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Tips for Winter Hiking and Camping (1/04)

From Dot Myer

  • Don’t use your stove in your tent unless you have very good ventilation. It’s hard to sleep when everything is damp.
  • An old wool sock or other insulation around your thermos keeps your soup hot and keeps your fingers from freezing when you pick it up. Also, using a sock or insulation around your water bottle might keep the water from freezing.
  • Allow more time for almost every activity than you think you will need.

From Laura Philipps

  • If you have to leave your boots out overnight, open the laces and tongue. That way, if your boots freeze, you can still get your feet into them in the morning.
  • If you have enough fuel and water, boil water and put it in your water bottle. Put the hot water bottle in your sleeping bag to keep you warm. Just make sure the lid is screwed on tight!
  • Put anything you don’t want to freeze in your sleeping bag with you for the night, including toothpaste, sunscreen, and your journaling pen.

From Mary Lou Recor

  • Always wear red so the helicopter pilot can spot you from the air.

From Frank Gibney

  • To limit cold feet use AridXXX dry stick deodorant on the feet for three days prior to the hike. Change socks at the first hint of cold.
  • To keep warm in your sleeping bag for a multi-day overnight trip in the winter, make sure you turn the bag inside out as soon as you get up in the morning. That will help get rid of moisture. Then, beat the bag up for at least a minute prior to getting into it at night. This will make a world of difference in keeping you warm.
  • The cold fools your body into not drinking. Many problems with dehydration happen in the winter. Hydrate often.
  • Days are short and lights are notoriously unreliable. Carry two.
  • A hand full of gorp at 2 AM is like stoking the fire and putting on an extra blanket.