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Hot Tent Survival Camping: How to “Stay Warm In the Harshest Winter Climate”

Mac Slavo
December 22nd, 2016
SHTFplan.com
Comments (56)
Read by 15,323 people
screen-shot-2016-12-22-at-4-00-27-pm

Video still: Wilderness Rocks, YouTube

How can you stay warm even in the coldest of climates if you are compelled to trek through the great wilderness around us?

There’s no way to know the exact conditions you may have to endure, or the situation that will lead way to the SHTF we have all been anticipating.

But you can be ready, and practice to hone your skills until that day comes.

Whether camping or bugging out, there are some good tips and skills for adapting for harsh winters, and these may come in handy, particularly if you live in the northern parts of the country.

On top of the appropriate warm gear, it would be wise to be able to control heat while backpacking or on the run. While it isn’t easy to do in every situation, it is possible even in a temporary structure.

One of the best strategies to use a portable, wood-burning stove designed to safely set up inside tents, with the stove exhaust exiting through a sectioned-pipe (also portable) that is designed to vent through hole in the roof of the tent or shelter.

Best of all, these stoves are relatively affordable (or you could make your own).

Check out this video via Wilderness Rocks:

Hot Tent Wood Stove Bushcraft Overnight winter survival Backpacking.

Here are some other videos on how to best handle the harsh climate of winter survival camping.

As usual, there isn’t just one right way to do it, but putting these strategies into practice will give you the opportunity to work out which methods work best for your needs.

The last thing anyone wants to do is discover they are inadequately prepared to deal with the cold once there is no turning back.

Solo Bushcraft Camp. 2 Nights in Snow – Natural Shelter, Minimal Gear.

Warmest Winter Survival Shelter – Deep In Bear Country

Bush Camp Long Term Winter Survival Shelter Construction

Whatever you do, make sure you stay out of the cold long enough to avoid getting hypothermia, or succumbing to the elements.

Surviving in this climate can be one of the most deadly settings you’ll ever encounter.

Read more:

Extreme Winter Survival Vehicle Preps: “Stay Warm and You Will Be Found”

Prepper’s Blueprint: Seriously. Prepare. For. Whatever. Is. Coming.

Surviving Extreme Winter and Blizzards: “Avoid Panic and Discomfort of Being Unprepared”

The Six Laws of Survival: Strategies For Beating the Worst Case Scenario

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Author: Mac Slavo
Views: Read by 15,323 people
Date: December 22nd, 2016
Website: www.SHTFplan.com

Copyright Information: Copyright SHTFplan and Mac Slavo. This content may be freely reproduced in full or in part in digital form with full attribution to the author and a link to www.shtfplan.com. Please contact us for permission to reproduce this content in other media formats.

56 Comments...

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  1. Lone wolverine says:

    I worked 5 winters in north North Dakota as a carpenter outside all day. I think the single most important thing is to wear 3 layers of sweat pants under whatever pants. Non waterproof gloves so you can dry them. And the strap on non slip metal things on your boots so you don’t slip and break your arm.

  2. Hubby and I live at our country bug out. The grand children have built many forts over the years in the 19+ wooded acres that we own.

    I am glad that they did. There is a tree house that I make sure that they maintain. It is up high and soundly built.

    Now I need to get a wood burning mii stove to put in there and give it a try this winter.

    Thank you for this wonderful report.

  3. Zeus says:

    Putting a stove like that in the photo in a closed tent is a death wish, as it fills the tent up with smoke and carbon monoxide. Always have good ventilation.

    For keeping warm try a negative 10 degree sleeping bag with a wool blanket inside of the bag. Wear a good wool hat to keep your head warm. Also wear a Neck gator, You can loose a lot of body heat from areas of exposure. Neck gators are great. And you can cover your neck over your ears if you want. Get several. Of course having a Hot babe in your tent can heat things up too. ha.

