Oct 18, 2009 at 7:26 pm #1240363
Herewith is my winter gear list. The weather here in Ohio is not so bad as in the high Sierras, and I can cheat a little on food by eating a big breakfast on the way to the trailhead.
Everything is in oz until the bottom totals, which are in pounds.
I haven't distinguished mathematically between gear in pockets and on person and gear in my backpack (=BP), since it all has to be carried anyway.
I've included ziplocks and stuff sacks by weighing them with some of the items (like the shelter, quilt, and first-aid kit.
Your suggestions will be gracefully and gratefully accepted. I want to limit the amount I carry, but I don't want to freeze either. Thus, I've added a Heatsheets bivy and extra stakes to nail down The One shelter in case the weather turns nasty/ very cold, for example.)
Three Day winter trip/ Ohio
Clothes Worn/ Trekking poles
Trail Shoes – Vibram Neoprenes 16.40
Woolen toe socks 2.94
Bandana on carabiner 1.11
Long-sleeve shirt 9.50
Cap/ Buff w/ brim 2.12
Long Johns 13.75
Fleece pullover 9.50
Watch/ altimeter/ barometer, etc. 3.59
Thermasilk glove liners 0.78
GG Lighttrek 4 trekking poles 6.60
Toe Sock liners (sleeping and cold) 1.53
Possum down gloves 1.15
WalMart Poncho 2.02
Extra buff (for cold nights) 1.30
Newspaper bags(for feet and hands/ wet) 0.19
Camp shoes 1.00
GG The One 18.00
Poly ground cloth, extra titanium stakes 2.65
Nunatak Specialist Quilt 17.00
BPL Torsolite Pad 8.00
GG 1/8 inch foam pad 1.90
Heatsheets Emergency bivy 3.67
BPL inflatable pillows (2) 2.61
FF Alpine Trail Pack 6.30
Trash bag as pack liner 1.60
Cooking and Water
Caldera Cone and esbit Stove 1.53
BPL 550 cup and lid 2.08
Snack container hanging from belt 1.20
Titanium spork 0.32
Food bag/ cord for bear hanging 1.90
Hanging Line 1.00
Aqua Mira 0.83
900mL Evernew bladder 1.12
32 oz Gatorade bottle 1.90
Drugs, First Aid
Homemade first-aid kit, drugs 2.65
LED Lights, red & white on carabiner 1.08
TP, Trowel, alcohol (BP) 1.94
Hygiene: bsoda toothbrush, towel, etc. (BP) 3.42
Bug juice 0.00
Lip Balm 0.00
Reading glasses (around neck) 1.37
Box cutter (pocket) 0.27
Compass, Whistle, thermometer (lanyard) 1.14
Maps/ star maps (BP) 4.00
Travel wallet/ ID,CC, Key & $$ (pocket) 1.84
Book (in BP) 5.00
AM/ FM weather radio (in BP) 4.04
Camera, battery (pocket) 5.11
iPod Nano (pocket) 2.18
Carried or worn baseweight: subtotal: 198.77 (12.42 lb)
Food 3 x 1.5 = 4.5 lb
Esbit Fuel 3 16 gram pieces 0.10 lb
Water 1 L = 2.0 2.00
Consumables 6.60 lb
Total Carried or worn (BP and on person): 12.42
(of that, Worn: 4.96 lb)
Total Weight – skin out: 19.02
StargazerOct 18, 2009 at 8:01 pm #1537587
nmOct 18, 2009 at 9:08 pm #1537598
@verberLocale: San Francisco Bay Area
It would help if you listed the conditions you expected. My memory of ohio backpacking was no to small amounts of snow accumulations (often icky slush). Day temps 20-35F. Night times 15-30F. What are you expecting?
I look forward to hearing what temps the Vibram Neoprenes work for you.
I don't see any shell other than a poncho. With a fleece as insulation you would want something to break the wind.
If you aren't going strait from hiking to under the quilt you will want extra insulation like a nice high loft parka so you don't chill when you stop.
Is it a buff or polar buffs. If it's a normal buff I would bring a warmer hat or a balaclava. Especially since you are using a quilt to sleep.
I would be concern with the listed clothing and just the specialize quilt. I realize that I have lost track of ohio weather (last ohio backpacking trip was in the 1980s) but I seem to recall it getting down into the 20s F fairly regularly and I remember some boy scout Klondike outings and a trip or two in the hocking hills where we saw 0F conditions.
Weather pants are wonderful, durable pants which you won't go wrong with. Last winter I did several trips using the BPL Thorfare pants which are considerably lighter and preformed great. The DWR worked really well shedding snow. Hmm… but in Ohio, at least when I was doing winter backpacking it's often more like slush. If it's doing that hovering at freezing I might go for a base + waterproof breathable shells and skip the pants completely.
