Winter camping requires more and slightly different gear than a usual summer trip does. What gear you pack and what gear you wear could mean the difference between life and death if temperatures and weather turn below freezing.
Below, we list the essential winter camping items you need to make the next winter adventure both safer and pleasant.
Bare minimum clothing you must have:
- Base layer
- Thermal layer
- Winter pants
- Jacket, coat, or vest
- Cold weather socks
- Hat or beanie
- A balaclava
It's essential to layer your clothing so you don't overheat, sweat, and then freeze. To avoid that, carefully choose the right base layer that touches your skin. Make sure its main purpose is to keep moisture away from your body.
- Equipment and Tools
You're going to need a tent, sleeping bag, and a portable stove. But what else?
- Map of the area
- Fire starting kit
- Extra fuel for a portable stove
- Hand-crank radio
- Tactical multi-tool
- Survival knife
- Shovel or E-tool
- Sleeping pad. You'll need resistance to conductive heat loss during the night and putting a layer between you and the cold ground is the best way to do it.
- Calorie dense, nutrient high snacks. Your body and body heat run on fuel, so snack often and eat hot meals.
- Tent repair kit. Having a working shelter is crucial.
- Emergency Supplies
Always be ready for the worst, so you are never caught unprepared.
- First aid kit
- Ice ax or pick
• Two Itineraries: One left with a friend and one under the car seat.
- Snivel Gear and Comfort Items
If you have the room for it, it's always better prepared for random snowmelt or an extreme dip in temps. Here are some suggestions to toss in with the camping essentials.
- Extra boots
- Airtight food containers
- Wet-weather gear
- Hand warmers
- Camping chair
- Solar chargers
Always pack what you know you will need for the duration of your trip, plus a two-day extra supply of food in case of the unexpected. Our items are a bare-bones list of essential winter camping items so feel free to use these as a starting point to customize your gear and pack right to get the most out of your winter adventures.