    • Zeus says:

      Also drink plenty of water, it’s easier to keep a full body warm. So have ways to procure water, like melting snow. Dress in layers, and peal off the clothes and let your sweat evaporate like steam so you get dry. And reverse pull the arms out of your jacket to let the steam out. If you allow yourself to get wet, then sit idle, you are damp and will get cold pretty fast. This is where good gear comes into play, like moisture wicking materials and where there are zippers on the jacket arms and sides, and on the sides of ski pant legs, that will open up to let the steam escape and vent. Watch out for extreme cold where you can get frost bite like on your ears. I have experienced Minus -80 Degs below zero wind chill temps by the great lakes. I got frost bite on my ear once when it was that cold. That hurts for a while. Pack an extra set of clothes, and change into dryer clothes. Get out of the wind, as it creates a colder wind chill. Want to keep your feet warm? Wear a hat.

    • Mountain Trekker says:

      What are you talking about? Every wall tent in the Rocky Mountains have a wood stove in them. Trekker Out.

  4. Genius says:

    Mac, that is sooo true. I LOVE the little woodstove Tess linked in her article! But you don’t always have fuel to burn. I carry an alcohol stove, it burns super clean, no smell, no visible flame, very warm. Just be careful not to tip it over lol. Candles are good too for a small tent. Heat packs can last a long time (12 or more hours). ALWAYS have a tarp! Roll up like a burrito if you have too. 🙂

    • Alcohol stoves will give you a little heat but that is all. The reason being is that alcohol when burned absorbs a huge amount of heat and requires a huge amount of air to burn compared to something like fuel oil or even propane. Alcohol puts out only 10% of the heat of propane pound for pound and less than that of fuel oil. It works really well in things like dragsters because of the huge amount of heat it absorbs allows for really high compression ratios, In Brazil, the Alcohol burning VW beetles had a 4″ cooling fan compared to the 11″ one in the gasoline versions and many people just removed them completely and did without. Its a great refrigerant. But then again a gelled compound like sterno does come in handy.

      • Genius says:

        Hmmmm, ok ed, yer the expert.How do you rate your alco sove? please only give real life experiences ok…

        • Mountain Trekker says:

          The only experience I’ve had with an alcohol stove is with one I made out of two coke cans and it seems very inefficient for the amount of alcohol it burned. I really couldn’t imagine trying to use one for heat, and if so how much alcohol would you have to carry. Trekker Out.

        • I was a chemical engineer for Sterno Group. Formulated many of the products they have today. I know all about alcohol and how it burns. Sterno used to be denatured with gasoline and or other hot burning chemicals which is what gave it its heat. But since it was mandated to remove these chemicals (EPA), Sterno lost its heat. It still works but the alcohol alone does not make most people who were used to its higher heat happy.

          • BigB says:

            You are so right Ed. Sterno is no longer the solution. I cant get the new Sterno to heat up my coffee pot to a boil. I just use it now as a warmer for food.

            What I do use and use a lot is my propane heater. Always carry a 5 gallon tank wherever I go.

            BigB

      • durangokidd says:

        I keep warm in the boonies with an ARE camper shell and a 12 inch compressed foam mattress in my pickup bed, with two sleeping bags: a mummy bag rated to -20, inside another bag rated to -40.

        Body heat keeps me warm as toast. 🙂

        • Zeus says:

          Keep in mind, your fart sack needs to be made of a breathable material including your outer bivy. Your body gives off moisture, and your sleeping bag can become damp. I made the mistake once to put a heavy duty trash bag on the bottom half of my sleeping bag, and thought it would help hold in the heat. I found out the trash bag trapped the body moisture as well and the bag was pretty damp on the lower half.

          I did not discover the sleeping bag was that damp until the next night, when I went to get in it and took the trash bag off. I was not a happy camper.

          A few other Camping Tips from hands on:

          – In the morning, shake your sleeping back outside to get any critters in there, out like Wood Ticks. Maybe do it again before night time, and air your sleeping bag inside out in the daytime sun. The sun will help sterilize the material and dry the bag.

          -And of course check your body for ticks. An small mirror can help you see hidden spots. Carry a magnifier glass also, to get a close up view of a suspect tick embedded. Some skin moles can look like Tics. You don’t need to be digging your skin moles out.