I would leave the T-shirt behind
If you are going to extract water from snow (I don't remember doing this in Ohio) I would want a larger pot.
You didn't say how much esbits… but I would add two extra tabs / night that would enable you to boil water to go into the gaitoraide bottle to use as a hot water bottle while you sleep if you need an extra boast.
Why a bearbag. I didn't remember bears in ohio, just raccoons who are pretty adept at getting hung bags.
–MarkOct 19, 2009 at 3:40 am #1537639
>It would help if you listed the conditions you expected. My memory of ohio backpacking was no to small amounts of snow accumulations (often icky slush). Day temps 20-35F. Night times 15-30F. What are you expecting?
Oops. Good point. The above is pretty accurate — although I am unlikely to backpack if the temperature is expected to get below 25 F at night or if the snow accumulation is expected to be over a couple of inches. Such is the privilege of the weekend warrior.
Ohio weather is pretty unpredictable, especially in the northern half of the state, but we don't get those big, unexpected snowfalls that one might get in true mountainous regions. (It will also help if I limit myself to places like the Shawnee State forest in the "deep south" of the state.
That's another reason to carry a weather radio. If the weather forecast looks bad, I can always hoof it back to the trailhead.
>BPL Thorfare pants which are considerably lighter and preformed great.
Good thought. My only issue with the BPL pants is the lack of a decent belt. I like to carry stuff in my pockets, including a 32 oz Gatorade bottle full of water (distributes the weight and keeps it handy). The Thorofare belt caused my pants to slide down slacker style.
Could I solve any of these problems, including the lack of a wind shell, by taking along a set of DriDucks? They aren't breathable, but they provide a nice vapor/ precip barrier and they weigh about 9 oz for the upper and lower shells. Could I get away with just the jacket? Should I break down and get a breathable "windbreaker" upper?
I forgot to mention that the Nunatak Specialist is overstuffed with an extra oz of down. I've had to out comfortably to at least freezing (if my water bottle is any indication). I figured that if the temperature falls below that, I could slip myself into the bag and the bag into the Heatsheets bivy, which, BTW, I recommend to everyone. It's cheap, lightweight, and adds at least 10 degrees to a sleeping bag (or at least it did when I used it down to 40 degrees with by BPL lightweight quilt this fall).
However, I'm not married to this one. The Heatsheets is pretty durable compared to most emergency bivies, but I'd hate to have the thing break through if the temperature got to 25 F! Anybody have any long-term experience with them?
One more thing: I wear the Buff balaclava style in cold weather, which works down to about freezing. Below that, I don the second Buff underneath the first one. The danged things are amazing. When I was on the AT, I wore them both to bed when the temperatures got below freezing enough to freeze my water bottle. That, a Pounder Plus, and every stitch of clothes I had, were enough to keep me relatively comfortable.
Does this make sense, or am I fooling myself into thinking that a minimalist approach will work in cold weather? I sleep (and walk) pretty warm, except for my fingers and toes, for which I have made extra provision, and I don't mind wearing every stitch of clothes I have with me into the bag.
Good point on the t-shirt. It's a summer item that I should have deleted from the winter list.
Oy. Long post. Sorry. Thanks for the great suggestions!
StargazerOct 19, 2009 at 3:52 am #1537640
>I look forward to hearing what temps the Vibram Neoprenes work for you.
Forgot to mention:
The Vibrams are fantastic. Last weekend, I wore them down to about 35 F during the day, and they were sufficiently dry to wear them right into the sleeping bag at night, when it got to about freezing. (Try that with a pair of hiking boots or ever trail runners. ) Great shoes! The issue that concerns me most is durability. They're pricey, and I'm not sure they'll last in the long run. A good set of wool toe socks helps. If the weather gets really cold, I'll add a set of toe-sock liners and see what happens.
Another plus: They are still pretty warm even when they get wet.
StargazerOct 19, 2009 at 3:59 am #1537641
Good point about the bear bag.
Although bears have been sighted in southern Ohio, the real reason to bear bag is to keep the other critters at bay: raccoons, mice, squirrels, etc. Besides, that BPL food bag is pretty tough and very light. I couldn't do as well with a stuff sack in terms of weight, and the cord adds very little weight.
However, my logic might be faulty here. I'm not sure whether I've never had any trouble because I consistently bear bag or because there was no trouble to be had in the first place.
StargazerOct 28, 2009 at 9:33 am #1540436
My insights into your WINTER list:
Three Day winter trip/ Ohio
T-shirt 4.24 – I'm sorry, How on earth do you change into a t-shirt in the winter? I advocate wearing your clothes out the door, and not changing anything except the outer layers during the trip. My record for a t-shirt staying on my body is 35 days (and yes, it stunk – BAD!)
Bandana on carabiner 1.11 – Nix the caribiner, you'll be fine without it.
Extra buff (for cold nights) 1.30 – one is fine.
