PDA

View Full Version : Winter Backpacking Gear list?



Airgirl
02-17-2015, 20:57
What does your winter backpacking gear include? I am going to start doing some backpacking trips in the southern Appalachains soon and am new to winter backpacking, but don't want to carry a heavier load than necessary.
Especially: how do you keep warm when temps are between 15-30 degrees? I tend to get cold, especially when sleeping.

Feral Bill
02-17-2015, 21:45
What does your winter backpacking gear include? I am going to start doing some backpacking trips in the southern Appalachains soon and am new to winter backpacking, but don't want to carry a heavier load than necessary.
Especially: how do you keep warm when temps are between 15-30 degrees? I tend to get cold, especially when sleeping. Around freezing is especially tough. Fleece or wool base layers, a thicker fleece top, and a good shell (including shell pants) are the basics. Add mittens (not gloves) with liners, a wool or fleece beanie, and a light wool scarf. The scarf adds more warmth for its weight than anything. A down vest or jacket and plenty of wool socks, too. There is no footwear I know of that's totally satisfactory.

For gear, a white gas stove, thick down bag (0-10 degrees rating), and plenty of insulation underneath. 2 foam pads or one really thick one work for me.

Studlintsean
02-17-2015, 23:14
I sent this to a friend recently. This is what I brought on a recent trip with teens/20s/30s during the day, some rain, snow and sleet. Nighttime temps were upper teens/low 20s night one and upper 20s night two.

Big 4
Pack- ULA Equipment Circuit
Sleeping Bag- Western Mountaineering Alipinelite 20 deg bag
Sleeping Pad- Thermarest Neoair All Season
Shelter- Borah Gear 5.5 X 9 Tarp and Borah Gear Bivy


Clothes Worn- I would shed layers (rain jacket, hat, gloves) on up hills to try to keep from sweating too bad in the cold weather.
REI Lightweight Base Layer Pants
Champion Running Shorts on top
Exofficio Boxer Briefs
REI Lightweight Sahara Synthetic Tee Shirt
Paradox Lightweight Merino Wool Quarter Zip
Darn Tough Socks
Brooks Cascadia 7 Trail Runners
Marmot Precip Rain Jacket
Wool Beannie
Fleece Gloves
Bandanna
Trekking Poles


Clothes for Camp/Sleep (in Sea to Summit stuff sack- These are kept in a contractor trash bag in the bottom of my pack to keep dry at all costs. Must have these dry to put on at camp. Sleeping bag is also in the trash bag.
REI Heavyweight Base Layer Pants
Patagonia Capilene 4 Quarter Zip
Outdoor Research Beannie
Montbell Alpine Down Parka
REI Expedition Weight Socks
Darn Tough Socks (for next day if other pair are wet)
Water proof mittens
Rain pants (these are kept outside pack to put on if needed)
Crocs for camp


Food/ Cook Kit
GSI Soloist Pot
Plastic Spoon
MSR Whisperlite Cannister Stove and 4 oz cannister
Bic Mini Lighter
Aquamira to treat water
1 liter platypus x 2 (for drinking during the day)
2 liter platypus (to fill for camp)
Cut off bottom of water bottle to scoop water and pour in bottle
Zpacks Blast Food Bag with food


Miscellaneous

First aid kit (inhaler, advil, tums, few band-aids,duct tape, needle, spare batteries)
Map
Camera
Cell Phone
50 ft Kelty Trip Tease
Knife
Backup Mini Bic Lighter
Headlamp
Vasilese Cotton Balls in a medicine container.

This works for me but may differ for you. Hope this helps.

The Cleaner
02-17-2015, 23:24
I hate to give you bad news but hiking in winter when death from hypothermia is a real possibility, you will have to pack things that you may not use mostly clothing items and a heavier sleeping bag. Having fire starting material and a small saw are nice to have too. Just having a fire makes you feel better, since humans discovered fire a few eons ago they have found it to be useful and you can cook on it too. Just don't build a large rock ring, use only really dry wood and you won't leave too much damage behind.

rocketsocks
02-18-2015, 00:21
mini bics are nice, fire steel is a great back up...but bring some matches, real matches, they're really not all that heavy and don't take up all that much space. You'll be glad you did.

