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Bothy Bag - SP-004 Today


#1

Outside:

Inside Bothy Bag:

13 degrees C difference. Bean [sic] meaning to do this test for so long.

No Mr Bean antics required to pack it away either. 30 seconds.

73

Richard
G3CWI


#2

In reply to G3CWI:

I bought a bothy bag quite a number of years ago when I first started out with SOTA. I’ve used the bag a lot recently for my activations. If the weather allows, I use the bag as a ground sheet to keep my stuff off the wet ground.

I find the bothy bag particularly good for CW operations, voice modes can suffer from the noise generated by the fabric flapping around in the wind.

I find condensation is a major problem due to the temperature difference between inside and out. I’ve noticed that the condensation has frozen on some of my activations and caused an internal snow storm! The solution apparently is to turn the bag inside out every so often, but I guess this would only work if the outside was drier than the inside!

There’s no doubt that these kind of shelters offer a source of warmth for very little volume and weight. The price to warmth ratio is also a major plus.

I can still manage some Mr Bean moments on a windy day with my bag, goodness knows how I’ve managed to not let it blow away on some occasions!

Here is a link to a video showing a recent bothy bag activation on Whernside NP-004 (twinned with SP-004?). The video shows my sked on 40m with G3XQE. http://youtu.be/JcEq6rXzdg4

73, Colin, M0CGH


#3

In reply to G3CWI:
Totally agree. Superb way to get out of the weather and make for a comfortable activation (or just lunch sometimes).

I’ve carried one for safety reasons for years.

73
Gerald
2W0GDA


#4

In reply to 2W0GDA:
Here in Victoria, Australia we always take our own specially shaped version for search and rescue in the bush, have done so for many years - capable of sitting four rescuers plus the patient lying down between them, as Gerald says great for lunch, esp when exposed above the snowline in 20-30kn of wind

Rik
VK3KAN


#5

In reply to M0CGH:

I too have had the Bothy Bag snow storm! Feels like being inside one of those snow-scene paperweights that you shake to get the snow effect. My current Bothy Bag has two velcro vents at the top which I need to experiment with using.

While they are not as comfortable as a tent in some respects (certainly a tent you can sit up in), they are a lot smaller, lighter, quicker and easier to use. My test yesterday was interesting: I will be trying it out again in different conditions. Yesterday it appeared that the reduction in windchill and the retained heat contributed in approximately equal measure to the improvement. In different conditions, this balance will vary.

I should declare a commercial interest here of course but my perceptions are backed by a great many with no such interests.

73

Richard
G3CWI


#6

In reply to G3CWI:

effect. My current Bothy Bag has two velcro vents at the top which I
need to experiment with using.

In my opinion the vents should fully open unless it is raining/snowing in. There could be also a risk of asphyxia in such closed bags. Obviously no smoking or fire inside.

73, Jaakko OH7BF/F5VGL


#7

In reply to F5VGL:

Hi Jaakko

I am guessing that you have never used/seen a Bothy Bag? They are not closed and indeed cant be closed in a way that would make them air-tight - less airtight than zipping up a tent for example. The minute risk of asphixiation (which I have never seen mentioned before) is greatly outweighed by the increased safety factor that they provide in terms of improved shelter. Correct use of the vents can make them more comfortable, that is certainly true.

73

Richard
G3CWI


#8

In reply to G3CWI:
Hi Richard;

I too have never seen a bothy bag, after reading Tom M1EYP’s activation reports I tried to visualise what they looked like and if what Colin M0CGH is using is a bothy bag then I got it completely wrong.

I had a look at the Sotapoles web site but there are no pictures other than the carrier bag, perhaps some pictures of the inside and outside with the walking pole guying might be usefull to others ??

I am also a bit perplexed about the etymology of the name “bothy”, perhaps you can enlighten those of us that participate in SOTA from the comfort of a nice warm snow free shack :slight_smile:

73 de Ken G3XQE


#9

In reply to G3XQE:

http://www.cheaptents.com/images/advice/bothy/terra-nova-bothy-bag.gif

…I like this bit:
“A bothy was also a semi-legal drinking den…”

73

Richard
G3CWI


#10

In reply to G3CWI:

Thanks for that Richard, most enlightening, I can now see why they became known as “Bothy Bags”

Perhaps you should add some of those folding entrenching tools that the forces used to be issued with as accessories “for burying the excrement” :slight_smile:

73 de Ken G3XQE


#11

Hi Ken,

On the following webpage, is a picture of M3EYP (now M0HGY) and myself (M1EYP) activating The Cheviot G/SB-001, in a bothy bag, in poor wx in 2006. Jim G0CQK took the photo.

http://tomread.co.uk/the_cheviot.htm

While on this next webpage, there is a photo taken inside a bothy bag, for an early morning (pre-dawn) activation of Agnew’s Hill GI/AH-005 (Antrim Hills, Northern Ireland), in poor wx, Christmas Eve 2011.

http://tomread.co.uk/agnew's.htm

Tom M1EYP


#12

In reply to M1EYP:
Thanks Richard and Tom for all the interesting info.

