The New Fox Frontier
It’s been a long time coming, but Fox’s new bivvy is worth the wait…
When you’ve been in the bivvy game as long as Fox, and produced some of the most iconic shelters along the way, you can occasionally afford to take a step back and send your finest product designers away on a mission. Five years ago, Fox’s boffins were pulled to one side and given the task of creating ‘the angler’s ultimate bivvy’ - and this is the result. Bearing the name of a previous Fox bivvy with a similarly eye-catching design from years gone by, the Frontier is a range of thoroughly modern top-end shelters. Here we take a look at the biggest of the new trio: the XD.
1. Unique boss
At the heart of the Frontier bivvy range is a unique new boss from which the supporting ribs splay out. Known as the Easy Tensioning System (ETS), it has a lightweight and reinforced aluminium skeleton for durability. In conjunction with the keyed elbow joints on the poles, set-up is lightning fast without any frame twisting. Tensioning and locking the frame in place is also very simple with the three short ribs over the door.
2. Luxury material
Fox’s VenTec fabric is one of the best on the market, so it’s no surprise it’s deployed here. It’s tough and durable, but also very breathable and supremely waterproof. It has a hydrostatic-head rating of 20,000mm, which is as good as it gets for waterproofing. It’s also lined on the inside of the bivvy with a khaki laminate which reduces light penetration to keep you cooler in the warmer months.
3. Flat back, high frame
The design of all three new Frontier bivvies is built around a flat back and a relatively high roof to maximise internal space. Beds can be pushed right to the back of the shelter to open up as much space at the front as possible, while the increased headroom makes it comfortable to sit and watch the water without stooping. The XD takes these principles to the max, with a height of 1.65m metres and a depth of 2.10m.
4. Inner dome
The only Frontier bivvy to feature an inner dome is the XD. This detachable capsule, with a zip in/out groundsheet offers greater insulation and protection from condensation and insects. The inner dome has four mozzy-mesh windows which line up with the external vents if you want increased airflow. It is made from 100 percent polyester and weighs 2.3kg. When fixed in place, the total usable inner space is the same as the mid-sized Frontier X model.
5. Vents all round
Every single panel on the XD can be opened up in some form to provide cooling air flow. As is now standard in the industry, there are two giant vents at the rear, but Fox have also included two more - one on either side. With the front door open, a cooling breeze can enter from any direction. The vents have a camo mozzy mesh and can also be propped open at the bottom for fresh air during wet weather.