Newspaper bags recommend(for feet and hands/ wet) 0.19 – (if I understand) I like this, and do something similar.
Camp shoes 1.00 (???) one ounce camp shoes? I recommend down booties. You can sleep in them.
Poly ground cloth, No need for a ground cloth in winter. the ground (and snow) is frozen (below 0c) so there is no moisture transfer. Nix the ground cloth
Nunatak Specialist Quilt 17.00 –
BPL Torsolite Pad 8.00
GG 1/8 inch foam pad 1.90
WOW, you are going out in winter with a 17 oz sleeping bag? And minimal sleeping pads? That's BOLD. THis is a summer set-up. Be careful!
Heatsheets Emergency bivy 3.67 – THe emergency bivy does NOT breath, it will make your VERY LIGHT sleeping bag wet. Be careful!
FF Alpine Trail Pack 6.30 – Is this a 6.3 OUNCE pack???
Food bag/ cord for bear hanging 1.90 – No need for bear hang in winter. Critters are minimal at night, just hang a lightweight stuff sack off the ground on a branch.
Hanging Line 1.00 – Nix
TP – Nix the TP, you'll be camping on SNOW, so you'll have the world's most perfect PEFECT TP.
towel – Towel and a bandana? No need for both. Just take the bandana.
Travel wallet/ ID,CC, Key & $$ (pocket) 1.84 – You can make this number ZERO by hiding it in the car (or near the car)
AM/ FM weather radio (in BP) 4.04 – I would nix this. You should be able to accurately check the weather before leaving on your trip.
I teach winter camping in Wyoming in the winter at 10,000 feet, so I deal with cold winter temps. To me, this is serious stuff. I grew up in michigan where it can get plenty cold.
I strongly suggest NOT wearing your shoes to bed at night. I teach backcountry first aid, and I have diagnosed immersion foot only once, and it was because of someone sleeping with their shoes on. Take down BOOTIES!
Here's what I don't see in your list:
– Down jacket
– adequately warm sleep system
– down booties
– water bottle insulator (like bubble wrap)
– adequate gloves or mittens
Keep us updated on how it goes – and BE CAREFUL!Oct 28, 2009 at 11:00 am #1540465
Wearing shoes to bed doesn't cause immersion foot. Going to bed with prolonged wet feet with no drying time may cause it. Dry feet put in shoes won't cause immersion foot overnight.Oct 28, 2009 at 11:15 am #1540471
"Poly ground cloth, No need for a ground cloth in winter. the ground (and snow) is frozen (below 0c) so there is no moisture transfer. Nix the ground cloth….TP – Nix the TP, you'll be camping on SNOW, so you'll have the world's most perfect PEFECT TP."
Are we talking about Rocky Mountain snow or Southern Ohio mud and deciduous leaf cover here?Oct 28, 2009 at 11:46 am #1540482
Good thoughts here, folks. Very helpful. I have only a second to clarify (I'm at work) so I'll respond a bit more later. For now,
>FF Alpine Trail Pack 6.30 – Is this a 6.3 OUNCE pack???
Yes! From Fanatic Fringe. It was originally 6 oz. but I added a .3 oz. sternum strap. I heartily recommend their products.
StargazerOct 28, 2009 at 11:49 am #1540484
>Are we talking about Rocky Mountain snow or Southern Ohio mud and deciduous leaf cover here?
Ha! You've been to Ohio, I see. Actually, the leaves are probably good enough. I've got to shake my TP addiction at some point or another.
StargazerOct 28, 2009 at 3:13 pm #1540566
Yes – it's the wet cold and CONSTRICTION that will cause immersion foot.
Shoes in winter will be (I suspect) wet cold and constricting.
I have a lot of winter and glacier experience, and I will stand by my statement. I think it is unwise to sleep with shoes on in a cold wet environment. Better to sleep with dry socks.
For extra insulation, (like with a 17 oz quilt in winter) down booties are wonderful.
also Recommended: Integral Designs HOT SOCKS
AND – – – About the ground cloth and if its truly needed. Winter in Ohio is different than the Tetons in winter. We have snow. If the ground is frozen, you wont have mud. And no need for a ground cloth. If you have snow, it won't be wet (especially at night, when its colder) so the pad will stay relativly dry.
And ditch the TP, you'll be fine!Oct 28, 2009 at 4:11 pm #1540581
@verberLocale: San Francisco Bay Area
Keep the groundcloth given the delightful conditions in Ohio winters.
The problem with ohio weather is that the temp bops above and below freezing the whole winter. Rarely does the ground freeze solid. Rarely is there dry snow (hmm… actually I never remember seeing rockies like powder… heck, not even sierra like powder). Since the snow and ground is so close to freezing… the slightest amount of warmth with turn it into slush and/or muck. It's close enough to the edge that just pulling a tent or pad on top of it is enough to turn it into a mess.
