Cold Weather Camping Tips: The Complete Guide for The Winter Camper

Cold Weather Camping Tips: The Complete Guide for The Winter Camper

The tips for camping in cold climates are useful when you decide to pack and leave for a camping trip in the snow. Why not? Winter is when the snow-covered mountain shines in the moonlight and when the campers retire, which gives you extra space for yourself and your company. Backpacking in the snow also attracts because there is beauty, pristine and tranquility in the wonderland of winter, with no bugs, mosquitoes and crowds to contend with, at least as a minimum.

Cold camping requires a little more planning than the usual camp, since the extremity of the climate can be uncomfortable and pose a danger (think of an avalanche, the fall of tree branches, strong winds …). However, with a little preparation, you will be surprised how you will feel comfortable and you will be safe.

Keep your body dry and warm

Coming out of the cold and definitely staying one or two nights there, you will feel extremely cold (and may even suffer hypothermia if you do not wear the right clothes). Must be able to wear clothes with layers that can absorb moisture, dry quickly, resist water, breathe and isolate.

Cold Weather Camping Tips: The Complete Guide for The Winter Camper

You can adjust the clothes in layers according to the level of heat you need. In general, you will need …

  • The base layer is your underwear, particularly synthetic fabrics or merino wool because of its ability to evacuate the perspiration of the skin and reach the outer layers. And because they dry quickly, you do not stay wet for long. You should also use a light weight and then a thicker and heavier base coat.
  • The jacket below (middle layer) serves as an insulating layer to retain body temperature, and for camping in the snow, think of pants, shirts and microfiber jackets, one of the essential elements tips for camping in winter remember.
  • The outer layer / outer shell (commonly breathable and waterproof) works to protect against adverse weather elements, including snow and wind. You can consider cheaper laminates or alternatives, including fabrics coated with polyurethane (also waterproof but not as breathable as laminates). When shopping, consider people with ventilation of the armpit and the core to expel excess moisture and heat.

While you may be able to cope with your old hiking boots, you should remember that hiking in the snow requires waterproofing and insulation, so you should wear the appropriate winter boots for that purpose. But, of course, you may also need snowboard and / or ski cabins, as each of these activities requires boots compatible with the ties.

Consider essential winter accessories.

After the basic clothes and the tips of the boots, let’s go to the essential winter accessories.

  • Put on a hat because it not only isolates and protects your head from the cold, but also your body.
  • Mittens and gloves should never be forgotten, as well as bring some extras for replacements when a pair gets wet.
  • Glasses or glasses can protect your eyes, not only from the wind, but also from the sun. You can choose something suitable for specific weather conditions.
  • Thin and tight socks are indispensable for the first layer before placing another pair on it, but make sure both are made of synthetic fiber or merino wool. Consider adjusting the boots when you select the second layer of socks because it would be too tight if you used a very thick pair for the second layer. Again, bring some extras for easy replacements. And if they get wet, place them near your sleeping bag to dry overnight.
  • Leggings are necessary to keep snow and water out of your boots and add additional heat. Make sure to use only the breathable and waterproof designed for winter.

Choose the right backpack

While you are getting excited about this extreme weather camping soon, you should know that winter camp requires additional equipment. And having said that, consider taking a large volume package, although you have to pack as light as possible.

Cold Weather Camping Tips: The Complete Guide for The Winter Camper

What you need to do here is make sure you are prepared for any winter conditions. Consider this guide for a two to four day camp.

  • At least 65 packages (light weight)
  • Package of at least 80 liters (Deluxe)

* Remember to get a backpack with mooring points, if you are planning to bring snowshoes or skis.

Pulling a sled

Part of this check list To camp in winter is to pull a sled if you are making longer trips because you can reduce the weight that your back has to carry, allowing you to carry more equipment.

Cold Weather Camping Tips: The Complete Guide for The Winter Camper

But keep in mind that it may not be practical for all types of terrain, so plan and investigate the path / route to decide whether taking one is appropriate or not.

Bringing utensils

Of course, you can not eat without utensils and you only need two items: a plastic spoon and a plastic cup. Did we say plastic? Yes, you do not bring metal utensils to camp in the snow and obviously you know why. And cleaning plastic utensils is a breeze that all you need to do is scrape the rest of each meal with snow.

Planning for adequate food in winter camps.

