(From Contributor Silvia Watson) True wildlife enthusiasts love to go for a wildlife vacation only during the winter months so that they could enjoy the experience in a relaxed manner as the pristine forests would not be teeming with tourists like the summer months. They could have a peaceful communion with nature amidst the beauty and tranquility around them. But winter camping trips could be pretty challenging and the cold weather could be slightly overwhelming. Here are a few expert tips for surviving in the frozen wilderness. You need to put in far more efforts as compared to a wildlife vacation and camping in the summer months.
Consider Constructing a Snow Shelter
Snow could come to your rescue under extremely cold conditions and could protect you effectively against snowdrifts and wind that you would come across in the wilderness. This could be an exhilarating experience, not unlike watching a TVG race replay, where you have access to statistics, information, and footage across more than 150 horse-racing tracks. While in the wilderness, you need to construct a safe enclosure. Construct a temporary snow shelter that is roughly 8 inches in thickness. You could consider scraping the snow right down to the ground level to effectively make the most of the radiant heat generated from the ground.
You need to dress up in layers to keep yourself warm and cozy in the wilderness despite the cold weather. You may wear polyester thermal underwear as a base layer to keep your body warm and snug. You may opt for a breathable fleece to avoid unbearable perspiration. If you have a fascination for natural fibers, you may opt for wool fleece blends and merino wool. Carry a lightweight jacket which is waterproof and breathable. Pack a neck gaiter or scarf that you may wear or take off for effectively regulating the body temperature. Also carry a light jacket which is nice, warm, and breathable. Layering is the most effective way of keeping your feet warm.
Take Utmost Care of Your Hands
Keeping your hands warm is really important. Pack gloves, polyester glove liners, and gauntlets for layering. You never know how adverse the conditions can get. Also, stock up on chemical heating pads and hot water packs for the times when you might need a burst of heat.
Fire First, Think Later
The first thing you have to do after arriving at your campsite is to start a fire. Pack plenty of fire sources and plan this well beforehand. You could also use dryer link in film canisters or pill bottles for fuel, or take the high-tech road and use magnesium-based fire starters.
Always Stay Hydrated
Hydration is by no means overrated- even if you aren’t thirsty in the cold, you must stay hydrated at all times. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that hydration isn’t important in winter because it is. Drink warm or cold water, hot chocolate, tea, or coffee whenever possible. These beverages will also provide calories which will in turn fuel your adventure.
Being alert is really important on an outdoor trip. Besides keeping all of these points in mind, you will also have to set up a good campsite. Expert summer campers will suggest taking the most secluded and shadiest spot. For the winter, however, it’s a good idea to align yourself in a spot where the morning sun can reach you. This can be done by noting where the sun appears at sunrise and adjusting the tent to be able to get some early rays in but not compromising its integrity against the winds. These little things go a long way in ensuring you are safe and sound.