«SCOUTS-L COLD WEATHER CAMPING & KLONDIKE DERBYS Date: Tue, 31 Oct 1995 21:14:00 MST From: Chris Haggerty, Sierra Vista, Arizona ...»
Greg Gough SM Troop 201, Ozark, MO. I used to be an Owl but I will always be an Eagle!
Date: Wed, 1 Nov 1995 09:20:55 -0500 From: Internet-Go Ahead goahead@EF.COM Subject: keeping warm First of all let me explain my qualifications: When I was in the U.S. Army I went to Arctic Warfare School, This was not to only to teach about combat in the Arctic but to teach Extreme Cold weather survival skills. I have been to Okpik(which was the Maine High Adventure Base Winter Camp) several times and can honestly say that I know a fair amount about cold weather camping. so here goes 1 go to the bathroom before you get into bed 2 make sure you have plenty of insulation below you 1-2 inches 3 leave the back flap of your tent open about 4 inches. this will allow the moisture from your breath to escape out of the tent and not collect on the sides 4 eat something high in calories before you go to bed. Your stomach is your furnace and will generate heat while you sleep.
5 in extreme cold weather you CANNOT rely upon external heat sources for warmth.
They will only warm the side facing the heat source and subsequently cause sweating.
6 layering this is most important while you are active 7 drink water 8 you are better off getting into your sleeping bag in your boxers or naked than putting on sweats.They are just like the name implies they absorb your body moisture and trap it next to your skin making you cold. the best type of under wear for winter camping is Silk. it is a very good insulator 9 DO NOT wear the same clothes to bed that you had on all day this is important for socks also 10 put you clothes for the next day under your head or at the bottom of your bag 11 wear a ski hat to bed REMEMBER 70% of body heat is lost through the top of your head 12 DO NOT breathe into your sleeping bag this may warm it for a short time but the moisture in your breath will be worse later in the night 13 put your propane tanks at the bottom of your sleeping bag or use WHITE FUEL 14 Get the Venture Crew hand book on Winter Camping and read it 15 Obtain the Army Feild Manual on Cold weather Operations. I don't remember the exact title or the FM number but you can find it at the library or on line some where I you have any more Questions you can Call me at 800-242-4686 ext 1913 or ask for Vince Silvia SCOUTS OUT!
Vince Silvia firstname.lastname@example.org Date: Thu, 2 Nov 1995 09:16:11 -0600 From: August Treubig atreubi@ENTERGY.COM Subject: Re: keeping warm One thing that I haven't seen anyone else talk about is powdering your feet with powder to keep them dry. The powder absorbs the moisture.. for a while anyway..
YiS August ______________________________________________________________________________
Date: Wed, 8 Nov 1995 09:36:12 EST From: Peter Farnham pfarnham@ASBMB.FASEB.ORG Subject: Re: surviving cold, a situation
Regarding your hypothetical situation, first, check him out. Make sure he changed his clothing before going to bed--the clothes should be completely dry. Have him put on a wool sweater, socks, etc. Put a stocking cap on his head. Make sure the sleeping bag is dry, and that he's got insulation--extra clothes, thermal pads, etc.--underneath his bag. Check the rating of the bag (of course, you should have done this before leaving the parking lot on the way to the trip). If it's a summer-rated bag, get a blanket or two around him.
I would closely monitor the situation, and if in twenty minutes or so the young man's teeth had not stopped chattering, then I would go to phase two. Get him into the car if available, and turn on the heater.
If you're backpacking and a car isn't reasonably close by, then get a fire going and get some hot soup into him. Keep the kid wrapped up in as many warm clothes as you can find. If necessary, get into the bag with him yourself (of course, wake up your second adult and have him join you by the fire).
In any case, DO NOT go back to bed until you are sure the young man is okay.
I'm taking my boys, including a bunch of new scouts, camping in mid-December to Catoctin Mountain Park, near Thurmont, MD. It gets real cold up there, particularly when the wind gets blowing. We're going to work on cold-weather camping skills for the several troop meetings prior to going, and I will make sure my boys are prepared for the cold. I've been told that the new scouts are usually not a problem--but their parents are, showing up for trips woefully unprepared. With this in mind, I will bring along a whole duffel bag full of wool sweaters and stocking caps, as well as extra blankets. I also plan to send a note home to all the boys ahead of time explaining the dangers of cold and what they should bring with them by way of clothing.