2NewKnees
02-18-2015, 00:31
Sierra Designs Sirius 2P tent, MH 20 degree bag, Big Agnes inflatable sleeping pad, Gigi power stove and fuel canister, titanium cookset, SOL survival blanket. I pack extra clothes in the winter to change into after hiking all day. I have a base layer long sleeve UA shirt I wear to hike in, with a wind/ rain jacket over that. I also wear a t shirt over the long sleeve t. I wear convertible long pants, merino wool socks, light weight UA gloves that block wind fairly well. I carry long johns to put on as soon as my tent is set up at camp. And I change socks to new dry ones, merino wool. I carry a North Face Summit series jacket with hood that I got for Christmas that packs down nicely to use as a pillow. For my bald head, I have a UA beanie to hike it which dries quickly in my sleeping bag at night and I carry another beanie to wear at night. I also carry a pair of warm fleece lined waterproof gloves to wear around camp. If my head and feet are warm then usually I am ok. If it is going to be really cold, I'll carry my 0 degree sleeping bag. Of course I have a first aid kit that is home made with only essentials, extra batteries for the headlamp, bathroom kit, and food. I also have a pair of hiking crampons to carry for icy areas. That's about it. Pack more warm clothes and take care of your core body temperature and I think you should be good!

Feral Bill
02-18-2015, 00:39
I have to disagree with those suggesting a canister stove. If it's cold enough they won't work at all, at least without serious babying. (Canister warming in you armpit, or worse) Get a white gas stove and learn how to use it safely.

squeezebox
02-18-2015, 00:41
And bring somebody with you.

squeezebox
02-18-2015, 00:46
So what's the right way to safely release the pressure of a white gas canister?

PennyPincher
02-18-2015, 01:27
And bring somebody with you.

I was just going to say this. The chance for injury or issue is greatly increased in cold weather. Having a partner in case you get hurt who can make sure you stay warm (even if they have no other training) while awaiting a rescue could very easily save your life. See what just transpired in the Whites in NH this week.

Feral Bill
02-18-2015, 01:49
So what's the right way to safely release the pressure of a white gas canister? Let it cool, (Svea). Follow the directions (MSR etc.) No Need, Really AFAIK.

LoneStranger
02-18-2015, 10:24
If possible do some cold weather testing at home or next to your car somewhere before heading into actual back country. What you need to stay warm is very personal. Much better to figure that out safely than learning the hard way on the trail.

Change into dry layers as soon as you make camp if you've gotten damp while hiking. Fires are hot but they also don't help nearly as much as good insulation and wind protection. The wind can carry away most of the heat and standing down wind means holes in the gear you need to keep you warm. I rarely make a fire in any season, but I will admit they give you something to do to pass the time :) Just don't count on a fire to keep warm. Bring the right clothes for your needs.

For sleeping I have two pads under me with a 40f down quilt and a 20f synthetic on top. I can take that into low sub zero temps in fleece sleeping layers, but I found out the other night that at -15f I should sleep in my puffy jacket and pants. Luckily I found that out in the back yard rather than in the Whites because I called off a planned trip due to the temps and was just testing at home.

For a stove I found out the hard way that old school canister stoves can only be taken down so low. Newer stoves invert the canister so it is used more like a liquid gas stove and are better in the cold. White gas is the way to go if you expect really cold temps.

Easing into cold weather camping rather than jumping in with both feet is the best way to go. It has taken me a few years to get the gear together to go as cold as i do now. Mistakes can be deadly in any season, but the margin of error is thin in the cold so go slow and be prepared to change your plans along with changing weather.

Frye
02-18-2015, 10:36
I have to disagree with those suggesting a canister stove. If it's cold enough they won't work at all, at least without serious babying. (Canister warming in you armpit, or worse) Get a white gas stove and learn how to use it safely.

Inverted canister stove is my preference for below freezing backpacking. Just make sure it's a proper inverted setup with preheat tube. I think my Spider was like 60 bucks and weighs 6 oz's.

