To follow up on my previous article entitled “My Poncho Upgrade” I decided to spend a night in the woods using my poncho as a shelter. The fiberglass “X” frame mounted inside converted the rain gear into a shallow dome tent.
I carry this in my Bug-Out-Bag (BOB) along with a sheet of water intrusion barrier material that I use for a ground cloth. I don’t carry a mattress so I selected a spot that had a layer of leaves that I hoped would be sufficient to provide enough thermal insulation from the ground in addition to some degree of comfort to lay on. It was also quite flat as I try to avoid an inclined surface to sleep on.
For the most part I laid on my side with my knees bent as if sitting on an imaginary chair. Alternatively I would straighten my legs and sleep on my back. Because it wasn’t raining I knew that I could afford to poke my feet out from under the shelter if needed but I could have changed from a sitting position to a “V” position if needed to be completely covered.
The “X” frame inside provided a nice place to hang my key chain light, but my smart phone provided plenty of light when needed inside the shelter. I moved my pocket knife from my side to a more comfortable position in my shirt pocket with the added benefit of quick access if needed. I also used a bug net over my head at night, keeping it extended out from my face. As an added bug/critter repellant I rubbed tea tree oil on my ankles, wrists, neck, and forehead.
The only thing that I used that I don’t currently carry in my BOB was a down sleeping bag. This causes me to rethink my strategy and perhaps consider preparing different BOBs based on the circumstances that would necessitate my emergency egress.