker all make good quality fishing bivvies that cater for any budget. Doing a bit of research before hand will ensure you purchase the correct one. The fox bivvy along with the nash bivvy are my preferred choice, but are also the most expensive.
Purchasing a fishing bivvy is a personal choice. People fish in different locations, fish different swims, and have to over come different obstacles. All these determining factors need to be taken into consideration before putting your hand in your wallet.