White gas is antique tech. The only time I'd consider it is if I were to do an extended winter trip where I couldn't resupply. Even then I'm not sure, I just don't have the information to say which way I'd go as I've never looked into it.

Also, alcohol works below freezing. I was using my keg this New Years when the temp hit 15 with no problems. I had more problems getting my lighter lit than I actually did getting the stove going. Forgot my matches so I had to dip a stick in fluid and use a makeshift one.

illabelle
02-18-2015, 11:22
Airgirl, I don't keep up with all the ins-and-outs of gear, but I share your issue of sleeping cold. I'll share what I do; maybe some of it will help you.

All of my backpacking is with my husband, so there's an extra measure of safety in the fact that we can share body heat. If I were hiking alone, I might be inclined to do differently.

1. One of the most important things (as mentioned above) is to have dry clothes to sleep in. Keep them dry at all costs.
2. Can be kinda tricky, but try to find a balance between staying dry and staying warm while hiking. Use hat, gloves, vest, extra layers, adding and subtracting as necessary to avoid sweating, and to minimize the deep chilling that occurs during an extended period in cold temps. (I think this is my problem. I may feel okay while hiking, but not realize how really cold I am until I'm lying still in the sleeping bag and my buttocks and thighs feel like ice.) I've seen people hiking in their rain gear in cold dry weather, and wondered how they could do that without getting sweaty. Perhaps they do sweat, but feel that retaining heat is more important than staying dry.
3. Use down/fleece garments as blankets inside the bag. They are very helpful! I often zip up a jacket and slip it over my lower legs.
4. Invest in a pair of down booties. Wear a hat while sleeping.
5. After setting up your gear for the night, and having your supper, do some more walking or some exercises to warm yourself up. Easier to warm the bag if you're warm to start with.

Wolf - 23000
02-18-2015, 20:29
Airgirl,

If you are getting cold easy when sleeping you may have the wrong fitting sleeping bag. A common mistake many new (and old) hikers make is when selecting a sleeping bag, basing on the bag rating/weight. A low rating does not mean you will stay warm. Prior to picking out your sleeping bag, physically get inside the bag. If you have a lot of room inside your sleeping bag, then it is the wrong bag regardless of the rating. The more dead space you have inside your bag, requires more work for your body needs to spend to heat up your bag to stay warm.

I always have a VB to use especially in the winter/colder weather. A VB only weigh a few ounces but has several benefits. One it adds extra warmth, 10 – 15 degrees. Two, if your hiking in a cold rain it will add an extra layer of protection in keeping your sleeping bag dry. Something that is extremely important.

If you were worry about weight, as long as you know what you’re doing, it is not that hard to keep your base weight under 10 pounds even in the 15 – 30 temperature. I personally enjoy winter hiking. Several times I’ve winter hiked the southern AT.

Wolf

Malto
02-18-2015, 21:52
First invest in a good pad. look at something like an Xtherm or equivalent. You want an R5 or greater for winter.

Others have covered gear. I also have used VBL extensively over the last three years and swear by it. Want to dip your toe in. Put on bread bags between a light sock liner and insulating sock. You may be surprised at the difference. Couple other tips. Eat before going to sleep, especially a mix of carbs and fat. It helps. I also found it better to not bundle up immediately when bedding down. I wait till I wake up a bit cool to put on another layer. Going to bed overdressed could result in sweating which could be very counter-productive. Other things that help is site selection, that could be a thread in itself. It can make a big difference in how cold you get.

bottom line, part of the game is gear but it is also much more technique. One caution. Some that have learned to use UL gear in cold weather have also mastered the technique to go with the gear. Take the gear without the technique and you may have much different results.

Feral Bill
02-18-2015, 21:53
Inverted canister stove is my preference for below freezing backpacking. Just make sure it's a proper inverted setup with preheat tube. I think my Spider was like 60 bucks and weighs 6 oz's.That is a reasonable choice.

White gas is antique tech. The only time I'd consider it is if I were to do an extended winter trip where I couldn't resupply. Even then I'm not sure, I just don't have the information to say which way I'd go as I've never looked into it.
Antique or not, it works well, every time.

