Winter camping is quite bit different than summer ventures.
With snow and bone chilling cold it can be a real survival trip.
Here are my 8 tips that will make your winter camping trip quite enjoyable.
Layering is the only fool-proof way to keep you comfortable in changing weather. If your coat is too warm and you break a sweat you are in a bad place. The sweat moisture will zap any insulating abilities your clothing usually has. Take layers off when warm and add layers when cold. The old woodsman’s saying “if you sweat you die” is the truth. Never sweat in cold weather. Let your clothing layers allow you to stay comfortable.
Wool is your best friend
My good friend wool is as useful as it was centuries ago for the outdoorsman. Those red buffalo plaid heavy wool hunting coats your grandfather wore will still keep you nice and toasty when the thermometer drops. Nothing like a vintage look and warmth to boot.
Your extremities are the first to get cold
Hands, feet, ears and noses are in deep trouble from frostbite. Keep them covered and warm.
Shelter from wind, sleet, ice and snow
A proper shelter is especially vital in the winter time for camping. Hypothermia is a real threat that can strike any camper down without proper shelter. Stay warm and dry with a good winter tent or shelter.
Deep freeze rated sleeping bag and camping ground pad
The cold moisture coming up from the ground is bad new. Even a warm sleeping bag will be cold if not insulated from the ground. Use a thick ground cloth and a camping ground pad to keep the cold ground from ruining your slumber. Always use a quality low temperature rated sleeping bag which will serve you better than a cheap discount store variety bag. Quality is certainly worth the price for a warm sleeping bag.
The winter camper’s friend is fire. Sure it might not be completely necessary if you are dressed well and have good winter camping insulated gear. It is however a morale boost and a great way to stay warm and enjoy the camping trip. Keep it smaller and manageable so you can cozy in instead of a roaring too hot bonfire.
Hot beverages and meals
Nothing beats warming up with a hot meal and a hot drink. You are essentially warming up your core which equates to better heat management. The taste of such a hot treat in the winter campsite should not be underestimated.
Don’t forget the marshmallows!
Bring the marshmallows and any treat that the kids and grown ups alike love. The great Nessmuk wrote about smoothing it in the wilderness instead of roughing it. Remember this should be an enjoyable trip and not a life threatening horrible trip. Enjoy your outing and let that stress just melt away like the snow away from your campfire ring.
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