If like myself, you’re a huge lover of camping, then you’ve probably dabbled in winter camping. There is no denying that sleeping outside in the summer is definitely a more enjoyable experience to battling the elements in the winter months. However, there is a certain satisfaction and snugly feeling you do get with winter camping, I think it’s the many layers and feeling of almost hibernation you get when settling down to sleep. As well as the huge contrast you can have between the harsh outside weather and your tent’s weatherproof haven.
There is no need to be cold however as you can dramatically improve your comfort during this sort of trip with the right gear. Here is a little run down of some kit I recommend you use to keep yourself warm and cosy!
Sleeping Bag Liner
They make sleeping bags in different seasons for different temperatures, but the problem with this is that you end up with lots of bulky sleeping bags which can be a pain to store and aren’t cheap. The great thing about sleeping bag liners, like the Sea to Summit Thermolite Reactor Extreme, are that they allow you to transform your existing sleeping bags into warmer ones that will cope with harsher conditions.
They also have the added advantage of being much smaller than a whole new sleeping bag (about the size of a large mug) and can be taken out and used with all your sleeping bags so that you can have all temperatures accommodated for without owning a whole range of bags.
I don’t know about you but the two places on my body that really feel the cold are my hands and feet. So for me thick, warm socks like heat holders are essential. These thick socks, with brushed cotton lining really do trap the warm air against the skin and work wonders!
If you’re camping in the winter months then you’re going to be spending a lot more time in the dark than you would in the summer months. Remember it can be dark by 5pm in the thick of winter! That’s why a super powerful lantern like the Coleman Powerhouse Lantern is what you need. You’ll be able to illuminate the entire camp with one of these and tripping over guy lines will be a thing of the past. As well as a camping light I would recommend a tactical flashlight, if you go for a walkabout at night the flashlight will be your new best friend so make sure you check some tactical flashlight reviews before you buy! I’d suggest reading some tactical flashlight reviews before you purchase.
They say that 75% of your body heat escapes from your head. So why not try and keep some of that lovely warmth in and look uber cool at the same time. My recently reviewed, Big Balls Beanie has been serving me well so far this winter. You also can use one to great affect when suffering from the dreaded camping-bed-head that comes from the infrequent showers and a lack of hair dryers and mirrors!
I only actually discovered thermals last year and I absolutely love them. I’ve got a set of micro fleece thermals from Trespass and despite them being a very reasonable price, they do the job fantastically. What I love about them is that you can wear your regular clothes and just pop these on underneath and boom instant warmth and style.
As I mentioned earlier, apart from my feet, my hands are the part of my body which feel the cold the most. One of these Zippo hand warmers, that run for up to 12 hours at a time, has been saving my hands from frostbite and numb fingers for the last couple months. It is just simply brilliant, pop it in your pocket and it keeps your fingers nice and toasty all day long!