Heat requirement

To keep your body warm in the winter camp, you need to increase your caloric requirements. Specific variations are applied per person (age, health, body metabolism …), but here is a basic guide.

  • 2,500-3,000 calories for sedentary occupation.
  • 3,500-4,000 calories for three season backpackers
  • At least 4,500 calories for winter backpackers.

Meal regime

Experts suggest avoiding fresh foods, such as vegetables, eggs and fresh fruits because they are laden with water, which means they weigh a lot. But like any rule, an exemption applies! You should bring sources of high-fat foods, such as butter, cheese, and meat, as well as dry foods, such as rice, cereals, oats, and wheat.

Cold Weather Camping Tips: The Complete Guide for The Winter Camper

You can also consider bringing in something extra, including freeze-dried foods, which are easily cooked, saving fuel and baked goods, including cookies, which increase energy almost instantaneously.

First is breakfast, which should not be complicated but simple, as it starts your day and sets it in motion and working as soon as possible. Remember, staying on the sidelines and setting aside your tent for a long time can only cool your body and feet, so think of a good simple breakfast.

A tip: consider the food to be cooked in water, in each person’s cup (for example, oatmeal, granola, hot chocolate …). And for an additional boost, add a little margarine and milk. Easy, but complete with a combination of sugars, fats and proteins, these breakfast foods can help you move forward very quickly!

For lunch, we will have another simple approach to cold camping. You can turn off the stove and cook if you wish; otherwise, you can take a personal lunch to eat throughout the day, when you are in water stops, scenic areas and clothing breaks. Obviously, the second approach is better than the first because it reduces the time to stop and pass an important stop. But anyway, consider the three main food groups (fats, proteins, sugars) that we talked about earlier.

And for the last meal of the day, dinner, here is also a simple approach. Start with a hot drink or instant soup (once again, each can be made in individual cups). Drinking some hot soup provides some heat while the main dish, which may be a bit of stew, is cooking. A stew or glop can save both fuel and time. For example, a glop starts with a sauce base and has noodles / rice, some frozen vegetables and proteins (cheese, lunch meat, tuna …).

You can also prepare meals with lyophilized foods, which can be added to boiling water, which requires less fuel. Different suppliers offer this type of food, although they cost more than traditional noodles and rice. Consider hot drinks, which include hot chocolates, spike or tea and then dessert. Before going to bed, you must have hot water in personal bottles.

Choose a winter camp shelter – tent

But before you can have a tent, you must choose one based on several characteristics. To withstand both snow and wind, find a strong tent for 4 seasons, which usually has stronger poles to hold a lot of snow. After that, analyze your ability to shed snow, so you must have a roof line to let the snow fall. For a winter trip, you need a lot of internal space due to all the gears you are taking and because you need to stay inside the tent for a longer period of time.

Cold Weather Camping Tips: The Complete Guide for The Winter Camper

Apart from these factors that should be taken into account when finding a winter tent, consider one with a drizzle to reduce condensation while providing better insulation (inside, the temperature is at least 10 degrees warmer than abroad).

You can opt for independent tents, which are designed and made for winter use, but avoid three-season dome tents, which do not have strong seams or poles to hold snow. When you have finished looking for a suitable winter tent, consider adding floors with a blanket and covering the edges to seal it well.

Additional checklist for winter tent

  • Additional poles and splints.
  • Stakes (to stake out your tent on the ground when going to windy areas)
  • Earth sheet (canvas or space blanket)
  • Wisk broom (to clean the snow of your boots and clothes before entering the store)

Choosing a camping

  • Read and understand the rules and regulations of the campsite.
  • Do not select a low area that accumulates the coldest air.
  • Avoid open areas and edges, where the winds could be strong and strong to bring down your shelter.
  • Avoid areas prone to avalanche.
  • Beware of the dead branches that hang from the trees.
  • Check the availability of water in lakes and streams.

Building and setting up camp

  • Trap the areas, where to build your kitchen and tent.
  • When installing the tent, make sure the door is 90 degrees to the prevailing winds.
  • Stake your tent.
  • Build snow walls on the windward side of the tent by piling up its sides with snow. Make sure you do it with someone to push the store while you make snow walls to prevent the store from collapsing.
  • Start digging a porch in front of your tent so you can remove your boots more easily and then make a kitchen pit, which should be a minimum of six feet in diameter, enough for four to six people. Be sure to mark this circle with a rope. And then start digging at least two feet down and stack the snow around the perimeter of the well. Then, pack the snow in the perimeter of the hole, which gives you at least four feet of depth of protection against the wind.

