The sudden and profound cooling of the temperature in the core of body to below 96° F (35.5° C.)
Injury or death may result

In general, Hypothermia results when more heat is lost than the body can generate


· Slowing of pace, drowsiness, fatigue, apathy or lethargy · Uncontrollable shivering · Confusion
· Loss of coordination, Stumbling · Slurred speech · Amnesia · Irrationality, poor judgment
· Hallucinations · Loss of perceptual contact with environment · Pale and cold skin, blueness of
skin · Dilation
(enlargement) of pupils · Decreased heart and respiration rate · Stupor


1.  Plenty of rest and good nutrition (before and during cold-weather camping)
2.  Consume sufficient high energy foods (sugars) and water while camping
3.  Exercise so body continues to generate heat
4.  Carry appropriate clothing, footgear and emergency equipment
5.  Use appropriate winter and water proof clothing
6.  Carry emergency camping and shelter equipment
7.  Make camp early in a storm or if lost, injured or tired
8.  Appoint experienced person to be the group's
"Hypothermia Watcher"
9.  Take immediate corrective action for signs and symptoms of hypothermia

First Aid Care

1.  If the victim is unconscious: Check their airway, breathing and circulation ·
Begin artificial respiration or CPR as needed · Handle the victim gently ·People with
Hypothermia are at risk for cardiac arrest

2.  Reduce Heat Loss: Shelter victim from wind and weather · Insulate victim from the ground ·
Change wet clothing · Put on windproof, waterproof gear · Increase exercise if possible

3.  To Add Heat: Place victim in pre-warmed sleeping bag · Give warm, sweetened fluids, followed
by high-sugar foods · Apply heat to neck, chest wall, and groin
(warm water bottles, warm
stones or warm compresses)
· Huddle for body heat · Place someone in sleeping bag with victim

4.  Stay With The Victim until medical help arrives

5.  Seek professional medical assistance as soon as possible
Archery, Indoor Range
Winter Camping
Bird Identification
Planning Your Winter Trip
Camping Trip Checklist
Your Body and the Cold
Fire Building Checklist
Personal Equipment
Sleeping Systems
Map Symbols
Orienteering Club Links
Orienteering Event
Camp Sanitation
Orienteering Training Outline
Safe Hiking
Tree Identification
Aquehonga Tree Trail
Snow Blindness
Back To Skills and Training Aids
Trench Foot
Please Note:
 All information on is for training and educational purposes only.
For specific medical advice, diagnoses, treatment, and care consult your doctor or a medical professional

Yahoo! Health Encyclopedia, Copyright 2002 A.D.A.M, Inc., Copyright 2002 Yahoo Inc.
Boy Scout Handbook, Copyright 1998 by the Boy Scouts of America
Field Book, Copyright 1967, 1984 by the Boy Scouts of America
Okpik: Cold-Weather Camping, Copyright 1990 by the Boy Scouts of America
OA Guide to Winter Camping, Copyright 1995 Rick Curtis, Outdoor Action Program, Princeton University