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Cool Thoughts
#1
Here in the Northeast, summer is definitely over. We may get another few warm days, but soon the snows will fly! I've been getting my gear ready which got me thinking. This is far from a complete list or how-to but I hope it gets you thinking!



Thoughts for the coming winter season in no particular order:



Stay dry and well ventilated! Make clothing choices based on letting water vapor out and keeping water out. Gore-tex is good for those soupy above freezing days. Soft shells are better for high exertion and low (liquid) precipitation. Fleece is love!



Don’t over dress! You might be toasty at first but you’ll sweat through and then you’ll be wet! ….Then cold! Carry a layer to pull on when you stop moving, I call it a “belay jacket.”



Jamming two pairs of socks into boots you fitted with one pair will make your feet cold. Carry an extra pair of wool socks even on a day trip so you can put on dry socks if you need to. You can dry them against your belly. Insoles like Superfeetâ„¢ will help prevent conduction heat loss and keep your feet warmer.



Gaiters help keep your lower leg warm by adding another air pocket layer and they keep snow out of your socks.



Your winter pack should be larger volume for more volume NOT more weight!!!!



Liquid fuel stoves like the MSR Whisperlite Intl. Are more efficient than any other stove type, over a broader range of conditions. If you can use wood too, take advantage of it! A piece of 1/4” ply (12” square or so) makes a great stove board. If you are doing real cooking, it is nice to have a larger one and maybe even tape a piece of ensolite to the underside. Consider a large aluminum snow melting pot with a lid if you are going to melt for water.



Carry a piece of foam pad to sit on, even if you use a Therma-rest™ type pad. You don’t want to sit on cold ground or in snow. You can also use it to put between you and the tent wall if needed.



As a matter of fact, treat snow like dog poop; you don’t want it on you. Carry a cut-off car brush or baker’s brush to keep snow free in camp.



Mittens keep your hands warmer than gloves (team work!) Practice skills wit mittens on! Light fleece liner gloves are a good idea.



Think about a pair of “cook gloves” for kitchen work. Cotton work gloves over your synthetic liners will work well. They are to protect your hands from heat from the fire or stove.



Hand injuries can come fast and deep in the cold! Cut cheese, meat, potatoes and anything like that into cubes before you go! This eliminates a major source of injuries and is really convenient. Also, keep first aid stuff with your cook gear.



If the temperature outside is like that of the refrigerator, you can carry food that needs to be refrigerated! …. And if it’s freezer temperature, you can carry frozen foods! Yeah, ICE CREAM!!! Some food, you actually have to keep warmish!



You can bake on a stove, in the winter, IF you have a Frybake or a pan like it.



Your body uses fuel to run and stay warm. You will be burning extra just standing there. 5000 cal. A day is not unusual. If it’s really cold, don’t be afraid to add big blob of butter to your hot cocoa.



Stay hydrated! You use as much water in extreme cold as you do in extreme heat! If your water bottle freezes, you aren’t drinking enough! Ok, it might be 50 below, but you get the point. Watch out for drinking bladder hoses, they do freeze.



Watch wrists, and neck coverage, big arteries run through there and you can loose a whole lot of heat there. Wristovers, shirts with thumb loops, neck tubes and long balaclavas help here. You can also uncover these areas to dump heat to stay comfortable.



You want to be slightly cool and comfortable, not warm! If you feel warm, your body will have to start cooling itself, which leads to sweat. Don’t be afraid to take layers off or open pit zips and vents. Take your hat off to loose a lot of heat fast.



You DO wear a hat don’t you? Keep one on in your sleeping bag too! A silk weight balaclava with a warmer wool or fleece hat over them is a good system. You can even wear a hood too.



It is easier to heat from the inside with good food and hot drink than it is to warm on a fire. Now if you can combine both, you are grinning!



Snow insulates! Get down in it BUT insulate from direct contact! Carry an avalanche shovel or even an aluminum D-handled grain scoop. They are invaluable!



When digging a snow cave or kwinzee, Dig a hasty kitchen off to the side and get the kettle going. Strip down to long johns and soft shell/wind clothes to dig. It’s hard work and you will get wet! It is a thermal balancing act! When you’re done (or your turn is over) jump in to your “puffy suit” and grab a hot drink.



Wind Sucks! (the heat right out of you!) Learn to stay in the “wind shadow” aka the lea of objects and terrain. Wind walls are lifesavers! Blowing snow is just as abrasive as sand.



If it is cold enough, frost in your gear can “sublimate” as in go from solid to vapor and blow away. It’s cool to see! In the morning turn your sleeping bag inside out and throw it on top of your tent or shelter and watch the vapor rise! The length of breakfast will get your bag super cold and dry, which means warm when you need it.