Other general ideas of survival to camp in winter.

  • Take food to sleep and thaw fresh items, including meat, for lunch the next day. And if you wake up cold in the middle of the night, some proteins (for example, cheese) could help you. [Protein is digested slowly while you sleep, so it can provide enough body heat for a longer period of time, something that you do not get from sugar that gives you high rapid body heat, but also causes rapid temperature drops.]
  • Minimize the trash to take with you by repackaging the food in bags or separate bags (dessert, dinner, lunch …). And for your convenience, label each bag or code it by color.
  • Dig a hole in streams or frozen lakes as a source of water, but be careful not to fall. You can also melt the snow to make water by heating it and adding snow, so that it becomes water, something more efficient than throwing straight snow in which you can burn the bottom of your container (* Approximately 10 quarts of snow per quarter of Water).

Sleeping tips

  • Get warm before getting into your sleeping bag doing some jumps to increase the heat.
  • Before going to sleep, take out all the gears, the water bottle and the morning lunch with your backpack.
  • Do not forget to take the snow off your boots and clothes before entering the store with the Wisk broom.
  • Remove the layers of clothing and just keep enough to fit in your sleeping bag. [Too much clothing can compress the dead air space in the bag].
  • Remove the wet clothing layers and put on the dry ones, especially the socks.
  • Dry the wet items by placing them in the sleeping bag with you.
  • Place the food and the water bottle in the sleeping bag, t00.
  • In addition, you can keep warm with a hat and polar guard booties.
  • Sleep with your face out of the bag to reduce the accumulation of moisture inside.
  • Changing your sleeping position can help if you wake up several times in the middle of the night but it may be insufficient for some people. Turn off your oven by eating some protein when you wake up feeling cold at night (something normal in cold weather).
  • If you need to urinate, go ahead! Otherwise, you will lose energy because your body has to keep all the extra fluid throughout the night.
  • Do not forget to bring a thermos with hot water inside your store.

General checklist for camping in winter.

The following is optimized for winter travel in mountainous areas, where the temperature ranges between 20 and 30 degrees Fahrenheit. Make adjustments based on specific conditions.

Outer layer Base layer accessories Footwear
Breathable jacket / waterproof Tapas and long funds John of expedition weight. Wool / wool hat Camp boots
Breathable / waterproof pants Medium weight long john tops and funds Ski mask Waterproof snowshoes
Soft shell hiking pants Long sleeve shirts Synthetic lining gloves. Synthetic or wool socks.
Down jacket insulation Synthetic bras Isolated medium weight ski gloves. An extra pair of socks to sleep on.
Waterproof leggings Synthetic briefs / panties Down mittens
Insulation pants Handkerchief
Hat or visor
Waterproof mittens

Gear list:

  • Backpack with internal / external frame
  • Four season camping tent.
  • Sleeping bag
  • Inflatable mattress
  • Foldable snow shovel
  • Foam sleeping pad
  • Trekking sticks
  • Fuel bottles
  • White gas stove
  • Matches and waterproof lighters
  • Kitchen set
  • Spoon and plastic cup
  • Lighthouse with extra bulb and batteries.
  • Parkas
  • Water bottles
  • Compass / GPS
  • Vacuum bottle for hot drinks.
  • Multi-tool, Swiss army knife or pocket knife.
  • Sunglasses, sunglasses.
  • Chemical heat packages
  • Assorted bags with zipper
  • SPF + 45 sunscreen
  • Backpacks
  • Lipstick
  • Toilet paper
  • First aid kit with personal medicines.

Other gears:

  • Slide
  • Personal location beacon
  • Pee bottle
  • Trailer sled
  • Metal tray
  • Crampons
  • Avalanche and beacon probe
  • ice axe

* The winter camp checklist is not exhaustive, but it is only a general description of what to bring, which may vary from one situation to another.

Cold Weather Camping Tips: The Complete Guide for The Winter Camper

However, a little planning before camping in the cold can keep you safe and prevent you from encountering any setbacks along the way (or being less prepared for what you may find).

If possible, give him at least one month to prepare for the winter camp, so that he can equip himself with the right clothes, accessories and tools for his comfort and safety, not only for you but also for his colleagues. camp. Finally, feel free to review this guide or share the tips with your nearby circles who are also planning for a winter camp.


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