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64

When talking about fresh, dry clothes then it's not true. More layers definitely equals warmer! As pointed out in the comments if you really go to extremes then more layers doesn't necessarily equal warmer, but to get to that point you have to really cram yourself in the bag so there's no insulating air between the layers. You could also make yourself so ...


25

Yes, it is definitely doable. -20°C is only -4°F. The real question is whether it is doable by you at the level of discomfort and hassle you are willing to put up with. Only you can answer that. At best we can point out what the hassles and discomforts will be. First, your fear of dying of cold in your sleep is silly. You'd have to do something ...


24

Another option is to keep your water bottle inside your jacket and use your body heat to prevent the water from freezing. Many mountaineering jackets have internal elasticated mesh pockets for this purpose. Alternatively, I find I can just put the water bottle inside my jacket and use the waist belt of my rucksack to prevent the bottle from falling down ...


23

Possibly. the reason this is a consideration is best way to stay warm is with loose layers (multiple depending on the temp) that trap air pockets close to the body that are heated BY the body. if you are in your birthday suit you will trap a decent larger pocket of air around you. BUT a single sleeping bag will NOT keep you warm this way. if you go this ...


22

I'm answering my own question to share some knowledge. First, cold toes/fingers is serious. You start feeling discomfort, then a little pain, then you stop feeling them and forget about them, then you get them amputated. So you should constantly check if you can still feel toes and fingers, and if not, start to warm them up. Second, I find most effective ...


20

This was tested and “busted” on MythBusters: Turns out, just one alcoholic drink could make you feel warmer, but it actually lowers your core body temperature. How does alcohol employ this rule of opposites? Alcohol may make your skin feel warm, but this apparent heat wave is deceptive. A nip or two actually causes your blood vessels to ...


17

First off, weigh up whether it's worth crossing said river. I know this question is about if you "have" to cross it, but bear in mind that falling in is a real danger and if you do, hypothermia can onset very quickly and be deadly. It depends on the situation - if we're talking about a shallow, wade-able body of water that's not much more than a stream I'd ...


17

I hadn't seen any of these but a quick Google does indeed seem to bring up a few! From a quick glance around, though this isn't an authoritative answer, it seems that 5 season tents are specifically designed for the harshness of Arctic-like climates, rather than a 4 season tent being designed more for your average winter in non-arctic conditions. I guess in ...


16

Two considerations: Layers should be loose and non-constricting so as to allow good circulation. Too many layers can get tight. Also, day clothes will be damp, even if you think they aren't. Air them before bringing them into your bag if it is cold.


16

It is much better to avoid frostbite than to treat it. You can easily lose fingers and toes to frostbite. When you are camping in the winter, you cannot go into the lodge and warm up like you do snow skiing. You should really pay attention to frostbite. If it is much below freezing and you have numb fingers or toes, you should take some kind of action. If ...


16

So if you're completely out of your expected element, have no emergency blanket or shelter, then there are a few options to provide some additional protection from the cold. Get out of the wind. The wind makes things that much more miserable. If you can, get into an area protected from the wind. Find some insulation. Stuff leaves loosely between clothing ...


16

Keep active. Bring a good hat. While your body can reduce blood flow to fingers and toes to prevent the core from getting cold, for obvious reasons it doesn't want to reduce blood flow to your head. Thus, it's important to keep your head warm. Eat sufficiently. Your body needs a lot of energy to stay warm. Don't deny it that energy. Mix food with readily ...


16

I cannot answer directly if you are risking your life or not, however, it is quite possible to tent in -20C weather, given appropriate preparations and gear. Condensation, possible wind and snow-load are a few of the environmental factors to consider in your preparations and gear selection. The condensation one is critical, as damp gear (in general) loses ...


15

There are two important keys to keeping warm in sub-zero temperatures, keeping dry and dressing in layers. Getting wet by any means, including sweat will make you miserably uncomfortable. It is also obviously a lot harder to get dry once you are wet in a cold environment. As most people are aware the extremities are the hardest parts of the body to keep ...


15

I think capacitive gloves are your best bet. Basically, they are gloves with something that allows the screen to close a circuit with your body (your hands) and that makes the screen work. I've provided some links to reviews, but the bottom line is this: at the temperature you're describing (around 0 degrees Celsius) they will probably do the job reasonably ...


