Sleeping conditions along with keeping warm and having the proper nutrition is key to
making winter camping enjoyable.

· The body cools down during sleep. The blood (heat) is drawn from the extremities and brought to the center  
core) of the body
· The ground is always colder than the body. Proper insulation must be provided to prevent heat loss by
C-O-L-D, is the key to staying warm

C   Your bedding should have washable liner so that it stays Clean

O   To keep from Overheating, bedding must be vent able

L   Bedding should be lightweight and large enough to accommodate you. Use a Layered system

D   Keep gear as Dry as possible, push all the warm, moist air out in the morning and then air and dry
the bag in the morning sun

Ground / Floor Insulation

· Good insulation should cover the entire floor of the sleeping area
· Adequate protection under a sleeping bag requires a minimum of 3/8 to ½ inch thickness of a good firm
insulation. A 1" thick open-cell foam pad is not adequate; it gives much less than half at the pressure points
(hips, shoulders, ect...)
· The open-cell pad can be used on top of another pad

Sleeping Bags

· Sleeping bags for winter camping should be rated to temperatures below what you expect to experience
during the trip if you want to be comfortable.
· Using two lighter bags in combination is a popular and efficient choice
· Construction and fabric
(fills) vary and should be considered (in terms of price, weight, volume) carefully before
purchase and/or use.
(see discussion on Insulating Materials)

Washable, Insulating Liner

· Good investment if chosen properly it can double as an ultra-lightweight summer bag
· Wash often, keeping sleeping gear clean and dry for optimal insulating performance


· Feet are critical, dry feet use foot powder with aluminum chlorohydrate, wear loose insulator (socks can not be
· Use a  "sleeping suit", a clean, dry set of thermal underwear (if temperatures warrant, a second, looser layer
can be added)
· Stocking cap, wristlets, scarf can be used at night as long as they are dry and clean
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

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