Snow steals things and so does wind. You need to be very disciplined with your gear!



It may be a beautiful day now, but you still should know the bearing you are traveling, even if you can see it. The wind can pick up a whiteout very suddenly.



Under bad weather conditions, a cylume stick hung up in your shelter may be a very big help for various nocturnal activities. I like the red ones. Also know where your headlamp is and have a plan-B just in case it doesn’t work. I sleep with mine in my fleece jacket breast pocket.



If you get up to release “a grogan” get dressed for the weather! Many epics start with just running out to take a dump! Consider using a ratline tied to your tent or cave. Last note, make sure you have ALL of your costume in proper order before you commence your performance. More than one mountaineer as fouled their innermost layer because they didn’t check and get ALL their pants down.



If in a camp for more than a couple of days, it might be worthwhile to lay out a “mine field” for digging catholes. Also designate a “night deposit” area close to the shelter. You can scoop up your frozen sculpture in the morning and plant it in the “Mine field.”



If you are getting water from a hole chopped in a lake or stream, Mark the hole clearly so you don’t find it again by stepping in it while looking for it. Something like a willow branch tripod is ideal. Also you can keep it from re freezing as badly by burying it in snow. An igloo block works well.



Don’t camp on frozen lakes and ponds.



Learn to cross country ski and snowshoe, they are both useful!



There are a ton of other things to think about and the Hoodlums already cover many! Try doing a search.



I hope this gets you started!



Muddyboots
Shared pain is lessened, shared joy is increased!

Thus do we refute entropy. -S. Robinson



Communication is a Survival Skill! So is critical thinking!





When any government, or any church for that matter, undertakes to say to its subjects, "This you may not read, this you must not see, this you are forbidden to know," the end result is tyranny and oppression, no matter how holy the motives. Mighty little force is needed to control a man whose mind has been hoodwinked; contrariwise, no amount of force can control a free man, a man whose mind is free. No, not the rack, not fission bombs, not anything—you can't conquer a free man; the most you can do is kill him.



#2
I just put dogs between me and the tent wall. <img src='http://www.hoodswoods.net/IVB/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt='Big Grin' />
Don't let reality stand in your way.

Some people are alive only because there are laws against killing them.
#3
You mentioned gaitors - great idea. I was thinking about them in a woodland situation to protect the shins and ankles from scrapes and burrs, but wintertime has its purpose, too.



Got any suggestions for material (summer, winter)?
#4
Excellent write-up and information. <img src='http://www.hoodswoods.net/IVB/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/thumbsup.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':thumbsup:' />



I've lived in the snow belt all of my life and know it well, but a refresher like you just wrote is food for thought for even the most experienced.



Thanks you for it.



Sawyer
Liberal: A Conservative that hasn't been mugged.



Oh, may I go a-wandering until the day I die;

Oh, may I always laugh and sing beneath GOD's clear blue sky. Friedrich-Wilhelm Moller



"We face the question whether a still higher standard of living is worth its costs in things natural, wild, and free."

Aldo Leopold



Just Rambling again......... Sawyer
#5
Good stuff. A nice addition to Kodiak's on sleeping warm.



The only thing I would add is a good set of UV sunglassses. On a sunny day, your eyes are dealing with a double dose from the sky and reflections off the snow. I remember a tale from my youth of a guy freezing to death within feet of the cabin after using the outhouse at a commune in Novia Scotia. Hippy-sicle.
I Hear Voices.....And They Don't Like You.



"Further, I propose that this "Moment of Misery" be hence-to-forth be referred to as "Moment of Misery for Misanthropic Yammering", or "MOMMY"!" ~ DDennis2



(what an effing moron. - i feel such pity now for his lovely wife and intelligent children - and maybe even for his food-quality dawg, nick-named "Spicy" sez i.)
#6
[quote name='Muddyboots' post='159668' date='Sep 17 2007, 09:18 PM']You can bake on a stove, in the winter, IF you have a Frybake or a pan like it.



Muddyboots[/quote]



Never heard of a Frybake before...can you elaborate?(EDIT: oops, nevermind. I googled it)



Here's another way to bake on a backpacker stove...simple to make and cheap! Mine works great.



[url="http://www.freezerbagcooking.com/myblog.htm?blogentryid=1529580"%20target="_blank"]Home-Made Bakepacker[/url]





(there's some good camping recipes on this site, too.)
Hoodlum formerly known as "molawns"



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"An investment in knowledge pays the best interest."



"Rebellion against tyrants is obedience to God."



"Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn."



~Benjamin Franklin





"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."



~ Mark Twain





"What lies behind us, and what lies before us are small matters compared to what lies within us."