          – Also always get your sleeping quarters set up before it gets dark. Trying to get ready to sleep in the dark sucks.

    • durangokidd says:

      When burning candles for heat, place on top of a pottery plate and cover with the pottery pot. Use spacers to lift the pot up a bit so air will be sucked in under the bottom to keep the candle burning (or drill holes). The heat will exit the top.

      The pottery itself, since it is earth, will retain heat too radiating enough to warm 100 square feet. Well, maybe not warm, but it will take the chill out of the air in that space. 🙂

  5. Warchild Dammit! says:

    Alcohol stove?Hey,you can burn the homemade rot gut in it,awesome!

    The stoves cool for a semi-permanent shelter but carrying a bigger one for tent camping not seeing due to weight and all.

    Tis all right,am sure Genius has one in his tool shed I can use times get tough!

    • Genius says:

      Rotgut? HA! You evidently have never had good homemade whiskey. Beats the tar out of yer store bought stuff! One more insult like that and I will ban you from my shed with the woodstove! Bring your wool jammies 🙂

      • Genius says:

        Saint Warchild, it can get kinda cold in a tarp tent lol.

        • Warchild Dammit1warchild69@hotmail.com says:

          Genius,your threat would carry a bit more weight if I actually thought I would come to Canada!

        • Genius says:

          On a funnier note: Our youngest child ( 6 mo. old male cat) loves to drink beer with his dad. He also like to steal sips from his mothers drinks. A chip off the ol block as they say lol. Tall and lanky and claws from hell, he will rule over all rodents! Killed his first mouse at 2 months old! “Rocky” will be a great cat and he wuv’s us 🙂 I can’t wait till he’s old enough to go to the bar lol 😛

          • Genius says:

            He is also extremely rare. A male calico cat (1 in 3000) calicos are male. What a great lil buddy 🙂

            • anon says:

              Genius

              A Cat that drinks beer? Now that’s a cat. What brand does he prefer.

              Never seen a cat do that. What is the safe consumption limit by chance.

              • Genius says:

                We have 3.2 beer here (bottled water) but we do get some Sam Adams from another state. I can drink an 18 pack of state approved shit and BARELY GET A BUZZ! Fookin Mormons are behind this shit and they need to step out! Oh ya asshole Mormons lol, there is a NEW site that is ratting you out! Muthu fukaaas eat this! www. Mormon WikiLeaks . com. Ha ha ha ,eat that you fooking cult bastards! Mormons are the nicest people on earth but they are also the stupidest people on earth!

                • So you sound really drunk when you wrote this inappropriate comment about people of the LDS Jesus loving faith so we can forgive you.

                • FYI Genius You don’t have to drive to another state to get “regular” “Sam Adams 4.75% by volume” (was my fav by the way) beer just go down to the local liquor store and get some of the good stuff. Save yourself some time and money. Maybe pick up your favorite liquor while you are there.

      • PO'd Patriot says:

        LOL Genius, I got a little offended but then WCD never has sipped our finest. On the article about the tent wood stove. You have to consider that you are going to be pretty stationary cause of the weight you have would to travel with. I’d venture to say that a pack animal might be necessary. I’d probably be more inclined to use a low temp sleep system (sleeping bag) and boil some water to fill a hot water bottle to place down by my feet.

        • PO'd Patriot says:

          A tent with a woodstove would make for easier living quarters by allowing to cook on its surface. Hopefully not too many people would be roaming around in such lower temps in an EOTW scenario.

          • Zeus says:

            Who would carry a 30 Lb stove in their backpack for a temporary shelter heat? Oh, just whip out the stove from your back pocket eh’ McGiver? And that 5 Lb Iron skillet for the T-Bone steak.. It makes for a nice article photo though. Those stoves may be useful for a more permanent Shelter, or weekend camping and put in your vehicle if you have space, but not practical for some hiking trip miles in. I would rather carry 30 Lbs of Mountain house food or other foods if I had a choice for 30 Lbs of gear with a mini stove.