Pete Farnham SM, Troop 113 GW District, NCAC Alexandria, VA email@example.com I also want to thank this list for the many fine suggestions on dealing with the cold on a camping trip. Most of them are pretty common sensical, but it has helped to have them all collected in one place.
Date: Tue, 7 Nov 1995 16:09:01 -0500 From: Jim Holman jrholman@POSTBOX.ACS.OHIO-STATE.EDU Subject: surviving cold, a situation This is a followup to the keeping warm thread.
Let's say you have the following situation. Cold weather, teens. Everyone goes to bed and a couple of hours later, you wake up and find a kid trying to rebuild the fire. He says he is 'freezing to death', he's shivering and his teeth are chattering. You convince him to go back into his sleeping bag to try to get warm. He complains he's still cold, but you tell him just to wait a while and he'll warm back up. You go back to bed. Now, what are the dangers here? If you go off to sleep, and he DOESN'T warm up, is he likely to die from hypothermia? How can you tell the difference between someone who just gets cold and someone in danger without staying up all night yourself? Can a person go to sleep and not realize they are getting so cold they are in a dangerous situation? I'm not concerned about daytime when you can keep an eye on everyone, but nightime concerns me.
Date: Thu, 9 Nov 1995 16:53:09 -0600 From: Marc Solomon msolomon@TEK1.TEKNIQ.COM Subject: Re: physiological question
At 12:26 PM 11/9/95 -0600, golden cliff wrote:
The reason you want to empty your bladder at night is because a full bladder will rob your body of heat. It is similar to the hot water bottle. A water water bottle will give you warmth until it cools, after that it takes heat from you. A full bladder requires you to heat excess fluid in your body. An empty bladder does not.
Empty your bladder before turning in. If you have to go in the middle of the night, go. Don't hold out until morning or you will become cold.
Always a good idea for a number of reasons.
I don't go for the little chamber bottles in the tent. A quick visit outside isn't that bad. I've always found it to be well worth the effort.
I disagree with you here. During my OKPIK training, one instructor went to great lengths to explain how, after taking the steps to leave your tent to urinate, you will not have the body heat left to rewarm your sleeping bag.
First, you open your sleeping bag losing all the warmth you stored in your sleeping bag and much of the warmth you stored within whatever clothes you wore to sleep. You then put on cold clothes, socks, and boots and lose more body heat warming up these articles of clothing. Then you open your tent to get out losing any warmth you had stored within the tent. Then after walking a short distance, you open up the newly warmed clothes to allow you to urinate, losing a bit more body heat in the process. Then you expel a few pints of warm fluid from your body, once more losing a great amount of stored body heat. After finsihing all this, you trudge back to your tent, open it up once more (your tent mate will love you by now ;) ), losing more stored heat from the tent (if any remained from the previous opening), take of the clothes you just warmed up, and get into your now cold sleeping bag.
If the temperature when you started this trek was freezing or below, the chances of your body generating enough heat for the second time in a few hours (remember you had to warm your bag when you first went to sleep) is ridiculously small. After a short time, you will probably realize this, get dressed for a second time and go start a fire.
I cannot tell you the number of times I have been wakened by the noise of one or more Scouters huddled around a fire at three thirty in the morning.
It seems to happen more to the Scouters because after dinner they sit around swilling down coffee until it is time for bed. The Scouts on the other hand might have one or two hot cocoa's in the evening and with their higher (usually) level of activity there body uses the fluid to replace fluid lost during the day.
By the way, this same instructor suggested using two heavy duty gallon zip locks for these emergencies. Fill one. Seal it. Place it in the other.
Seal that one. Place it in your sleeping bag as a hot "water" bottle. With my immense bulk, I doubt the seals would hold if I rolled over. My solution is still stop drinking a few hours before going to sleep and to expel any remaining fluid before retiring.
