Survivalist Forum banner

1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
I've got a bad feeling...
Joined
·
48 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
One of my greatest concerns regarding survival, or just living off the land, has been with my ability to deal with cold weather... I'm kind of a wuss, like my heat :D:

Anyway... planning on camping tonight just to test the waters. It's supposed to get down in the 20's tonight. Think I'm going to go up to one of the state wildlife areas & camp out tonight. They allow primitive camping in a few areas, really don't expect anyone else to be around (except for maybe some deer hunters).

Going to have my tent & my mummy bag (rated down to 0 degrees)...

Any suggestions or words or advice / encouragement appreciated...

I'm not really going to test my survival skills (will have means to start a fire, etc)... although I will use the opportunity to test my skills... mainly just going to see if I can deal with the cold!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Take a dog with you..lol.

Wear a stocking cap, maybe the chemical hand warmers?? You could also heat rocks in your fire and keep them near-by in the tent to keep it warm. Don't want to be TOO warm, sweat is NOT your friend in this instance. I also love silk long-johns, etc. Minimal sweatage, it breathes and is REALLY light, and warm.

Have a great time!
 

·
Happiness is 2 at low 8
Joined
·
1,403 Posts
...Any suggestions or words or advice / encouragement appreciated...

I'm not really going to test my survival skills (will have means to start a fire, etc)... although I will use the opportunity to test my skills... mainly just going to see if I can deal with the cold!
Been a long time since I went cold weather camping but the single big thing I learned was that no matter how cold it is and how toasty warm you are, if you wake up have have to go to the bathroom, get up and go. Do not lay there in the toasty warm bag hoping you'll get back to sleep. You'll warm up again quickly after you've relieved your discomfort.

The other thing is do NOT go to bed wearing anything constricting your blood flow; tight socks, elastic bands, belts etc. For me I like being aux-naturale and find myself warmer that way than wearing PJ's. The theory is that your bag is warmed by your body heat. By wearing PJ's, jeans, T-shirt or whatever you're preventing your body heat from warming the bag. Therefore your feet are cold, your hands are cold and you're miserable all night long.

You might toss a couple chemical handwarmers just in case things get too bad for you... You can get them in the hunting dept of Wally-World or any gun shop.

Good luck and enjoy... report back how it went.

Allan
 

·
Mountain Critter
Joined
·
914 Posts
Keeping warm while camping...

Good for you! Glad to see you getting out and testing your gear. I do a lot of winter camping, and have come to really enjoy it (most of the time.)

Consider the ways your body loses heat, and work to control them…

Radiation: You lose a lot of heat through your head, neck and kidney areas (small of the back) so make sure these areas remain covered. The idea here is to trap the escaping heat and keep it close to your body. But as a previous poster mentionsed you don’t want to trap too much heat, because it’s better in the long run to be a little cool than it is to sweat.

Conduction: Heat loss into a cold surface that you are in direct contact with…so separate yourself from the ground. This can be anything from an air mattress to a foam sleeping pad to a pile of evergreen boughs, dry pine needles or forest debris like leaves. You want to use “dead air” in your insulation material to trap the heat and prevent it from leaching into the ground.

Convection/wind: shield yourself from the wind. If you’ve got a tent, this is taken care of. If not, use a tarp, poncho or piece of plastic. Build a windbreak from fallen logs or rocks. Take advantage of natural features to protect you from the wind--a boulder, little ridge, dense vegetation or other things that will serve to block the wind.

Evaporation/Respiration: When you breathe warm air out, and cold air in, this results in a heat loss. You can reduce this somewhat by partially covering your nose and mouth while you sleep, so that you are breathing in partially warmed air. Don’t smother yourself though, and be aware that it may get a little damp in your sleeping bag if you are breathing into it all night.

Don’t wear cotton, because if you get damp either from your environment or from sweat, it will evaporate and cool you quickly. Wear layers of wool (base layer of silk not a bad idea) or synthetic fleece. Obviously if your clothing is damp from the hike into your sleeping location, it is going to help you stay warm that night if you change into something dry before settling in for the night. Including your socks.

Something I always do when sleeping out in the winter is to take my boot liners (this will really only work if you have winter boots with removable liners) into the sleeping bag with me, so they’re not so cold when I go to put them on in the morning. And if nighttime temps will be below freezing, make sure to take a canteen/water bottle into the bag also, so you have something to drink in the morning without getting a fire going to melt the ice!

You're going to stay warmer overnight if you're able to have a good meal before settling in. Eat something with some fat and carbs if it is available so your body has something to work on overnight.

Enjoy! Winter camping (and it’s not really even winter yet, right now) can be a lot of fun if you go into it prepared and with a good attitude.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
20 Posts
GREAT thread! I can't wait to see what you learn.

My best advice is that what's under you is as important as what's on top of you. We used to pin our tent to the ground, then STUFF leaves under. It looked rather fluffy and mattressy, but made a huge difference. I also use at least as many blankets/pads under me as over me.

Stick with wool. Billions of sheep can't be wrong! :D

SOCKS! HATS! We wear thick socks and winter hats. Both can be removed during the night if necessary.

