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January 15, 2009

Important Cold Weather Camping Tips

Filed under: Camping — admin @ 10:09 am

Many people assume that when warm weather ends, so does the opportunity to spend time outdoors. This is a common misconception. As long as you think ahead and prepare well, you can camp and enjoy the great outdoors year-round. Camping in the cold and snow does require a bit more preparation, but it can be just as enjoyable as sleeping out in July.

Photo by angela7dreams on Flickr

Photo by angela7dreams (Flickr)

The most important consideration when camping in the winter is staying warm overnight. While temperatures in can be in the 40s and 50s during a nice winter day, nights can dip well below freezing. A well-insulated sleeping bag and thermal undergarments can help ward off the chill, as can a draft-free tent. Some people prefer to camp with a small generator to power a heater in the winter. If you go this route, make sure you place your heater a safe distance from any flammable materials.

Deciding what to eat during a cold camp trip can pose a bit of a quandary for the novice camper. Warm, filling meals are vital to maintaining energy levels, so the basic sandwich may not be adequate. Soups and stews make the best choices, as do chili. A pound of ground beef, a can of your favorite beans, some canned tomatoes and a few spices make a hearty meal in minutes. Just make sure you keep fresh fruits and veggies in an insulated cooler to prevent freezing.

Check local regulations carefully before doing any out of season camping. Certain states prohibit camping during the winter due to storm and avalanche dangers, so it’s vital that you know you can be safe before heading out. Make sure you stick only to approved trails and paths to reduce your chances of becoming stranded during a storm, and keep flares on you in case you do get lost in a squall.

Photo by Steve Jurvetson (Flickr)

Photo by Steve Jurvetson (Flickr)

Camping in cold weather offers an entirely new experience, even for the most seasoned camper. The beauty of the wilderness is winter can be fascinating, and enjoying it can be simple and very pleasurable with just a few simple precautions.

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