Cold weather is defined as temperatures that are mainly between the freezing point of water and where someone sitting around needs at least three thin layers to be comfortable in the absence of aerobic activity.

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11answers
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Is it warmer to sleep naked in a sleeping bag?

When camping in cold weather, some people say it is actually warmer to sleep naked than to sleep with clothes on. Is that true, or is it better to leave warm clothes on while in the bag?
36
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11answers
8k views

How to carry water in freezing temperatures?

When backpacking in freezing weather, water in a canteen often turns to ice. I am looking for a canteen that Will not burst when the volume of water increases due to freezing Will make it possible, ...
29
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4answers
2k views

If I have to cross an icy, flowing river, what are some ways I can cross safely?

If I'm alone in a survival situation and I have to cross a very cold river that's still flowing, how should I accomplish this safely?
27
votes
9answers
6k views

Is it dangerous to sleep in a tent alone in a forest in -20?

Can I spend the night alone in a tent in a forest outside Stockholm in -20 degrees Celsius without risking my life? The backstory From the end of January, I'm starting my studies in a suburb of ...
25
votes
9answers
80k views

How to warm up your cold toes and fingers?

In winter your hand and feet (especially toes and fingers) may get painfully cold or you may even stop feeling them. How can you warm them up? This usually happens, when it's below 0°С or when it's ...
24
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2answers
23k views

What's the difference between a 2, 3, 4, and 5 season tent?

I'm looking to buy a new trekking tent, a good quality one, e.g. Hilleberg, Fjällräven, Vaude, etc. At Vaude they categorise tents in 2, 3, 4, or 5-season. What's the difference between a 4- and a 5-...
23
votes
13answers
10k views

How can I stay warm in subzero weather?

I'm going on a campout this weekend and the temperature isn't supposed to rise above 0° Fahrenheit the entire time. I've been in subzero weather before and I didn't last long, even with plenty of ...
22
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7answers
1k views

What clothing would be appropriate for hiking in -18°C with up to 30 km/hr wind?

I recently moved to Germany and am planning to do a hike in the Harz mountains. The weather is expected to be around -18°C. Most of the trail will be sheltered by forest, but the mountaintop is ...
21
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4answers
9k views

Are mittens warmer than gloves?

Given a mitten and a glove made of the same materials, thickness, etc, is the mitten warmer than the glove? It seems to me that having all four fingers in one area (vs separate fingers for gloves) ...
20
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5answers
1k views

Keeping warm in an emergency

When roaming the outdoors, it might happen that one finds oneself in a situation that is much, much colder than one planned for. What can one do in such an emergency, especially when it's so cold ...
18
votes
9answers
689 views

What can I do to keep my hands warm while using touchscreens in the winter?

Now that it is starting to get cold it is more difficult to use touchscreens while outdoors. I use both an iPhone and a Garmin GPS to geocache and both have touchscreens that require me to take my ...
18
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7answers
2k views

Are Ice grips worth buying

The cold weather has finally hit the UK and once again I am tempted to buy something like https://www.yaktrax.co.uk/shop/yaktrax-pro. For those of you not in the UK we get some snow each year (enough ...
17
votes
4answers
3k views

Is it ever safe to let a hypothermic person sleep?

My understanding is that with severely hypothermic patients you want to keep them awake if possible. I'd heard moving a hypothermic patient is risky as you dont want to jostle them, some wilderness ...
15
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5answers
3k views

What do I do to prevent and treat frostbite?

I'm going to be winter camping, and I'm concerned about getting frostbite. What can I do to protect myself?
15
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4answers
813 views

Falling into an ice cold body of water

I've never been hiking in such extreme situations, but if in the situation in the question, i.e. you're hiking in very cold weather and someone falls in (let's say so pretty much their whole body is ...
15
votes
2answers
744 views

Dealing with very cold climate (clothing)

In the near future I will have to prepare myself for a Siberia expedition. During the winter, average temperatures in Siberia range from -10°F (-23°C) to below -50°C (-45°F).1 What should I ...
14
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2answers
1k views

What temperature to prepare for on Everest base camp trek?