            Yes I have one of those Mini HQ stoves from SportmansGuide, and know what I am talking about with hands on experience. The vent holes are not big enough on the door, as they would put the fire out. So you need to keep the door cracked or drill more holes in the door to let in enough O2 to keep the fire going. I closed the door with the door vent holes open and the fire went out in my initial test. I like to field test all my gear when I get it to see what works and what does not work and know what the products limitations are.

            Lots of armchair commandos, writing articles based on opinion and not real experience. So go through all your preps and “Flock Your Gear”, lay it out and test each product with hands on. Or would you rather wait until SHTF and try to read the directions in the dark. And many products now are sold with out any instructions and you need to go online and download the Buyers instruction Guide and owners manuals, for the details. If it is a complicated product, then print out all the owners manuals in advance to SHTF and keep it with the product. In SHTF, you may not have power or the internet to do download anyting. I just picked up a Garmin Drive GPS60 for my vehicle, and there was no owners manual in the box, so I downloaded it online. Also in my opinion, it says hook the USB cord up and upload the latest info. I say BS to that too, as it will nail you for that unit and your IP address, and later on, they (big Bro) can track you with your own device. I did NOT connect it to my lap top, and it works just fine. Also NEVER charge your Cell phone with a USB connected to your computer, as it will trigger a massive Sync process sharing info with Google as all your contacts, data and etc will also be transferred in Google’s big data base. Think People don’t be stupid.

            Back to the stove: You could keep one of these mini stoves permanently in a temporary shelter you have hidden some where miles back in the woods, for a back up heat and cooking, but still you need a lot of ventilation, so you are not breathing CO2, which will kill ya. I suggest you make a good exhaust hatch in your shelter for the smoke to escape. If not all your belongings will have a layer of soot on it. Even with the hatch open you can stay warm from the heat conductivity and radiation coming from the stove.

        • Warchild Dammit! says:

          Oh boy,another delusional novice distiller who thinks that aging his rust removing/acid rot gut in a gallon plastic jug makes for a fine drink!

  6. That shelter is practically a cabin.

    I bet the first guy who decided to make a cabin probably got laughed at big time, until everybody realized the effort was worth it. It’s harder to keep a large shelter warm. These look pretty nifty.

    __

    • Genius says:

      BfromCA, Ya those shelters are more for people staying a while. If you live in bear country you need the protection of logs. It is a lot of work to make a shelter like that if yer an old guy like me. Chopping wood with an axe will sweat the alcohol right out of you! Lining your shelter with space blankets will help hold the heat in bigtime too. Those feller’s look like they could use a drinky poo about now lol 😛

      • NorseMan says:

        If you live in bear country and need to camp in winter – you don’t have to worry about bears – the are hibernating in a nice warm den!

        Special vented tents, stove pipe, wood burning stoves, axes and saws to cut that wood – not my idea of portable. And if you are looking at a temporary winter camp – consider portable ice fishing houses and propane heaters pulled in a sled.

        But seriously, you should either have a winter camp (deer camp?) already set up with a lot more than this, or go with a 4 season tent and a very warm sleeping bag. I would not try to build a temporary wood shelter in the winter after dragging 80 pounds of gear! You will sweat and die! You either camp in the winter for fun (and are totally prepared), or you haul your butt as fast as you can to someplace warm.

    • Zeus says:

      Yes you too can make one of those shelters in a weekend. Just convince a dozen of your buddies to hike back in the woods 10 miles to help you build it. lol

      Honestly, I can’t see destroying 200 good saplings in the woods to give you temporary shelter for a few days. And add up the calories you burn to build it. The Indian Dome Sweat lodge seems more practical, with less wood use, and bring your own cover like a breathable tarp as suggested in the photo.

      Go look up the Large Longhouse Construction the Mohawk Indians used to build. It was so big they could house many families in the lodge. Here is a link to that for ideas. http://exhibitions.nysm.nysed.gov/iroquoisvillage/constructionone.html

  7. nuckinfuts says:

    Speaking of cold here’s y’alls weather alert.

