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Winter camping

Discussion in 'Survival/Preparedness Forum' started by RWBlue, Oct 31, 2013.

  1. RWBlue


    Jan 24, 2004
    I haven't in a while. As stated before, as it gets cold/wet/nasty it is so easy for me sit inside warm and dry and work so I can play on nice days. I am just not a cold winter person, but I want this skill set.

    I use to hunt in a shack and I really didn't see any need in building a fire. But this was car camping. I took a lot more than I could carry.

    Now...I am thinking I will drive to a spot get on the bicycle. I will bicycle in away from people 5+ miles then setup camp. The worst part of this plan is I know I will get hot and sweaty in parts and other parts will be cold by the time I get to a camping site. There is just no way around it. The good part is I can still take more than I can carry, but not nearly as much as car camping.

    Besides just surviving while I am out there I will probably grab the camera and see what I can shoot.
  2. I Shooter

    I Shooter

    Dec 22, 2011
    The only camping I do in the winter is to hunt. As far as camping in the summer I take a travel trailer with me. It has AC and all the other things like home.

    For winter camping I use a four season ten, a flannel liner for my sleeping bag, and all sorts of light weight camping stuff.

    I hunt in Daniel Boon Forest in Kentucky. Last time I was there I had 4" of snow on the tent and wet boots. I had to hike to the truck and change my boots to stay in the hunt. After I got my feet warmed back up I was good to go.

    No problems with camping in the Winter if you can just stay dry. We get a lot of wet snows around that time of year. It may be twenty at night then go up to forty or better in the day time. It is best when it just gets cold and stays cold. You don't have to fight the wet that way.
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2013

  3. quake

    quake Millennium Member

    Aug 4, 1999
    Arkansas, USA
    If you're going to talk about uncle Dan'l, please spell his name correctly. :cool: (My 90-year-old dad still lives in kentucky.)
  4. I Shooter

    I Shooter

    Dec 22, 2011
    Please for give me I have always had problems spelling. I have people that live in Manchester and London Kentucky.
  5. quake

    quake Millennium Member

    Aug 4, 1999
    Arkansas, USA
    No forgiveness needed; hence the ":cool:" in my post. Just saw it as an excuse to toss out my (distant) relation to Daniel Boone.

    There's not a whole lot of nodes in my family tree that I'd brag about... :embarassed:
  6. RWBlue


    Jan 24, 2004
  7. AK_Stick

    AK_Stick AAAMAD

    Jan 20, 2004
    Alaska, again (for now)
    Good info there.

    Something else, when sleeping in the cold like that, boil some water, then put it back in your nalgene or what ever water bottle, and it will keep you warm for hours. Good trick for keeping the wife/gf going out with you. Do the same thing in the morning and you can put on a set of toasty warm boots.
  8. 757CC


    Jun 23, 2009
    I enjoy winter camping in the mountains. Plus the dogs love it. Last winter spent 5 nights tent camping in a state park. It was almost completely empty, besides the park ranger and one other hiker we had the park to ourselves. At night it got down into the single digits but the dogs kept me plenty warm. As long as you have the proper equipment it's great!
  9. UneasyRider

    UneasyRider C.D.B.

    Dec 1, 2005
    A good woman to share your tent... bag... with would be helpful.
  10. I camped a few times in the snow.
    Mostly my usual gear, plus bulky insulation, sleeping pad, more serious layers and stove.
    Some no-cook food in case of stove failure.

    Once at a slightly more civilized campground there were electrical outlets. Some guy knew about this, and added an electric blanket and some Christmas lights to his tent.
    Damn show-off.
  11. Gaiters are great for keeping snow out of boots, and keeping pant cuffs protected. Some are almost knee high, with Gortex.

    I agree, I'd rather be a bit colder and dry than deal with slush and mud, especially when cross-country skiing.
  12. TunaFisherman

    TunaFisherman Halibut Hunter

    Dec 10, 2009
    West of the East coast
  13. TK-421


    Oct 12, 2012
    Pflugerville, TX
    My winter camping gear is the same gear I use for summer stuff. I don't have a better tent, I don't have a thicker pad, I don't have a warmer bag. Whatever I need in the summer is all I need in the winter. Back when I used to camp a lot, when I lived in Illinois, the only thing I did different was wear a hat at night to keep my ears warm. Even when it was the teens at night and there was several inches of snow on the ground, I didn't need a sleeping bag warmer than the 40-50* bag I had, and I didn't need a pad bigger than the cheap crappy pad you buy at walmart, that is like 1/2" thick. Maybe I'm just good at dealing with the cold better, since I sleep a lot better when it's cold out. Heck it's been in the low 40s a night or two, and those are the nights I sleep with the window open to try and cool my room down.
  14. Lone Kimono

    Lone Kimono

    Jul 15, 2009
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2013
  15. RWBlue


    Jan 24, 2004
    What kind? (thin nylon, thick poly)
    How do you use it?
  16. glock_collector


    Dec 23, 2011
    Snowshoed in about 3 mi in waist deep snow, the fluffy kind...a$hitload of work. The nights were about -10 below, in only the clothes we wore walking, no bags, heater your research you'll do fine.
  17. garyjandfamily


    Dec 11, 2007
    After three decades of wilderness winter skiing and snowshoeing experience (like Kings Peak, the highest mountain in Utah - on New Years Day! Twice!), here are some tips:

    1. Sleeping Pads. No matter what you are sleeping on (ground, snow or even a cot), it's cold underneath you! And even though your sleeping bag is nice and fluffy and insulating over you, it's squashed under you. So the pad that puts a layer of insulating air between you and what's under you is critical. I like Thermarest pads.
    2. Any insulation will keep warm things warm and cold things cold. So if you go to bed cold, it'll take a long time to warm up that sleeping bag. So take a brisk walk, do jumping jacks, whatever you need to do, but DON'T GO TO BED COLD!
    3. I always sleep in thin thermal underwear. It adds a few degrees to the bag rating, and I sleep better if I don't have to worry about cold spots in the bag. And it makes it 100x easier to get up and out in the morning!
    4. And now for a secret of the ages, a trick that only Master Winter Campers know. There is nothing worse in this world (well - there are a few things - but they have been outlawed by the Geneva Convention) than getting all settled in your sleeping bag, warm and cozy in the cold winter weather, and having to get up and partially dressed and slog out into the cold and snow to take a wizz! And when you return your bag is icy again and you have to get it warmed up again. The master secret is this - I always have an empty one-liter wide-mouthed pop bottle near my sleeping bag. It is well marked and a different shape than my water bottles. So there is no mistaking it, even in the dark. Makes the midnight trip to the urinal much shorter! (I always use a Mountain Dew bottle if I'm camping with the Boy Scouts. The expression on their faces when I dump it into a snow drift in the morning is priceless!!)

    So there are a few hints! Maybe I'll post some photos tonight and add some more hints if I think of any...
  18. RWBlue


    Jan 24, 2004
    I have been looking for one of those for a long time...
  19. RWBlue


    Jan 24, 2004
  20. 20South


    Nov 18, 2002
    East of CBUS
    I agree with you. I've done 14ers with professionals and their advice was along these lines. I have a zero degree bag and when we had wind chill in single digits I was out of my gear tucked away nice and warm. Had I stayed even in my base layer, I would have been a sweaty disaster. That was a more extreme time in my life, and I tend to not camp outdoors in snow by choice.