Also, alcohol works below freezing. If your food planning allows, sure. I was using my keg this New Years when the temp hit 15 with no problems. I had more problems getting my lighter lit than I actually did getting the stove going. Forgot my matches so I had to dip a stick in fluid and use a makeshift one. ........................

tuswm
02-22-2015, 14:00
ok i didnt read the whole thread. wear larger size shoes or boots, so u can wear thicker or more socks, more insulation, warmer socks.

LoneStranger
02-22-2015, 18:47
ok i didnt read the whole thread. wear larger size shoes or boots, so u can wear thicker or more socks, more insulation, warmer socks.
Careful with overdoing the socks. You don't want to cut off circulation. In my insulated boots I wear a thinner setup than I do in my leather summer boots so there is plenty of room for over heated blood to get down there where it can do some good.

Sarcasm the elf
02-22-2015, 21:38
I have to disagree with those suggesting a canister stove. If it's cold enough they won't work at all, at least without serious babying. (Canister warming in you armpit, or worse) Get a white gas stove and learn how to use it safely.

I have to agree with this, my buddy's MSR Pocket Rocket stops working well around 30 degrees. I can get my jetboil to function somewhat, but it takes a lot of monkeying to get it to work below about 20 degrees. There's good reason that white gas stoves are still the standard for serious winter camping.

Wolf - 23000
02-23-2015, 09:44
Just like several others, I too use an alcohol stove - for southern winter hiking. Winter hiking in the North (Maine, NH, VT) an alcohol stove is a bad idea. It also depending on the design of your stove of course - different alcohol stoves boil water faster than others.

If you go with white gas, I strongly suggest testing your stove out several times first prior to going. I don't know how many times I've seen a "fire ball" of flames go up from hikers not knowing how to properly use their stove. The suction cup - inside the pump may require a little care prior to leaving - they tend to dry out fairly quickly.

Which one is better alcohol or white gas? Well that really depends on you. If your only cooking 1 meal a day and not using your stove for hot drinks around camp - spend more time hiking than camping then alcohol might be the better choice because of its lighter weight. If you are planning on spending more time camping, like having hot drinks along with your dinner than gas might be a better choice.

Wolf

Demeter
02-23-2015, 11:19
Here is a post I have on my blog about what I carry, along with a link to my geargrams list. Not for everyone, but what works for me and I sleep very cold! http://demeters-dish.blogspot.com/2014/04/winter-backpacking-gear-list-for-very.html

Connie
02-23-2015, 11:31
I haven't mentioned this in forum, before, but zelph modified his Super Stove for white gas.

I have one: reliable, no mechanical parts, small and lightweight.

I have had it for years: works great.

Uses very little white gas. Hot.

It will burn kerosene but kerosene is stinky.

White gas is stinky, if it gets on your gear.

Connie
02-23-2015, 11:36
Demeter, http://demeters-dish.blogspot.com/2014/04/winter-backpacking-gear-list-for-very.html?m=1

The Blogspot doesn't work for iPod iOS.

I see the start of the article... That's it.

I click it and I get only orange wherls turning, then, right back to the starting link.

Every time. Every Blogspot link.

goldbug
02-25-2015, 16:14
Also, remember to completely change out of the clothes you hiked in, right down to your skivvies. A clean, 100% dry set of clothes helps keep you warm!!!

Airgirl
02-28-2015, 16:32
So my test run was walk in camping with my gear at 30 degree low temp: Kelty Women's 20 degree dridown bag (rated for 28 degrees comfort haha) mummy bag, Exped Symat UL 7. Wearing: synthetic long underwear top and bottom, long sleeve lightweight hiking shirt, midweight fleece jacket, fleece pants, wool hat, fleece gloves, silk liner socks, wool socks.

So I'm thinking perhaps I need a warmer sleeping bag in addition to a more insulated pad? Would adding a sleeping bag liner be helpful or so I just look or a warmer bag?

Eywa Dude
02-28-2015, 16:41
Sorry, don't mind this post, this is just a test. Just trying to get my signature to work. Carry on. lol :P .....