I'm doing the popular tourist trek from Lukla to Everest base camp in late April / early May. I know the minimum temperature is on average -1 Celsius (30.2 Fahrenheit) in the Khumbu region at this ...
14
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6answers
2k views

What shoes keep me warm in the cold?

One of the biggest problems I have keeping warm in the cold are my shoes. When I'm out cycling in temperatures below -20°C, ordinary sport-shoes or hiking boots fail to keep me warm Cycling to work ...
14
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1answer
293 views

How do I recognize if someone is suffering from hypothermia?

How can I recognize symptoms of hypothermia on myself and other people I camp with?
13
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4answers
223 views

How do I get my fingers and toes warm before rock climbing at cold temperatures?

I've had now a couple of days when going rock climbing while the temperatures are below the general comfort zone (meaning below 6 °C/ 43 °F). When starting to climb, my fingers got cold rather fast ...
13
votes
3answers
1k views

How to set up a tent in deep snow

How should I set up a two-layer dome tent for 2/4 people in deep snow (waist height)? Do I need some additional equipment (snow shovel)? Insulation under the floor (further than the sleeping pads)? ...
13
votes
2answers
379 views

What should I look for if I want to buy a winter-proofed tent?

I really like to go snowshoeing during the winter. I'm going up to 3500 meters and when I'm doing long tours I would really enjoy to try out winter camping in very remote areas. Is it a good idea to ...
12
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4answers
10k views

How can I prevent batteries from losing charge in cold weather?

Since batteries (for cameras, cell phones, etc) will lose charge in cold weather, what can I do to prevent loss of charge, or at least extend the battery life as long as possible?
12
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3answers
9k views

Does whiskey help keep you warm in winter?

It is a rare day that I head out into the winter wilds without a flask of sumpt'n-sumpt'n in my pocket. A nip helps one to relax, can mildly embolden timid skiers in my group, and gives one that fiery ...
12
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4answers
2k views

Winter Camping: How to warm up your boots in the morning?

Is there a good technique to warm up your boots in the morning? Should you just put them on and warm them up with your feet or is there a better alternative?
12
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2answers
2k views

How should I treat hypothermia?

When I recognize the symptoms of hypothermia, how should I treat it? And what are the dangers if the symptoms are ignored?
11
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2answers
850 views

Preferred way to wrap someone with Hypothermia?

So I know How to treat hypothermia. That question and answer, however, do not address the old recommendation I have heard a 100 times of strip them down and get in a sleeping bag with them. Is that ...
11
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2answers
220 views

Using a “tarp” over the entrance of a snow cave

Is it true that a tarp shouldn't be covering the entrance of a snow-cave while sleeping in one? What's the reasoning to that? Is using a sleeping bag in them just fine?
11
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2answers
371 views

Are there any exceptions to the layer principle?

This question asks why we don't apply the layer principle on trousers. Personally, I disagree with the pretext of the question: I certainly do apply the layer principle on trousers when cycling in ...
10
votes
4answers
506 views

Stove/fuel setup for harsh conditions

We already have topics on fuels here and here which give quite an overview. Also REI gives some info how to choose your stove and fuel properly. Still I would like to know what are the best options ...
10
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4answers
728 views

How to stay hydrated with minimum water usage

A friend of mine asked a experienced long distance hiker, how to drink during such a hike. The answer was, drink 0.1l water per hour and then you are fine. Is this correct and can anyone add some ...
9
votes
3answers
289 views

Can cold weather be sufficient to act as a refrigerator?

Might be a silly question, but if the place I want to travel to has 35 degree F highs and 27 degree F lows, and the ideal temperature for a refrigerator is 35 degrees F ... can't I just loosely pack ...
9
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3answers
2k views

Sweating in sleeping bag

I sweat a great deal when I sleep. When it's really warm outside at night I just keep my bag unzipped and there's no problem. However, when it starts to get cold and I have to zip my bag up, I soon ...
9
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3answers
948 views

How much warmth dead leaves add if placed under your tent/pad?

