The world can divided into two groups of people: those who camp and those who don’t. Maybe that’s oversimplifying things. Maybe its three groups: those who wouldn’t be caught dead in a tent; those who camp and those who winter camp. The last group of people doesn’t usually consist of those campers that pack the SUV full of s’mores ingredients, their three kids, a dog and their Hello Kitty sleeping bags and head on out to the nearest campground. Winter campers are a whole different breed and they look at even sleeping outdoors as something they can use to challenge themselves mentally, physically and even spiritually. They can’t just camp like the rest of us. They camp when the majority of us shiver just looking at the mountains. How do they do it? By following a few simple tips. Being cold weather fans ourselves, which compelled us create the world’s best cold weather face mask. We have compiled a few of these tips for winter camping that should keep you somewhat warm.
- Pack extra hats and gloves. No matter how careful you think you’ll be, you are bound to lose one or the other. Don’t risk exposure or frostbite by not having protection always on hand (pun intended).
- Wear fireproof clothing. Sitting in close proximity to your campfire, you’re likely to come in contact with flying embers which leave tiny burns in your clothing. Wool is resistant to these embers and also is a great natural material that keeps the wearer warm and cozy.
- Remember your sleeping pad. Because of conductive heat, having an effective barrier between you and the ground will keep you warmer overall then any sleeping bag on its own will. Make sure that your pad has an R value of four or more.
- Sleep with your boots. If you have removable liners in your boots, stuff these in the bottom of your sleeping bag at night to keep them from freezing. If your boots are of the single layer variety, put the entire pair in a waterproof sack and plan on sleeping with them. Frozen shoes can be downright deadly, allowing hypothermia to quickly set in.
For more great info on winter camping, check out Active Weekender's article "How Do We Lose Heat While Camping And How To Prevent It"