Winter Camping Tips
If you choose to head off on a camping trip during winter months, you need to ensure that you are prepared for harsh weather conditions that you may not have experienced before. No matter where you are in the world, temperatures significantly drop as darkness falls, and if you’re not fully equipped with the right camping gear, you’ll be paying the price. Struggling to keep yourself warm during cold winter nights can result in problems such as hypothermia and frostbite – but this shouldn’t stop you from heading off on the adventure of a lifetime.
The Size Of The Tent Matters
The size of your tent plays a huge role in the warmth you’ll experience while camping. If you are camping alone or with a small number of people, you’re going to want to camp in a small camping tent. If your tent has lots of empty space, the heat will escape and you’ll be in for a very cold night. Body heat is key when camping in the winter; the closer you are to each other, the better. If you decide that a large camping tent will be better for your experience, you’ll need to ensure that you have plenty of other procedures in place to keep the heat in. Follow the next steps closely.
Insulated Sleeping Bag
You might get away with a thin sleeping bag when camping in the summer, but you’re going to need something far more durable when camping in the winter. Your sleeping bag is going to be one of the most important things you take with you on your camping trip, so invest in a thick sleeping bag which will keep you snug and warm. It’s recommended to use a ‘mummy’ shaped sleeping bag while camping in the winter, as this design fits closely to your body and won’t let any heat escape.
Layers Of Clothing
It’s unlikely you’ll walk down the street in just a t-shirt during the winter months, so why is it any different with camping? As you will be staying still for long periods of time while camping, the more layers you wear, the better. Of course, you don’t want to end up restricting your movement thanks to wearing 20 jumpers, but finding thick clothing that you can layer up is essential. Starting with a thermal vest and adding layers of warmth from there will be sure to keep you nice and toasty. The great thing about wearing layers is that you can remove them if necessary, so you’ll always be in control of your temperature. Scrap ‘less is more’ when it comes to camping in the winter, the more layers you bring, the happier you’ll be!
Having extra layers of clothing is all well and good, but they won’t keep your hands, feet, and head away from the cold! It’s simple to solve this problem; remember to pack plenty of pairs of thick thermal socks to save the feet. Keep them on while you sleep otherwise you’ll risk losing a toe or two (in a worst-case scenario). With regards to your hands, invest in a pair of winter gloves so you have the reassurance that your fingers will be warm at all times. It’s worth having a waterproof pair of winter gloves while outdoors, and a slightly thinner, more comfortable, pair while sleeping. Lastly, don’t forget to pack your winter hat; we lose heat from our heads quickly, so you’ll want to keep this nice and trapped in.
Unlike staying at home, we can’t simply switch on the heating when things get a bit chilly camping. This is one of the harsh realities when camping in the winter, however, there are some simple alternatives. If the weather is forecasted to plummet, bring a portable heater with you. These can be used for short periods of times to bring some warmth back. Be careful with portable heaters though, they put your tent at risk of catching alight if not kept controlled.
Cheaper, and safer, alternatives include bringing hot water bottles and heat pads with you. These should provide the coldest parts of your body with extra heat for up to an hour.
Stay Hydrated and Well Fed
Your stamina is going to be put to the test when you camp in the winter. The chilly conditions will impact your energy levels, and you may find yourself feeling weak and, as a result, colder than before! Your body uses liquids to maintain body temperature, so stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water and warm beverages when possible. As well as this, keep your energy levels up with foods high in calories and protein. The last thing you want is to be starving and cold.
In Case Of Emergency
If you stick to all of the above points, you’ll be sure to have an enjoyable camping trip without any frostbite-related injuries. However, in a worst-case scenario, ensure that you are prepared by having the following:
- Keep a phone and portable charger on you at all times in case of emergency
- Have an up-to-date first-aid kit
- Bring multiple pairs of each item of clothing when possible
- Camp near easy-to-access exit points
It’s looking like you’re now fully prepared to embark on your best camping trip yet. By having all the correct clothing and equipment, the cold won’t dampen your spirits whatsoever! Don’t forget to keep yourself and your surroundings dry to prevent a damp experience – this will only make things colder. Keep yourself sheltered at all times in the event of rain and know when to pack up your things and head home if the weather gets too torrential.
With all of these necessities packed up and ready to go, you will soon start to wonder why you ever turned your nose up at camping in the winter. The memories made will last you a lifetime and the skills you learn can be passed down to generation after generation. Enjoy your warm, snug, camping trip!
- Camping – The Secret To Happy Camping: How To Stay Warm In Your Tent, Campig With Style
- How To Keep Warm When Camping, Campsites
- 19 Tips to Staying Warm While Sleeping in Cold Weather, Just Roughin’ It