Eywa Dude
02-28-2015, 16:44
Yay! It worked! Again, sorry everyone! lol.....

Connie
02-28-2015, 17:34
So my test run was walk in camping with my gear at 30 degree low temp: Kelty Women's 20 degree dridown bag (rated for 28 degrees comfort haha) mummy bag, Exped Symat UL 7. Wearing: synthetic long underwear top and bottom, long sleeve lightweight hiking shirt, midweight fleece jacket, fleece pants, wool hat, fleece gloves, silk liner socks, wool socks.

So I'm thinking perhaps I need a warmer sleeping bag in addition to a more insulated pad? Would adding a sleeping bag liner be helpful or so I just look or a warmer bag?

You were not warm? What Kelty model sleeping bag?

I am trying to find out down fill? features? draft collar?

LIhikers
02-28-2015, 22:23
Before you spend a lot of money on another sleeping bag, try adding a closed cell foam pad under the Exped mat.

squeezebox
02-28-2015, 22:37
Does a small tarp set up vertical as a wind break make enough sense to afford the extra wt. ? Keeping a cold wind out of your tent or hammock could mean a lot in comfort.

Duramax22
03-01-2015, 15:41
Winter Backpacking Gear list
o Granite Gear Crown 60
o Western Mountaineering Versalite 10
o Tarptent Moment DW
o Thermarest Neo-air All Season
o MSR Pocketrocket
o Snow Peak 900ml Titanium Pot
o Snow Peak Titanium Spork
o MSR Fuel Canister
o Steripen Adventure Pen
o Sawyer Squeeze
o Zippo Handwarmer/Filler
o 1oz Dropper bottle w/ fuel
o Mora Light my Fire Knife
o Dyneema Ironwire
o Tyvek Sheet
o Candle
o REI Thermometer
o Toothbrush
o Toothpaste
o Floss
o Black Diamond Spot
o 3-Hairties
o Compass
o Whistle
o Katoohla Microspikes
o Duct Tape
o 3-Safety Pins
o 2-CR123 Batteries
o 3-Energizer Lithium AAA
o Buckle
o Pad Patch Kit
o Shammy
o Toilet Paper
o Black Diamond Trekking Poles w/ baskets
o Carabiner
o Pack Cover
o Bubble Wrap Envelope
o Baby Wipes
o Ziploc Bowl
o Cellphone
o Cash
o Credit Card
o Insurance Card
o Map
o Guidebook
o Sunglasses


Medkit
o Blistex
o 3m Coban Wrap
o Tweezers
o Gauze
o 3-Johnson&Johnson Non-Stick Trauma Pads
o 6- Bandaids
o 2-Anti-biotic Packs
o 1-First Aid Cream Pack
o 3-Alcohol Prep Pads
o 2-Benadryl
o 2-Lopermide Hydrochloride
o 2-Pepto Bismol Tablets
o 2-Dayquil Packs
o 2-Nyquil Packs
o Aleve
o Ibuprofen
Winter Clothing
o Under Armour T-Shirt
o Adidas Climalite Shorts
o Smartwool NTS Midweight Baselayer
o Marmot Quasar Down Jacket
o Marmot ROM Jacket
o Marmot Scree Pants
o Marmot Precip Jacket
o Marmot Connect Active Gloves
o Marmot Dri-Clime Gloves
o Marmot Randonee Gloves
o Columbia Ski-Pants
o Columbia Titanium Fleece
o Under Armour Compression Shorts
o Backcountry Buff
o Beanie
o Baffin Basecamp Booties
o Outdoor Research Verglas Gaiters
o 3-Darn Tough Lightweight Socks
Patagonia Capilene 1 Baselayer Top

Duramax22
03-01-2015, 15:46
some of this i only bring when it gets cold like 0-15 degrees, but i start with this list and take away what i wont need based on weather conditons, length of hike, and location

tuswm
03-01-2015, 18:14
Before you spend a lot of money on another sleeping bag, try adding a closed cell foam pad under the Exped mat.
Makes a Big Difference!

If that isnt enough try a tent that has less ventilation. If that still isn't enough try the Marmot Never summer down bags. (best budget Down 0 bags IMHO)