- Jul 19, 2017 at 5:07 am #3479642
Never having to deal with Deep cold before I a intimidated a little by thoughts of -40C.
I do think I have can a sleeping system that will cope with that now tho; even if it is perhaps heavier than minimum it would be very flexible.
So my next worry is a modern LW system for cold camping and the niggle about being ultra safe Vs being loaded down with too much stuff that even tho each item may be LE the ttal is too much
Hot-tenting the fellers over at Winter Camping will looked after me and I have a heavy traditional system all sorted and ready to use
I want to do some solo travelling.skiing using skis and boots I am comfortable and reasonably skilled with
I’ve decided on using Polartec ThermalPro with a LW wind shell as my main pants layer with Patagonia MARS pants as extra insulation
A Polartec ThermalPro hooded top with windshell as my main torso layer, a Patagonia Nano-bivvy as supplemental active insulation and I am ordering a Nanatuk Skaha pullover [ with 50% overfill] as my passive layer.
I have some surplus nylon windpants that I would probably add for extra leg protection but do I need to bring the M-65 liners as well?
Or given the possibilty of a chinook and rain are waterproof pants enough?
A similar question for my torso, will I plan to bring or buy an overparka and if so how warm should it beSep 24, 2017 at 12:26 am #3492889
No replies so I have asked the question in a poor way I guess.
I have looked at Andrew Skurkas Alaska winter gear list and my clothing is actually pretty close to his stuff but I was wondering what happens if a big wind came up and it got really cold.
AS says that he had gear to cope with -40F but I don’t see that statement amplified as to how. Would that have been a hunkered down rating bundled up inside the sleeping bag wearing all the clothing or a walk as hard as possible high MET rating?
It’s also why I asked if I should include a big mother overparka or not and carry the extra kilo
A.S. has a weight of 15.4 kilos base weight, mine is a lot higher because I will be taking a double skin tent and a lot more mattress but even so I can get my base weight to a reasonable 19 kilos, this is only 8 kilos more than my winter ski touring base weight here in Oz
So where do I save weight, less day time clothing or less sleeping bag and wear all my clothing to bed if it gets very cold, old bones mean I won’t be skimping on the mattress system or I won’t get any sleepSep 24, 2017 at 1:06 am #3492898
My suggestion would be to take a pulk and pull your load rather than carry it. It gives you more flexibility to take heavier stuff, like that parka. I can tell you as a lifelong Alaskan, you don’t want to take chances with temps that cold. I’m not sure where in Alaska you plan to be, I’m assuming the interior or northern AK since we don’t see temps that cold in southcentral. Take a shovel- using the snow to enhance or even replace your shelter can be a huge bonus. Have more than one way to get warmed up, including taking some sort of heater, whether it be the zippo fuel pocket warmers, or chemical pocket warmers, or whatever. Those things can save your butt.Sep 24, 2017 at 2:20 am #3492902
Somebody recommended the Gates of the Arctic national park
Yes I was planning for the possibility of a pulk because I use one here for my base-camping tripsSep 24, 2017 at 11:56 am #3492948
Tipi WalterBPL Member
I do alot of winter backpacking and my usual arctic temps (in the mountains of NC and TN) can reach -10F and sometimes -15 on occasion. How do I withstand this kind of cold on long trips? Geese.
Of course you already know about your sleeping system, but as far as clothing I recommend the highest quality goose down clothing you can find. This stuff is NOT my hiking clothing. For that I use patagonia capilene and turtle fur tuques and Icebreaker merino balaclava and merino leggings and even down mittens etc. Fleece jacket for hiking in extreme cold.
But for camp if I’m not in my bag I’m sitting around in my WM down pants and Feathered Friends Icefall parka. It’s a sleeping bag with arms. Going overkill with the geese eliminates the need for a hot tent and the stuff is light enough to forgo a pulk.Sep 24, 2017 at 5:27 pm #3492991
Thanks for jumping in Walter
I had planned on getting a new down jumper custom from Nunatak; mainly because I’ve grown out of my big Everest parka over the last 25/30 years, although I could still wear it over my base layers it is designed to fit over more layers than that and being an Everest duvet it is heavily overstuffed and weighs 1350 grams anyway [ 4 inches thick 8 inches of loft in the torso half that in the arms is that too much for the Arctic?]
Do I really need a full 4 inches of down tho or will 2.5″ be enough when combined with the other layers and should i still make myself the big shell anorak?
When you are an XXL in normal clothing the weight of a full system really adds up quicklySep 26, 2017 at 6:34 pm #3493469
Eric BlumensaadtBPL Member
@danepackerLocale: Mojave Desert
Dena’s correct. Use a pulk if at all possible.
If’n it were me I’d take my -20 F. LL Bean down bag and wear my puffy jacket and pants over polar weight long johns and heavy “sleep socks”. Then I’d put on my fleece balaclava and over that, my face mask. Of course I’d be inside a double wall tent or, preferably, inside a snow cave or quinzhee cave.
My coldest night was -22 F. but that was inside a quinzhee so I was much warmer in that man-made snow shelter.
Sep 27, 2017 at 6:39 pm #3493592
- This reply was modified 1 year, 2 months ago by Eric Blumensaadt.