    • Genius says:

      Is that your buddy there in the wood chipper?

      • Genius says:

        When I was young 21 or so, I had a Toyota landcruiser (72) FJ45 and I loved 4 wheeling. I worked midnight shift and sometimes went “digging” after work. One time I grabbed a friend (thank god) and we went out to a remote place in the mountains 4 wheeling. It was early morning and we got out in the woods with not much problem. BUT, the problem was the snow was frozen on top and started melting later in the day and we got sunk in it. We were high centered and could not get out. We jacked and stuffed limbs under the tires and I had a winch too but no trees within reach of it. I buried my spare tire and tried winching to that but no luck. We spent all day there trying everything we could think of to get out. I was absolutely exhausted and tired as hell from working all night. We gave it up when the sun was getting low and started hoofing it. It was about 7 miles to the nearest place that was occupied. Trudging through the 3 foot deep snow we made it to the road and started down. After about 2 miles I could hardly stay awake. All I could think of is I need to lay down and sleep (and I mean I needed sleep). I sat down and layed back in the snowbank beside the road. My friend said “we have to keep going, you can’t lay down” I said fuck it send someone back for me. He demanded I keep going and even started yelling at me to get up and GO! It was an argument and he won out and I got up and trudged on. After what seemed like an eternity in the dark assed cold we reached a house and got help.

        The point I am trying to make here is you can be fooked in a hurry and if I was by myself I would have slept and died! My friend saved my life that day and from then on I had some preps in my cruiser! I used to do a lot of crazy shit and I’m lucky to be here but THAT taught me a lesson! Learn from life’s lessons!

        • durangokidd says:

          Central Arizona should break 40 degrees F for an overnight low. Be there to get there. 🙂

        • Zeus says:

          Yep G. Sumthin to remember..Glad you are still alive. I remember one time I took a Girlfriend up to the place in Wisconsin where we deer hunted in Nov. 350 acres of woods, swamp, bogs, creeks, you name it. Well I had only been up there in the winter when there was no foliage. And this time, we were up there in the summer. So I said to my GF, hey want to see where my deer tree stand is, she said sure, so we went walking. Finding the tree stand out there, was no problem. However we walked around a little more, and we got disorientated. Lost basically, So I said, we can walk in this direction and I know that there is a country road that way. Yes so we hiked that way, and eventually hit the road, then took the road and walked back to the camp a few Miles.

          Lesson: What you think you know in one season for what the woods look like with no foliage, is way different looking in the summer season where your distance vision is more limited. Like stumbling around in someone else’s house in the dark.

          Also, this is great advice learned from a well seasoned Old Guy I used to know, and he loved to teach us kids about the woods etc. When ever they would go hunting in some remote area, and you all scattered in different directions. There was a Camp Rule, if you were not back at least a half hour or more before dark, someone at the camp would go out and honk the car horn a few times every few minutes to let anybody still out there or possibly lost, the direction of the horn sound back to the camp. We used that horn signaling several times over the years, and that really works. There was a trout stream that went all over the property and it was a confusing set of woods. Yes, later on I took a compass with me, so I could at least figure out what direction I needed to go, to get back to the camp. Deer hunting up in Wisc was cold, and many overcast days where the sun would not be out to tell what direction was north. Back then, we did not have Google Maps to see what the layout of the land was, so we went off of Memory. Years fast forward, I did go to Google Maps and it was thrilling to see what that 350 acre property looked like from above. Several fields that were all clear now have lots of small oak trees growing on it, so time changes landscape, as well as the time and seasons and foliage cover changes everything too.

          And seasoned boaters know, being out on the water, it is really great to be back to the dock before dark. In FL all the back bays and shallow areas mixed with mangroves, with the daily tide can really throw you off or get stuck in a low tide. Lots of areas are not marked or with buoys. Want to feel really lost, be in a boat when its dark out in a remote area, with no light house or markers. Compasses are a must for any boaters, like when out to sea farther than you can see land.