14

I am not a doctor, so I can only repeat what I think I understood from lectures by those that do have medical training. I'm pretty sure I remember Dr Murray Hamlett (I highly recommend attending one of his lectures, if he's still doing them. He is not only a leader and pioneer in cold weather medicine, but also a very good and engaging speaker.) saying to ...


13

Please don't drink alcohol to stay warm. It may make you feel slightly warmer temporarily, but it isn't actually helping you. According to my favourite volume on Wilderness Medicine (page 156), a small nip won't hurt you if you already have a cold-induced injury. However, it is strongly correlated with cold-induced injury, due to the cognitive impairment ...


13

Adding to Steeds self-answer. Other ways to warm up fingers and toes: Wiggle your fingers and toes vigorously (while walking, while sitting) - circulation is aided by muscle movement. Sprint (if you have the extra energy) When not using them, ball your hands up inside your gloves (remove your fingers from the glove fingers and make a fist inside the ...


12

Only in contrived or extreme examples does wearing less clothing about your body in fact make you warmer when camping. The areas where I might consider it warmer to not wear clothing inside a sleeping bag are: Insufficient ground insulation when sleeping on solid ice or where you have no other viable insulation. In this case, it might make more sense to ...


11

I’m not sure where this came from, but I can assure you that on some nights people are glad to put on whatever extra layer of clothes they find in the backpack! In other words, according to my experience there is no paradox and more clothes equals warm night.


11

I generally sleep naked in my sleeping bag. Ive slept nights where I went to sleep in my clothes, and then woke up because my feet were freezing in the middle of the night, so I took off my clothes and when back to bed, and then woke up at dawn toasty warm. And nights where I didn't do that in the same exact conditions, and suffered the night. And these are ...


11

My experience tell me this: sleep naked always if there's no sign of a possible avalanche. I've been in many high altitude expeditions in three Continents and have explored many vertical and horizontal caves and underground systems. Sleeping bags are best when they're good. Don't try to get a cheap offer and trade it for your safety or comfort. In ...


11

500 ml and 20 oz water bottles from a convenience store will freeze without breaking. You can carry them inside your clothes, in your pack next to your body, and keep them inside your sleeping bag to help keep them from freezing.


11

I have used both the Pro version of YakTrax as well as the normal version that lacks the velcro strap across the forefoot. They are amazingly well engineered, durable and perform as advertised. On ice, hard snow and frozen trails, they provide excellent footing. Of course - if you are walking on a dry smooth surface like marble or stone, the grip isn't as ...


11

Overshoes When the boots' warmth is not enough, you can use overshoes. Basically, it's nothing more than a sack made of cloth , which you put over your boot and fasten somehow: This helps you in two ways: It creates an air pocket around your boot, reducing heat loss. The snow now melts not on your boot, but on the overshoe, drastically increasing the ...


11

Cold fingers - put them around your neck. The neck exhibits excellent blood flow and thus, heating power The neck is easily accessible area of the body, unlike armpits, thighs, stomach (with all the layers of clothing) At least for me, it is not very stressful to press very cold fingers against the neck, compared to against e.g. stomach. As for cold ...


10

Assuming you're talking about a situation where you're out in the elements (It's the great outdoors after all!), the best method would be to simply store those items close to your body. A pocket inside of your outerwear close to your skin would be best.


10

There is more than one reason, which makes you feel warmer sleeping with less clothes (even if it's perfectly dry): It's the same deal as with mittens, which are warmer than gloves. When you wear a lot of clothes, there is additional separation between the parts of your body and more exposed surface. More surface means more heat transfer from the body to ...


10

There is one more important technique you can use that I was taught in New Zealand, where you have to cross rivers all the time. If you have a group of people (at least 3), you can greatly enhance safety by forming a chain in the following way: Position the strongest person upstream, the second-strongest person downstream and the weakest person in the ...


10

Here's my attempt to make a truly thorough answer to the question of cold-weather clothing. Honestly many chapters of books have been written about this subject, so it is hard to give a specific answer for a specific case. First - Generally agreed upon principles: There are three things that impact hypothermia - wind, wet, and cold. Given the right ...



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