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October 2011

Fall Hiking: In Camp

Learn how to pick the perfect campground and keep your food, and yourself, toasty in dipping temps.
fall hiking in camp 445x260Illustration by Supercorn

Prevent Food Freeze-Ups

» Use insulated mugs and bowls to keep drinks and entrées steaming. Store leftover servings or lunches in an insulated pot like Innate’s Shiru Vacuum Food Container ($21-28, innate-gear.com).
» Keep water bottles from freezing by wrapping them in insulated sleeves (or wool socks) and storing upside-down to keep the mouth ice-free.
» Cook heat-holding meals. Gooey foods lose heat faster than all-liquid ones, so cook soup instead of thicker sauces. Also, opt for whole foods. Preservatives in over-processed meals freeze quickly.

Conserve Posthike Heat

» Add insulating layers. Your first step at any halt should be to preserve body heat. At day’s end, change into dry baselayers.
» Eat a snack and brew hot drinks as you set up camp. Snack again before bedtime; digestion raises body temperature.
» Keep blood circulating. Light exercise—jumping jacks or stretching—creates a warming afterburn. Just don’t get sweaty.
» Use a small tent. A low-volume shelter requires less body heat to warm. Be sure to vent it if condensation builds up.
» Carry a mini heater.  A tightly closed bottle filled with hot (not boiling) water acts as a radiator when tucked into your sleeping bag or clothing.

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