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Winterize Your Camping Site and Habits

by Richard White II December 31, 2018

Tips to take with you when the winter snow flies in camp.

Equipment

  • Consider using a sled to drag extra-heavy winter pack
  • Bring a shovel to build wind barriers or snow shelters; compress entire camp area with boots for smooth sleeping and cooking
  • Bring repair kit for ripped packs or tents: Wrap duct tape around ski poles for storage; bring heavy thread and needles; spare pole basket; wire and pliers to fix snowshoes

Setting up camp

  • Face tent toward morning sun but only if away from blowing wind and snow
  • Anchor tent guy lines with snowshoes, buried tent stakes, sticks, or a loop around a packed mound of snow (bollard)
  • When snowing, even overnight, tap on tent walls; dig out tent sides to prevent collapse

Sleeping

  • Keep water bottles thawed at the bottom of your sleeping bag overnight
  • Consider a vapor barrier liner for your sleeping bag (this will keep in heat with your body moisture). Lowers bag rating by 10 degrees, but must wear a non-cotton base layer to wick moisture from the skin
  • Use extra foam sleeping pad under your regular pad at night
  • Go on a mini-hike before bed to raise body temperature

Miscellaneous

  • Keep batteries in your inner pocket to prevent freezing.
  • Change to dry underlayers before bed
  • Rehydrate often to stay warm; evaporation of sweat lets you forget you need water



Richard White II
Richard White II

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