Eric’s suggestion of a snow shelter is spot on (they stay a constant 32°F if properly constructed- warmer if you use a candle for light and a little heat). Also his suggestion on a balaclava is a good one- I take a balaclava with me into the back country almost year round, and always for sleeping even in summer (summertime mountain temps in Alaska can drop to nearly freezing). A balaclava, IMO, does a better job at reducing heat loss at the head and neck than a sleeping bag hood alone, and having your face covered and warm will keep you from burrowing into your bag and can reduce wetting your bag out with your breath.Sep 27, 2017 at 9:52 pm #3493616
I’ll take that on board and hope to practice when i get over although I have dug a snow cave once.
My gear list does include 2 balaclavas, an UL helmet liner and my old Patagonia PEF&Pile for extreme cold, said Patagonia balaclava has saved my life on at least 2 occasions as it is so warm and it is large enough to layer over the UL one if neededSep 29, 2017 at 10:23 pm #3493995
I had planned on getting a new down jumper from Nunatak to replace the old Everest Parka
I’d really appreciate some idea on how much insulation is needed in the feather layer for these temperatures in your experiences I just can’t see myself wearing too much extra over the proposed 3 layers of my planned kit
I would have thought adding 50mm of insulation on top would have been enoughOct 2, 2017 at 7:21 pm #3494439
You mentioned that you only have a 3 layer kit and honestly I’m not sure that’s warm or flexible enough.
A standard layering system for me in winter is:
- Light merino or synthetic base layer.
- Heavier insulating layer, such as a 200 weight long sleeved fleece
- A third layer (used generally only when not moving much, in camp, or sleeping) very heavy weight wool or 300 weight fleece sweater
- A synthetic or down puffy. I take the synthetic if I think sweat or precip will wet out the down. Down otherwise.
- A wind shell large enough to go over all of this at once.
- Synthetic long johns
- Synthetic pants
- Snow pants that are both waterproof and windproof.
(The weight and insulation of all the lower body items is highly dependent on expected conditions and anticipated activity level- it may be very light weight or very heavy weight)
I also generally wear two pairs of sock and use a balaclava with an additional toque on top. Again, adjusting the headgear as needed to reduce perspiration.
I adjust the amount of pieces I am wearing on my upper body based on exertion and conditions. The 5 pieces I wear may get rotated in and out during the day as sometimes I’m hotter, sometimes I’m colder. I may get so warm that I wear only my base layer with the wind shell at times. But I may get so cold other times that all the layers go on.Oct 2, 2017 at 10:39 pm #3494487
That 3 layers is my proposed “On the move” clothing and my query about the size of the LW wind barrier that should go with it
I have 2 possible systems there or I can mix and match but I want to keep it as simple as possible.
I posted my lists here a while ago
My real concern tho is how much insulation I need in my static layer/layers, my fears about freezing to death may make me bring more than is necessary
My mate is an old fashioned Hot tent camper and is insisting on my wearing wool as much as possible when I’m with him on the hot tent camp and I’ll do as he instructs there but I also want a kit that is as light as possible for the other trips.
I am making a massive shell parka in Ventile or Japara for the hot tenting trip as well as woollen warm parkas for the “traditional” kit, but I have the surplus L7 overparka and would be able to add it to my list easily. Leaving out the big mother overparka and relying on a medium weight down garment is my “minimalism” concern,
Dena so far nobody can advise if the L7 overparka would also work as the windproof shell
I am good to -25C, experience at these temperatures and no problems with my LW kit down to that, adding an UL down vest would only add 200 grams; it really is that next level that I need help with.
Plenty of time for planning and gear accumulation; trip is still over a year away
Oct 5, 2017 at 10:49 pm #3495079
- This reply was modified 1 year, 2 months ago by Edward John M. Reason: Spelling mistake
Stephen MBPL Member
@stephen-mLocale: Way up North
I used to go lightweight on -20f trips and cut it too close once too many so added a few pounds back on to my winter base weight.Oct 6, 2017 at 10:01 pm #3495213
Stephen this is exactly why I asked the question.
It is possible that one or two of the garments for the Hot-Tent trip would also be good for the LW trip but I’ve always thought the systems were not really compatibleOct 6, 2017 at 11:04 pm #3495220
David ThomasBPL Member
@davidinkenaiLocale: North Woods. Far North.
“My suggestion would be to take a pulk”
Pulk Camping 101:
Oct 7, 2017 at 12:19 am #3495224
- practice with one first. Duh.
- use rigid poles – not rope to pull the sled – otherwise it will overrun you on downhills.
- many people find crossing those rigid poles works better.
- apply Nordic ski glide wax to the entire bottom of your sled. Really. Do this.
- it may seem like weight doesn’t matter if it’s in the sled, but it does.
Did I not mention that I am an accomplished “Pulker” I use one here every winter. Loads up to 135 kilos into my base camp for the ski season, hauling 135 kilos I was making less than a kilometre an hour using snowshoes with big crampons. For use with skis I would like to get the total load down to about 30 kilos and less if possible.
If I was to haul 45 kilos I could just wear and use my hot tenting traditional kit I think
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