~Ralph Waldo Emerson
#7
Good addition Bro. Misanthrope! One of the worst sunburns I ever got was on a glacier in sub zero sunny weather! Don't forget sunscreen, sunblock lip balm and dark UV blocking goggles! Even with good lenses, your eyes can get really tired and crispy. A thing that can help is to make a couple of cups of tea and then put the wet tea bags on your eyes and let a little of the tea get into them.



The sun doesn't need to be out to fry you on an ice sheet!!!



Muddyboots
Shared pain is lessened, shared joy is increased!

Thus do we refute entropy. -S. Robinson



Communication is a Survival Skill! So is critical thinking!





When any government, or any church for that matter, undertakes to say to its subjects, "This you may not read, this you must not see, this you are forbidden to know," the end result is tyranny and oppression, no matter how holy the motives. Mighty little force is needed to control a man whose mind has been hoodwinked; contrariwise, no amount of force can control a free man, a man whose mind is free. No, not the rack, not fission bombs, not anything—you can't conquer a free man; the most you can do is kill him.



#8
Excellent thread MB. I haven't done much winter camping, but I live in snow country, so anything's possible.



Thanks! (I'm PDFing this thread!)
Clint H.



The Wandering Ones webcomic

http://wanderingones.com



"Dr. Universe... at least tell me something! You were a respected scientist, your work on the Cherenkov-Kirby reaction was going to benefit all mankind! Why would you turn into a Supervillain? WHY?"



"I read an Ayn Rand novel." - Spinnerette Webcomic
#9
MB,



Cool Thoughts!



Coyote Spirit
I'm confussed...Wait...Maybe I'm not



Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming, "Wow, what a ride!!!"



http://www.bepreparedtosurvive.com/



Author of "Build the Perfect Survival Kit"
#10
Nice job MB,



Good tips to get everyone ready for winter. Winter is the season that gets this viking all kinds of excited!



KS
"Courage is being scared to death and saddling up anyway." John Wayne



"I'd rather have 10 seconds in the saddle than a lifetime of watching from the stands." Chris LeDoux
#11
has anyone here ever tried under armor? the stuff is great, i use to work outside 8 1/2 hours a day through all kinds of seasons, and in winter it was great, it kept the heat very close to my body and it hardly ever made me sweat.
`But I don't want to go among mad people,' Alice remarked.

`Oh, you can't help that,' said the Cat: `we're all mad here. I'm mad. You're mad.'

`How do you know I'm mad?' said Alice.

`You must be,' said the Cat,

`or you wouldn't have come here.'
#12
Just a reminder COTTON KILLS!

Avoid cotton clothing in the winter time. I was recently talking to a search and rescue dude out of Bend, and he was telling me a story of some searches last winter. Two weekends in a row, they got called out on searches for missing snowmobilers. The first ones, they found dead. The second set, they found alive. The conditions were nearly identical, both blizard type weather, equal temperatures etc. The only difference was... The first set ( a father and grown son) were in cotton jeans, cotton socks , jean jackets etc. The second set ( two females) had worn polyester clothing, fleece pants and jackets etc. The second pair were uncomfortable surely, and dehydrated, but did not even suffer from frostbite. Even if you think you are going out for a short time, take the time to dress appropriately, just in case.
Hikermom





" A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to it's old dimensions." Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr.
#13
Thank's good info,I was driving along the misson mountains the other day and there was snow on the high peaks,it's coming.You should have been at rabbit stick last week,sitting in on Mor's talk's about staying warm in the winter,you would have loved it.
#14
I would have loved to hear what Mors had to say!



I want to point out WHY cotton kills: It holds water very well! It takes an incredible amount of calories to walk it dry and you really can't sleep it dry. A lot of us do wear cotton pants but most of us have a plan-B standing by. I have actually been warmer running around in my underwear than wearing damp Levis. Most of you know that but we always have new people joining us.



Now, take a look at the rest of Hikermom's post. The two who lived were dehydrated. You need water even if you are cold!!!!



Muddyboots
Shared pain is lessened, shared joy is increased!

Thus do we refute entropy. -S. Robinson



Communication is a Survival Skill! So is critical thinking!





When any government, or any church for that matter, undertakes to say to its subjects, "This you may not read, this you must not see, this you are forbidden to know," the end result is tyranny and oppression, no matter how holy the motives. Mighty little force is needed to control a man whose mind has been hoodwinked; contrariwise, no amount of force can control a free man, a man whose mind is free. No, not the rack, not fission bombs, not anything—you can't conquer a free man; the most you can do is kill him.



#15
<img src='http://www.hoodswoods.net/IVB/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/thumbsup.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':thumbsup:' />



Griz
Hopefully the S won't HTF and I pray every day that it won't. It would not be fun.



I have a high art..I wound with cruelty, all who wound me...Archillocus; 650 B.C.


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