7 Tips to Survive Cold-Weather Camping
The full moon makes the snow-draped forest shine, and until summertime camper’s come back you have plenty of time and space all to yourself.
But when you go a winter camping it’s requires more thought and planning than an average summer camping. Peter Kummerfeldt, a wilderness survival expert who run different survival courses and the owner of the company, OutdoorSafe, has camped out in minus 45 F temperatures when he was working for the Air Force Survival School in Alaska. His winter camping and survival tips can help any camper to navigate in extreme conditions.
First Tip Dress Properly
You will want to take clothes that can keep you warm you stay static for long periods of time. Most of the chances are you'll create a lot of heat when trekking, but it's harder to high temperature that will be comfortable when you are not trekking.
Use the onion method and layer up. The first layer should be polyester thermal underwear. Try and to choose breathable fabric to prevent the accumulation of perspiration during effort. If you rather natural fibers, use merino wool and wool-fleece blends they won’t be as itchy but keep you worm enough. Take with you a scarf or neck warmer that will be easy to take off to control your body temperature, also pack a lightweight jacket that is both breathable and waterproof.
If you use this method you can also keep your feet and head warm. Fleece or wool caps can be windproof if you cover them with a detachable hood. Don’t use cotton socks, you can leave those at home. Instead, go with wool socks or polyester socks that are designed for trekking and hiking. Also you will need to have good boots, boots don't have to be too expensive, but you need them to be water-repellent or even better waterproof, especially if you are planning on hiking through snow.
Never Neglect Your Hands
To keep those fingers warm, use polyester glove liners and gloves, and then layer over them some gauntlets too. Also a good thing to take with you is some chemical heating pads for the rough times you really need a heat boost.
When you get at your campsite, first thing you need to do is start a fire. You should always plan ahead and pack fire sources. Go low-tech and tightly pack dried lint stuffed in a pill bottles, or you can go high-tech and get magnesium fire starters.
Choose the Right Campsite
When you go summer camping you might prefer the shadiest and the most secluded spot. When going winter camping, the morning sun can be a welcome companion. Pay attention of where the sun will appear at sunrise, place your tent in a way that you will get the early rays to heat you and on the other hand protect you from the wind.
Drink a Lot, Dehydration Is a Real Problem Even at winter
When it’s cold most of the chances you won’t feel thirsty, but dehydration is a big problem in winter as it is in summer. Drink a lot of water hot or cold. Also drink hot tea, coffee or hot chocolate it will also provide calories.
When you breathe in a warm tent in a cold night, remember condensation will form on your tent, even if it’s the best four-season tent. Get ready for it to "snow" on you in the morning. There's nothing you can do about it, but in the next morning dry your sleeping bag so you use it again at night. You can prevent it if vent your tent at night it won’t be that warm at night but at least it will keep you dry.
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