          Stay safe all.

  8. Comanche says:

    The best post in ages.

  9. Asshat says:

    Got a usgi shelter half tent with no floor. No need to buy any stoves just build a fire throw some big rocks in the fire get them hot go inside the shelter and dig up the ground bring the rocks in put in the hole cover with dirt put some bedding grass or whatever on top for bedding. You will be toasty warm and sleeping on the ground won’t zap the heat out of you cause of the hot rocks. Forget stoking stoves all night keeping a fire going all night worrying about your shelter burning down. You fuck around with gimmicky stoves your just setting yourself up for failure. Heavy canvas tents with no floor for winter lightweight screened tents with floor for summer to keep bugs out. A lot of people are gonna die if they are forced to survive because they put their lives in the hands of well marketed gimmicks. A lot of gear is crap that has no real value in the world of survival. Simple no bullshit techniques work. Just a few hot rocks will get your shelter hot no need to buy anything.

  10. Ahh more storys so they can post links to amazon products.

  11. Archivist says:

    The guy in the first video spent an awful lot of time sawing on small branches. If he had brought along a lopper, he would have been done much quicker.

    • Zeus says:

      Archivist, You are exactly right, I have a set of small landscaping hand clippers in my BOB, where I can process a lot of small branches for a fire at any length, Way better than trying to cut small branches with a saw. I also have a folding saw, and also a 16″-18″ band saw blade I taped in a cardboard shield and taped the shield to by BOB external cross frame. I can take the blade out and make my own handle bow from a small green branch, to attach the blade at each end of the bowed branch, to make a more efficient cross cutting saw.

  12. Tucker says:

    I have a very hard time understanding the mindset of people who create youtube videos that advertise a topic of interest – and then ruin and make the video totally unwatchable by adding in an unbelievably obnoxious and irritating soundtrack.

    I was able to watch less than 3 minutes of this 49 minute video before the music soundtrack drove me away.

  13. PeterFrancisco says:

    Always carry two space blankets with grommets in the corners, two plastic drop cloths, and paracord in my backpack. Less than $40 in materials, no weight, sets up in 5 to 10 minutes. I build my gear with the intent of having a shelter, fire with a pile of firewood, and processed drinking water all in two to no more than three hours.

  14. AnonLegion says:

    Prefer wood over liquid fuel. Do not need to carry wood into the field. If you do not have wood for your fire… get out of the cave. No need for tent stoves as I build wikiups every time I go out. Not that hard to be honest and only a couple hours to put up a strong semi permanent one. Use a Dakota Firehole inside the wikiup. Have done this for over 30 years now. From Alaska near Ruby Village ( now ruby township ) to small islands off the coast of Long Island, and now in the UP of Michigan. Longest stint on Indian Island was 2 years. Longest trip to Alaska 5 months. The more you need, the more weight you have to carry.

  15. EVER SEEING EYE says:

    To all you ipod yuppies if you have no skills by now you never will you will be the first to go.

    I can see you all crying, and screaming now.

  16. anon says:

    Taking an overall look at the State of the Nation, both physically and mentally, one has to wonder when we say Merry Christmas to greet each other, do we mean it.
    Would it be mentioned at all if we each knew who voted for who.
    This Christmas Season I didn’t spend much. Can’t tell you what the Shopping Malls look like with the decorations or what is on sale. Neither do I care.
    As for the New Year? How much positive stuff is there to look forward too. No Harmony in the Congress or the Nation. You know damn well something is wrong in the financial markets. Might as well have a war next year.
    My expectations are very low as you see. Yet more real than the Fake Christmas.

    Peace on Earth and Good Will towards Men.

    Yeah, right.

  17. Nomadic says:

    ht tps://m.youtube.com/watch?v=2_TqB1uzRdM

  18. Sgt. Dale says:

    Ok Now Santa.
    The Old Sgt. would like another one of these newer wood burning stoves for Christmas. Or maybe you can tell my Wife for my birthday in January.