During the fall season, fallen leaves from deciduous trees such as maple, oak, etc. can be found in abundance. Dead leaves can be gathered and placed under your sleeping system in order to sleep more ...
9
votes
1answer
772 views

Sizing up high altitude boots

I currently use La Sportiva WildCat Trail Running Shoes size 43 for trail running/light hiking and Nepal EVO's size 44 for Ice Climbing and Alpine adventures. The Nepal EVO's fit me perfectly with a ...
8
votes
3answers
562 views

What's the maximum temperature difference wind-chill can account for?

If I understand wind-chill (which I probably don't), the air feels colder because your body doesn't have as much time to heat the air as it passes by. But in that case it seems like there should be a ...
8
votes
2answers
120 views

Does sleeping with liner shoes make you feel colder?

While reading this article about mountaineering boots I found following quote by Ian Nicholson quite interesting: "When climbing in a double boot, bring the liner in your sleeping bag at night to ...
8
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2answers
851 views

using anti-perspirant in extreme cold climate

Could the use of anti-perspirant give benefit in extreme cold climate where sweating can be a significant problem. I've read many articles regarding keeping warm when alpine climbing in the extreme ...
8
votes
1answer
198 views

How much does body fat actually insulate you against the cold?

I'm not a big guy, but I can sit in a cold pool of still water for a long time if I stay still and control my breathing, my skin gets cold, but after you get past the cold shock I can sit there rather ...
7
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4answers
262 views

Blizzard Chaser: What to take on a 5-hour Blizzard Hike?

Thank you for taking the time to read through this ! I just noticed there is a chance of Blizzard (Winter Storm Jonas) in our region (NY/NJ) and I would like to take this unique opportunity and go ...
7
votes
3answers
910 views

How do I light a spirit (ethanol) stove when it's cold?

I am very happy with my storm-proof spirit stove. When others are struggling to find a place outside the wind, I can cook wherever I like — provided I can lighten my ethanol fuel. Trangia stove in ...
7
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4answers
1k views

What clothing would be suitable for hiking and camping in 0°C?

I intend to hike and camp where the forecast temperature is around freezing. It can get windy in exposed areas, but I would be starting low and camping amongst the snow gums. During the day air ...
7
votes
4answers
3k views

Do reusable “hand coolers” exist?

I often carry around a couple of reusable hand warmers when hiking or just around the outdoors when it's cold. They don't take up much space, they're easy to reuse (just boil) and they provide a fair ...
7
votes
2answers
172 views

What’s special about a winter gas mixture? Why does it work better?

There’s a special “winter” gas mix available for gas stoves. How is it different from the usual propane/butane mix and why does it work better in low temperatures? (Does it work better in lower ...
7
votes
1answer
134 views

Yosemite in late March a good idea?

My wife and I have never been to Yosemite. We will have some time off in a couple of weeks (end of March) and we're considering planning a trip to Yosemite. The amount of rain and snow in recent ...
7
votes
2answers
878 views

Sleeping bag too hot

How can I regulate my temperature in a -15°C down sleeping bag when it is cold but not quite -15°C? I have a down sleeping bag rated at -15°C. Used it at a previous hike where the temperature went ...
7
votes
1answer
377 views

Why do we need to pee more than usual out in cold weather?

I noticed I have to pee more than usual out in cold weather. Does anyone have a scientific explanation for that?
7
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5answers
1k views

How to prevent skin cracks?

So every winter working in the dry cold, my skin, on my hands and feet, cracks. Particularly between my fingers and toes. What can I do to prevent this?
7
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1answer
147 views

Dozens of dead little spiders in the snow

The winter suddenly set in here and it was pretty warm before. We walked through the snow in a central European forest and I realized a lot of "black dots" (dozens of them) as a contrast to the white. ...
7
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1answer
880 views

Is it true that, in cold conditions, you will freeze faster wearing wet clothes than not wearing any?

I have heard this being said before, but I cannot find any proof that this is true. Is it?