How To Enjoy A Cold Weather Camping Trip

Even though we have more winter weather ahead of us,  we can still think about a camping trip in early Spring.  Although the calendar may say “spring”, you can be sure that there will be some pretty cold nights when you are sleeping outside.  Here’s how to prepare for a great cold weather camping experience at the tail end of Winter.


  • Plan to layer your clothing. The bottom layer should be a type of synthetic material that will wick moisture away from your body and keep you warm.
  • Your second layer should provide insulation for your upper body. Wool is a good choice because it retains its insulating properties even when wet.
  • The outer layer should be some type of windbreaker that provides protection from rain and snow.
  • Don’t forget warm socks to keep your feet cozy and dry. Two pairs of socks are better than one. The first pair should be made of material like Gore-Tex or polypropylene to draw moisture from your feet. The second pair should be wool or even down. I have a pair of possum down socks which are wonderful. Who knew possums had down?
  • Waterproof hiking boots are a must.
  • A warm hat and gloves complete the “must have” list of clothing you want to have.


  • If you are tent camping, make sure your tent is in good shape. Seal any seams that may have leaked the last time you camped. Be sure all the flaps fasten securely and that all the zippers close completely. An extra tarp placed under the tent will help to keep the cold from the ground from seeping up into the floor of your tent.
  • Check to see if your tent is rated for the degree of coldness that you could experience. If it is really cold, you will need a 4 season tent; if not, a 3 season tent will do. The Weathermaster, which is a Coleman large family tent , is an excellent 3 season tent.
  • Check the cold rating on your sleeping bag. Is it suitable for the temperature you will be experiencing? The temperature can really drop at night.
  • A sleeping pad is really necessary for winter camping. It can be foam or inflatable. You don’t want to be without one. Bag liners are another item you might want to purchase. They will add a few extra degrees of warmth to your bag.


  • Hot, high calorie, high energy foods are what you will need on a cold weather camping trip.
  • Provide plenty of hot drinks to warm you up. But don’t forget to drink plenty of water when you are hiking. You can become dehydrated in winter just as well as in summer.
  • Cook hearty breakfasts and dinners. Think oatmeal, pancakes, stews, chilli or filling casseroles.
  • It’s a good idea to have a dependable grill for cooking. You can get mighty cold waiting for a camp fire to get hot enough to cook a meal. One grill that fits the bill is the Road Trip grill. It’s very versatile and can cook multiple things at one time.

There’s no reason why you can’t enjoy a cold weather camping trip if you prepare properly. Just use these guidelines to get your supplies together and you will have a great time. Happy Camping!

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