Yours in Scouting, +--------------------------+-----------------------+ | Marc W. Solomon | Unit Commissioner | | firstname.lastname@example.org | Sycamore District | | email@example.com | Blackhawk Council, IL | +--------------------------+-----------------------+ I use to be a wise old owl... Now I am just old Date: Mon, 13 Nov 1995 13:13:28 -0800 From: Derry Hamilton D.Hamilton@SMS.ED.AC.UK Organization: Edinburgh University Subject: Re: surviving cold, a situation This is a late posting that is sent using a dicey mailer since my normal one is having a mid life crisis and can never remember my email address.
Though it should be rectified soon The scout in question is quite clearly not hypothermic, though he may be potentialy hypothermic. If you look up your first aid manual the cause is low core temoerature (as measured by a thermometer in the mouth or similar). This leads to lagging behind (if walking), mood swings, unpredictability, possibly violent behaviour etc. It is when the shivering response stops that the person becomes hypothermic.
If he is still shivering then some high calorie food is a good idea but if he is truly hypothermic then putting him in a bag will be your best option whilst you are calling the ambulence. True hypothermia _cannot_ be treated on camp an requires medical attention. It is rare for somebody with hypothermia to be able to diagnose it for themselves, one of the symptoms is that you stop caring. Since the scout came to you shivering then he is safe for the moment.
What you should do is check his clothing (Even if he is in a decent bag if the weather is that cold then he should be wearing a jersey, warm P.J.s and bed socks. These must be bone dry. Next his bedding, is the seeping bag OK, is he using it properly, does he have a roll mat or blankets beneath it, once again is it dry? Next check the tent, is it brailed down properly, is the ground sheet covering the sod cloths, is there anything touching the fly sheet?
If these are all correct and if he really is very cold then an idea that works is to get everyone together who is awake and wants from the whole troop, which shouldn't be too many if it is late and put on a dixie of soup that will be drunk. If nessicary have a _quiet_ sing along by a small fire or in a tent, making sure that everyone is well wrapped up whilst singing and drinking. When all is done get everyone to bed end ensure that all the patrols are safely done up then get to bed.
I have it on reliable advice that cold cannot kill you when you are asleep, you wake well up before it happens. As I said above, if the scout really is hypothermic then it is not a situation that can be dealt with in camp. The standard treatment is to mostly immerse (so they can still breath safely ) the victim in water at 40 degrees Celsius ( my sums tell me that this is about 104 degrees Farenheight) until they begin to sweat. At this point the core temperature is in the safe zone, then take them out rapidly, dry them and put them in a warm bed. The British mountain rescue use a synthetic bag with fibres similar to the foil in a space blanket when they are uplifting a hypothermia victim and this is often warm enough to reverse hypothermia on its own (with a healthy person in it too) in case they have to weather out a storm.
We had a thread about first aid training a few days ago. This serves to reiterate the necesity for good wild country first aid ability.
YiS Derry Hamilton Junior leader 1st North Berwick Scotland Date: Mon, 13 Nov 1995 11:38:31 -0500 From: Robert Sheneman rsheneman@PPPL.GOV Subject: Staying Warm &VB Clothing-Longish Following the thread of cold weather clothing and staying warm, Paul Brown and I have been conversing off-list about this topic. He was particularly interested in vapor-barrier type clothing and my suggestion that he experiment with different ideas before using them on a trip. At Paul's suggestion, I'll share my $0.02 with the list. I've added some background info. [in brackets] to help folks follow the conversation. This is by no means the definitive word on vapor barrier clothing, keeping warm, etc.
I'd certainly like to hear what others have to say.
******************* Extracted Text ***************** I'm sure you've got a pretty good handle on winter camping, but my experience comes from a number of years with backcountry skiing, ski mountaineering, snow&ice climbing and other cold weather activities (my hands and feet are still a little sensitive after a brush with frostbite).
I think what you're trying to achieve with plastic bags is the vapor barrier effect. This is where a thin vapor-proof layer is placed near the skin and insulative clothing is worn on top. The theory is that a) much water and heat is lost through evaporation, and b)by reducing the evaporation you reduce the heat loss. It works very very well in really cold situations. The key, in my experience is to get the vapor barrier close to the skin. I've used a thin polyolefin or polypropylene sock inside the vapor barrier and then wear heavy wool socks outside. Be careful of wrinkles in the bag as this can cause blisters. I'd experiment a few times when out for the day before banking on anything too much for a winter camping trip, and _always_ carry spare dry socks.