Winter is coming, and this means it’s time to break out the camp stove, snowshoes, and winter camping gear! Sure you could always head to the caribbean or take a ski vacation, but there’s something special about spending time in the natural world. Camping in the winter is not always easy or comfortable — but it can be an unforgettable experience.
So you’ve decided to spend your winter camping and hiking in the backcountry. Awesome! But before you go, here are a few tips and tricks that will make your trip more enjoyable. These ideas come from all sorts of sources, so I hope it’ll be useful for more than just my readers!
It’s winter time, and you’re still looking for some insights on winter bushcraft camping?
Explore these six great ideas to get your gears turning!
Winter Bushcraft Camping Ideas
The cold season is coming, and we all want to spend more time in the outdoors. The winter has its own charm, with snow, ice and frozen lakes, but it also presents an array of challenges for us campers. In order to enjoy this season to the fullest, we need to equip ourselves with some skills.
Luckily, none of these skills are really difficult to master.
And if you’re looking for some inspiration for your next winter camping trip, let’s take a look at six winter bushcraft camping ideas that can help you make the most of your experience.
1. Build a Portable Camp Fire
One of the quickest and easiest ways to stay warm during an extended period of cold weather is to build a camp fire. It’s important that you learn how to build one properly, however.
If you’ve got the proper materials then you can easily construct a portable camp fire with nothing more than some matches, an empty tin can, and a small block of wood. To make sure that your camp fire is going to work to its fullest potential you’ll want to build it in such a way that it can be easily moved. This means that it should be built on a level surface, not over any rocks or other obstacles.
After you’ve set up your campfire and it’s making good progress then it’s time to add some fuel to the fire. You can do this by simply cutting a small piece of wood, filling your tin can with bits of newspaper and sticks, and lighting it up with matches. The previously mentioned snares are a perfect option for adding more fuel to your campfire, as you will be able to gather plenty of dead leaves that have fallen from trees all throughout the winter season.
2. Plant That Fire
Make sure you’re well prepared for any type of weather conditions. Obviously if it’s raining and cold outside, take special care of the fire while it’s burning and make sure it will withstand the inevitable freezing temperatures.
You don’t want to risk starting a fire with wet kindling and dry tinder. It won’t only get you into more trouble but will also ruin your whole evening. A dry kindling is usually made of dried grasses and small twigs which have been flattened out and kept in a bowl.
When you start a fire with such kindling, it is called a tinder nest.
3. Build a Shelter
If you do decide to brave the cold and go for a winter camping trip, make sure to get enough experience and knowledge about available resources in advance. How will you build your shelter?
What kind of materials and tools will you use? If it’s snowing, how will you get material for insulation?
If you’re not prepared enough, building a shelter can become an extremely difficult task. If you already know what materials you will use to build your shelter, then it will be easier to get the job done.
If you are struggling with the task of building a shelter, try to get some help. If you cannot find anyone who is willing to help and take a rest, then look for some suitable materials nearby and start working on your shelter: make a bed using branches, trees or snow; chip off the bark from large branches and stick them together; carve out small blocks of wood for walls or floors.
You can also build a tent using nylon or thick plastic sheeting. If you want to make it as dry and warm as possible, then you need to consider every aspect of the building process. For example, if you are going to use a tarp as tent material, then try to place it inside the branches of trees or a rock overhang. This creates an extra layer that helps protect your tent from snow and rain.
4. Cook Something Delicious
The cold season is a good time for cooking delicious meals outdoors. You can prepare some tasty meals using the ingredients you’ve gathered on your expedition or hunting trip. The heat of your campfire will help you cook your food faster and preserve its flavor better.
There are lots of possible meals that you can cook over an open flame. The tastiest meals are usually cooked over an open fire using a campfire survival cooking kit. Just be careful not to burn yourself when working near the fire, and have some patience while waiting for the meal to cook.
5. Relax with a Hot Drink
The cold season is a good time to sit around a campfire and enjoy a hot drink. It can be coffee, tea, hot chocolate or any other beverage that you prefer. If you want to get out of the cold, then try to gather some pine cones and sticks for additional heat.
You can get additional warmth from your body heat if you wear several layers of clothes. Also try to stay close to the fire in order to warm up your hands and feet.
6. Keep Warm
If you’re going on a winter camping trip, you need to consider the task of keeping yourself warm. How will you keep yourself warm? What are the different types of heaters and keep warm methods that can help you?
To start with, you need to choose heat sources. For example, if you have a fire in your fire pit, then try to place some insulation on top of it. If it’s inside your tent, then try to cover the floor with leaves or pine needles.
You can also use heat sources in the form of stones, rocks, boughs of burning wood, hardwood or pine logs.
The winter season has some excellent opportunities for outdoor activities and sports. One of those activities is ice fishing, which is a popular sport in the cold climate of Canada and the upper US states. Ice fishing presents an exciting opportunity to get outdoors, enjoy the scenery and take your time to fish in peace.
There are also lots of other things you can do to relax while camping in the winter. One of them is reading a good book. You can make a nice fire and light your torch if you want to read in the darkest night.
In the end, the key to keeping warm depends on your own experience and knowledge of different methods. Look for some insulating materials and start working on a cozy refuge for your evening.
Good luck with your next winter camping trip!