My previous perception of a Bothy bag was a heavy duty sleeping bag sized plastic sack with some sort of hood to cover the head.

I now can perceive it as a tent without poles being supported by the inhabitants.

I hope this may have been useful to others like my self who are not outdoor types.

73 de Ken G3XQE


#13

In reply to G3XQE:

I now can perceive it as a tent without poles being supported by the
inhabitants.

That’s a good way of describing a Bothy Bag! I may well steal it.

Cheers

Richard


#14

In reply to G3CWI:

Hi Richard;
Before I am accused of plagiarism, the description of the Bothy Bag should be attributed to Colin M0CGH from a discussion off reflector, although he referred to his shelter a a “survival shelter” and not a bothy bag.

I am sure he won’t mind if you steal the it :slight_smile:

Ken


#15

In reply to G3XQE:

My previous perception of a Bothy bag was a heavy duty sleeping bag
sized plastic sack with some sort of hood to cover the head.

As you’ve realised, that’s a bivvy not a bothy. A good bivvy bag (goretex style fabric rather than a non-breathable plastic bag) is a great way to sleep outdoors - as long as you accept the central tennet of bivvying that you can be either cold or dry, not both :slight_smile: I’ve spent many happy nights out in the open, looking straight up at the stars. The only time I really questioned what I was doing was one morning when I woke up in a forest, ran my fingers through my hair and found it full of slugs :frowning: I always carry a bivvy bag when I’m in remote areas, coupled with an ultralight 1 season sleeping bag the total weight is less than a kilo and I can sleep comfortably anywhere.

Ronald Turnbull’s book is a good read on the subject for anyone who loves the outdoors. There are a few pages of useful information, then a lot of reminiscences.


#16

In reply to G7GCR:

That chap Turnbull has a lot to answer for.



73

Richard
G3CWI


#17

In reply to G3CWI:
My understanding is that someone by the name of Bothy in the UK developed an emergency shelter. It now appears to have become a generic term

In my version, as per the photo, I can use skis in each corner instead of a person and then tie it down using external cords. A friend has a version with a zip in the side as well

I am planning to always take my bothy when on SOTA during the winter

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/65808111/alpineSAR%20Ftop%20Training%20Aug12%20RH%20006a.JPG

Rik
VK3KAN


#18

In reply to VK3KAN:
Hi Rik,

I’ve a slightly different story, the first bit of which I know is true for sure.

The original “tent without poles” emergency shelter made from nylon flysheet material was made by Karrimor many years ago under the trade acronym KISU (Kiss-oo). Which stood for Karrimor International/Instructor Survival Unit.

You will still hear people in Britain use that “word”, but most people have forgotten where it came from. Mike Parsons who ran Karrimor (when it was a family business) is a friend of a friend.

The second bit I am less sure of, but I believe this bit is true.

When other tent manufacturers, principally Wild Country, that went on to become Terra Nova, wanted to make their own “tent without poles” they couldn’t use the KISU name for obvious reasons and I believe this is when the term Bothy Bag was coined. To this day Terra Nova use that term as their official marketing name for “tent without poles” emergency shelters.

I’m sure someone older and wiser will than me will correct any of this that I have wrong.

73
Gerald
2W0GDA


#19

In reply to VK3KAN:

In reply to G3CWI:
My understanding is that someone by the name of Bothy in the UK
developed an emergency shelter. It now appears to have become a
generic term

A bothy in the 19th century was a small cottage with basic or even primitive facilities provided for the use of estate workers and gardeners. The name seems to derive from both a Welsh and a Gaelic word for a small hut or cottage but “both” and “booth” in Norse and Old English respectively had a similar meaning. Thus the word “bothy” has considerable ancestry!

73

Brian G8ADD


#20

In reply to G7GCR:

The only time I really questioned what I was doing was one morning when I woke up in a forest, ran my fingers through my hair and found it full of slugs<

Checkout my bivi tent on http://www.qrz.com GM4COX. No slugs in my hair - thinking about it no hair? Great night’s sleep on a lovely carpet of moss as shown in the fot-ay!

Cheers

Jack (;>J
GM4COX