    Yes Santa I know I have one large one but this is for when TSHTF, and if I have to bug out. I know you understand because you have brought me SHTF stuff before.

    Thanks Sgt.

    P.S. Merry Christmas.

  19. Brian says:

    Escape to the woods doesn’t mean escaping from desperate people who will do anything to survive. It is especially hard if you are by yourself. A tent wouldn’t be safe or tolerable for long. The more lasting shelters require handtools and some practical experience at building them. Foldable shovel, pocket saw, cordage ttake up space in your bug-out bag. I have them as well as books on how to build shelters(no practical experience). If I did manage to build a shelter, I could easily be fighting with people intent on taking it. In all, heading for the woods to spend a few weeks, would be my last deperate option.

  20. Sean says:

    You know what would really help the prepper movement, a lot? Keep making the how-to videos, they are really helpful. Just stop making them with all the asshole music that accompanies almost all of them!Not only is it annoying and stupid, but there is no fucking soundtrack in life, now is there, motherfuckers? And guess what else? Play music out loud, and you’ll give your position away to the bad guys. Use the headphones, and you won’t notice or hear them, and maybe not see them, coming. I know this because I saw troopers in VN who were supposed to be on guard duty in the jungle, get killed listening to AFN instead of paying attention to the automatic ambush they were supposed to be watching! The bullets started flying, we chased the bad guys off, and found the “sentry”, one of our darker brethren, shot in the chest twice, wearing headphones, with the music still on. Skip the entertainment, and get to, and stick with, the message. No matter what the subject, they start playing asshole music to introduce it, or while it’s going on, I turn it off. Grow the fuck up.

  21. Reader1 says:

    In Alaska, I learned to wear wool, leather, and fur. Goretex and fleece is fine and dandy, but the old standbys blow them away when it gets to 20+ below.

    I used to wear a big old Russian fur-lined wool coat, surplus German army or Filson-type quality hunting wool trousers, a layer of polypro, a wool sweater, gloves and ECWCS over mits, a homemade coyote fur hat, and Siberian Valenki felt boots. That stuff was better than anything else I ever saw and it kept me warm in all conditions.

    I still got it, and more, but that gear is really too warm for the coldest lower48 winter. I could go out in the snow, watch the Northern Lights, and pass out asleep in the snow for an hour or two and wake up just as warm as if I was inside. Nothing modern works like the old stuff.

    Felt boots, for instance, work better than milsurp Mickey Mouse boots, goretex boots, Sorels, and anything else you can think of. I could go out in cotton tubesocks and Valenki and never feel cold at 20+ below. THAT is a warm pair of boots!

    If there’s enough snow, dig a snow cave. As long as temps stay low enough, you can dig in, cover the entry with your pack (leave an air gap), and the interior will stay a pleasant 30*. Army GP tents and Yukon stoves worked fine up there, except the snow inside the tent would thaw, then the mosquitoes would hatch and fly around inside the tent.

  22. Mountain Trekker says:

    To warm for the coldest lower48 winter! You ain’t lived in Wyoming have you. I was in WalMart the other day and a lady was stocking shelves and she had on one of those hats that look like Yogi with ears sticking up, like Sue on Life below Zero wears and I ask her if she watched Life Below Zero and she said no, she lived life below zero. Trekker Out.

  23. Philoveritas says:

    I’m no stranger to cold and maybe because I’m a tenth-generation Canadian I have cold resistance in my DNA or something; but a few tips. Expose yourself to the weather frequently in the fall and early-winter; take walks when it’s chilly and you body will up it’s heat production for later when you really need it(when it’s -40). Also increase your fat intake(unsaturated fats for the sake of your health). Your body stores oils as ‘brown fat’ which it then burns to heat you from the inside, bears and nothern-woodsmen alike need a healthy reserve of this fat that you don’t get from carbs. People survived for millennia without the benefit of indoor heating since the last ice-age. Just don’t be stupid and get caught out in the open on a frigid windy day. Snow isn’t so much the problem, it usually doesn’t snow much at all when it is colder than -10C(sorry I don’t know F).

 

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