I don't mean to be cruel to Thomas… but I am SO GLAD I am no longer living in central ohio with it's gray sky, ever threat of rain, wishy-washy winters, humid summers, and basically flat landscape. California is like heaven. I do miss those occasional cool spring morning with clear sky (being rare they were a treasure), and the pretty leaves in the crisp fall air… but having mountains more than makes up for that :-)
–markOct 29, 2009 at 3:46 am #1540752
>The problem with ohio weather is that the temp bops above and below freezing the whole winter.
So true. The weather is much milder than in the mountains, but also SO unpredictable and sometimes very slushy/ muddy.
On the ground cloth, my main reason for carrying it is to protect the spinnaker-cloth bottom of The One. Gossamer Gear recommends it. In wet weather during the other seasons when I'm using my Contrail, I often put it inside the tent.
Good suggestions about items which are now gone: T-shirt, towel, extra Buff.
Instead of the T-shirt, I'll just wear a Mountaingear Windstopper vest if it looks like the temp will go below 25 F or so. Otherwise, I walk and sleep warm.
Just bought down booties in the form of the Integral Designs Hot Socks (4.7 oz). I'd love the Nunatak version (lighter and warmer), but they're a bit too rich for my blood right now.
I'm on the fence about the weather radio. It does seem like a lot of weight, but Ohio weather is SO unpredictable. I'll probably leave it at home, though, since I'm adding the booties.
Thanks for the good advice on the "warm wear." My Specialist is actually overstuffed with an extra ounce of down. I've slept in it successfully (wearing the buff and every stitch of clothes) down to 25 F. I do indeed have a down coat and I'll wear it if the forecast warrants. (Ohio meteorologists are only about 50-percent right about precipitation and cloud cover, but they're very good about the temp.)
The combination of silk glove liners and possum-down gloves has worked well for me, but you're right. I do have a heavy-duty set of mittens that I'd take along if the weather looked like it was going to be very nasty. Haven't used them much, though. One advantage of being a weekend warrior is that I can bail if the forecast is poor, which I tend to do in winter. My possum down gloves are a godsend, BTW. I've used them so much that they've worn holes in the fingers.
Good point also about the minimalist sleeping pads. I do indeed gave a full-thickness Gossamer Gear foam pad, which I'll take along if the weather looks to get very cold.
For three season use, I stick with the BPL Torsolite. It's the best 8 oz pad on the planet. On occasion, when the ground is rocky or cold (and dry enough to do so), I've added a layer of leaves under the tent. (One thing you can count on year round around here, it a lot of dried leaves.)
Shoot. Haven't I gone on and on . . .
Thanks for all the good advice!
StargazerOct 29, 2009 at 8:09 am #1540784
I agree with pretty much everything that's been said… though IIRC the GG pad you're talking about has an R-value of about 1, not warm enough for winter IME, though a nice addition to other pad. You'll soak your bag if you use the bivy over it, but if you use the Heatsheets as a VBL it'll be great. In your instance you have a floor, but when I've slept directly on snow I've found that my body heat melts the snow… so I do like some kind of groundsheet.
Blessed is the snow "TP!"Oct 29, 2009 at 8:25 am #1540791
Interesting. I've been using the Heatsheets over my Nunatak and leaving the quilt open on top to let the moisture out. (I'm not a big sweater since I lost 100 pounds.)
Should I wear it inside the quilt to act as a VBL?
StargazerOct 29, 2009 at 8:56 am #1540804
Yup. You're already using it as a VB. The bit of opening at the top won't be sufficient to prevent moisture build-up in the bag. Most people wouldn't recommend using VBs above freezing; I have into the 40s at time. I wear a thin layer of merino to bed (the same stuff I wear all day) and just keep it on when I get up… takes maybe 20 minutes for my body heat to dry the stuff thoroughly.Oct 29, 2009 at 11:13 am #1540854
I never ever use any kind of VB in a sleeping bag. For a three day trip, it's not needed.
I also find theat bivy sacks perform poorly as the temp drops. I have a 17 oz full gore-tex bivy, and it works great in cold weather, but it's heavy.
You are already in a tent. Nix the heat-sheet all together.
M!Oct 29, 2009 at 11:44 am #1540873
No, you don't need a VBL for moisture management on a short trip. But since it's a 32*F bag and there's little to no extra insulation, the ~15*F you could add with the heatsheet might be worth the ~3.7oz. Granted, 3.7oz more down might be more beneficial, but also probably much more expensive. You might consider adding a hooded down jacket to the system… (and then ditch the heatsheet)…
For that matter, maybe I have the wrong idea about Buffs, but a fleece Buff or two doesn't seem adequate as your only head insulation if you're trying to get in the 0-20*F range…
Mike- Your new avatar is great! Love it!
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