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I am doing a silly adventure : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e6LRvj6-7OQ

I'll be riding a russian made sidecar on the frozen surface of the baikal lake.

Departure from Irkursk and circle on and around the lake.

I am just starting the whole prep. thing. - What is the smallest yet most efficient piece of clothing to keep me warm?

As mentioned, I'll be travelling in a small sidecar so need to make simple and easy to carry.

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  • This is from the Adventurists, no? (can't click link at present). Looks awesome! Irkutsk is a brilliant city, and the lake was amazing, but I was backpacking there in the summer, it'll be a whole different ball game then! :) – Mark Mayo Aug 7 '15 at 5:37
  • One tip - find the Canadian travel show 'Departures' (Season 3, first two episodes). They go there in winter, and ride on the ice on the lake as well, so at least it'll give you a visual indicator of what it's going to be like. There'll be some tips in there too. – Mark Mayo Aug 7 '15 at 5:39
  • Also you probably want to separate these into separate questions - asking multiple questions in one post is generally frowned upon here (see help center) and may result in your question being put on hold. – Mark Mayo Aug 7 '15 at 5:43
  • @MarkMayo yes it is with the Adventurists. Thanks for the tip re. question. Will update – InMktgWeTrust Aug 7 '15 at 7:42
  • staying warm, and associated equipement, depends a lot of the kind of physical actiivty that you will engage. I have no idea what kind of effort is required to travel in a sidecar. – njzk2 Aug 10 '15 at 2:28
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Layers of fleece plus a very wind resistant outer shell. Anything else (Carhartt type clothes, leather, Mongolian reindeer skins...) will be heavy as heck. Full face coverage would be smart, but it looks like you'll have a windshield at least.

Since you'll spend time riding in the cold wind, the conditions will be similar to snowmobiling. Try snowmobiling in eastern Canada or the Dakotas in winter, that should be a good approximation of the conditions. And snowmobile clothes should be the right stuff, heavier than most ski wear - skiers move a little and rarely go more than a mile without stopping.

Don't go light on boots and gloves. Those parts cool off fast. Also keep in mind that modern snowmobiles have heated hands grips. Will you?

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  • Thanks for the tip. No heated hand grips. Biggest issue is boots and gloves might need to have layers themselves as they will end up frozen as well. Fun time ahead !!! – InMktgWeTrust Aug 11 '15 at 6:22
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Merino wool (e.g. IceBreaker shirts & long underpants) is very warm compared to its pack size and weight. It combines well with most other outdoor clothing like fleece - and you'll be wearing lots of it.

Just to put it into perspective:
In winter Irkutsk has an average temperature of around -20°C/0°F. Average. Meaning you need to be prepared for temps as low as -30°C to -40°C. Adding to that the wind chill effect from driving around in a side car, you'll be needing some serious low-temperature equipment.

I'd hit up your local outdoor supplier and have a good talk with them about this subject. Snowmobiling equipment and expedition clothes will likely be needed.

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  • I am based in sydney where the coldest temperature gear involves hug boots and hoodie jumper and an extra large skim latte... Might need to drop by canada or Northern US states to get my gear – InMktgWeTrust Aug 11 '15 at 6:28
  • Maybe a trip to Patagonia or somewhere north of there would be helpful? But I don't know how much altitude would be needed to recreate the continental climate you're going to visit. – Pepi Aug 12 '15 at 10:00

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