And, G-d help you, please remember to pee before you go to bed. Cold weather makes the frequency worse, and there's nothing worse than having to go do THAT in the middle of the cold cold night!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
79 Posts
start your adventure in the warm part of the day let's your body to adjust as temp
falls a good camping pad is always nice.age has alot to do with it also and if you work outside or in a office when i was early 20's i worked outside i could throw my army bag on the snow by the fire no tent and be just fine.now i'm 35 been working in kitchens
for yrs the cold gets to me more the body can get acustom to many things just takes
conditioning this will be a learning experince for you. but can also be fun no bugs
no crowds just you your fire and nature and if you get to cold to sleep take a night hike
to get that blood pumping works wonders
 

·
I've got a bad feeling...
Joined
·
48 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks folks for all the helpful info! I'm excited & looking forward to seeing how it goes.

Ran home earlier & packed up my stuff... I'm taking:

Tent
Mummy bag
Foam pad
Wool army blanket
Wood & stuff to make fire
Plenty of warm head gear & extra warm clothes in case I need them
Water

Thanks for the heads up on wool & avoiding cotton... I stopped a wally-world & got a new pair of long-johns which are 55%poly / 45% cotton... so hopefully those will be better than what I had... also got some of the hand warmers.

Don't know about sleeping in the nude though!!! :D:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
262 Posts
Here's my advice for the sleeping part. I wear a knit cap over my face with the mummy bag sinched up to a small hole. My hat covered face is sealing the sinched hole. Make sure you have a sleeping pad of some sort.

Something extra I do for comfort is run my stove briefly to warm up the tent when getting dressed. Watch out for carbon monoxide poisoning. Don't run it long, and make sure the tent has ventilation. I'm not an expert here, so read up on it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
262 Posts
Here's my advice for the sleeping part. I wear a knit cap over my face with the mummy bag synched up to a small hole. My hat covered face is sealing the synched hole. Make sure you have a sleeping pad of some sort.

Something extra I do for comfort is run my stove briefly to warm up the tent when getting dressed. Watch out for carbon monoxide poisoning. Don't run it long, and make sure the tent has ventilation. I'm not an expert here, so read up on it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18,814 Posts
Good luck! This sounds like a lot of fun.

Ex b/f and I used to LOVE cold weather camping. Always gave us a good excuse to keep each other warm :D:
 

·
Here's Johnny!
Joined
·
306 Posts
... Anyway... planning on camping tonight just to test the waters.
I like doing the same thing in the fall/winter months! Last time was last year when I spent three days in Arkansas where the night temps were in the mid teens!

+1 Chemical handwarmers! Wrapped a couple of those in my cap as I slept. Threw a couple at the bottom of my bag too. Slept toasty every night.

When I lived in Colorado we used the hot rock trick. Had a fire all night. When going to bed, wrapped a fire ring rock in a shirt or towel and put that in the bottom of the sleeping bag! :sleep:

Stay safe! Looking forward to hearing how it goes!
 

·
CHEERS :p
Joined
·
1,946 Posts
I read somewhere to camp in the winter time it is a good idea bring hotwater bottles and pee in them......this offers you the ability to not have to leave the sleeping area and the urine will inturn keep you warm..

I read it somewheres, not sure how many folks would try it tho....but it does make sense
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,090 Posts
A closed cell foam pad is a must.I like ensolite.
I used to sleep in the winter inside a concrete tube at a friend's property.As long as I was insulated from the cement,I stayed comfy. My bag was a down M-1949 mountain bag.Sill have it.
 

·
Earthwalker.
Joined
·
10,288 Posts
Take a metal water bottle and if it gets to cold heat some water up and put it in the bottle and use as a hotwater bottle.:thumb:
 

·
Freedom Is Not Free
Joined
·
662 Posts
This year I'll be trying the adhesive heat pads for back pain while on deer stand. They might be a big help over your kidneys while sleeping.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
12,204 Posts
Have to add my suggestion to the others that recommend a good sleep pad. From your list it looks like you have one. I don't think I'd close up the mummy bag to the point of breathing into it. Too much moisture. Leave your nose outside the bag.
 

·
TrailBlazer
Joined
·
734 Posts
Dont forget your Generator for electric blanket, Tv, dvdplayer, and microwave for some popcorn!:D::D::D:
 

·
Watchin tha world go by
Joined
·
8,151 Posts
insulate yourself from tah ground. if you dont have a pad leaves work very well.

built a log or rock reflector both behind your fire and yourself, using a rock face or down tree works well. make your fire as long as you are, place a line of rocks next to it - no river rocks tho as the moisture in em can make em explode --- hell of an alarm clock.

if your sleeping bag is not up to the cold --- you can build a small shelter , pack it with leaves above and below sleeping bag, poncho on inside on top of leaves-- and crawl in.

enjoy and post pics
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
41 Posts
When I was in scouts, tenting in the winter in NY it was pretty cold. Some things I remember, cahnge into new clothes before bed, all of them. If you have sweat at all before that, you can get very cold with possible hypothermia. Stay dry at all costs. Foam pad, also we used newspapers as the first layer to the tent to absorb any moisture. Pack snow around the tent if there is any to help with wind and insulation. Use many layers of clothing as opposed to a few thick ones. Take layers off or on to avoid sweating. Wake up and walk around to get your toes back.
 
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top