How To Stay Warm While Camping




how to stay warm while camping

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Tents, bonfires, marshmallows, sticks, and friends scream only one thing, camping!!. Camping may be fun but in chilly weather, that’s a whole different story. How then can you stay warm while camping? You know the cliché that says “ if you can’t stand the heat get out of the kitchen”, well the same thing applies to cold and camping.

I went camping with my friends in the middle of winter. We were able to gather some sticks to start a campfire. We sat around it to stay warm. Everything was going great until we had to retire to bed. After spending two hours in bed, I was ready to light a campfire inside my tent!

Now, some people might say that I am exaggerating but I felt like I was freezing. When morning came, I told my friends I couldn’t continue with them. They were also underprepared so they had also experienced the raging cold. We quit our three days camp on the first night because we couldn’t handle the cold, with just our blankets.



After carrying out some research, I went back the next year, with the same set of friends. We were well equipped so we stayed a week. I am going to share my tips on how to stay warm while camping in a tent. This could also come in handy for those who camp in their cars.

Tips On How To Stay Warm While Camping

If you’re worried about how to stay warm while camping, fret not. There are plenty of ways to keep warm without having a fire going all night long or wearing bulky clothes that will make you too hot in the summer.

Use Lots Of Layers While Coordinating Your Clothes

Most people would probably prefer to put on thick pajamas paired off with a nice big woolen or cotton sweater. This might keep out the cold for a bit but it can’t last all through the night. With this, you could get sweaty which would end up making you feel cold and uncomfortable.

For this reason, layers are the best option for sleeping and daily activities. When sweating starts, the external layer can be removed. The middle and base layers still act as adequate protection against the cold.

For the base or first layer, pick only lightweight materials. Whatever you do, avoid cotton fabrics. The middle layer should mostly be light too. Don’t let your clothes be too thick to avoid discomfort while using the sleeping bag.

Choose A Good Campsite

You could save yourself a whole lot of stress with the right campsite. It doesn’t take away the cold completely but it definitely cuts down on the amount of work to be done. Study and research on your proposed campsite to get a good understanding of the weather works around there.


Choose A Good Campsite


For the sole reason that air rises when it is warm and sinks when it is cold, you might need to pick a mid elevated plain. Stay out of the valley to avoid the cold and don’t go to the mountain top because it could get too windy. To add the final notch, you could also keep your tent in a slightly bent position.

Pay Attention To Your Head And Feet

At first, this might seem demure in comparison to the rest of your body but trust me, they aren’t. No matter how protected your body is, if your feet and head are sticking out of your sleeping bag, you are bound to have an uncomfortable night. You could wear soft, thick socks, probably wool, as a safety measure for your feet.

You could even heat pads to your socks. For your head, you could use a nice, cute, beanie, or an insulated cap. Better yet, get a sleeping bag that has a hoodie for the face. Use it to cover your entire body with the exclusion of your mouth and nose.

Eat Right To Feel Right.

Good nutrition is not only a good health measure but doubles as a body heating fuel. You might be wondering how heat relates to food. As mammals, we are capable of producing heat for our bodies when we eat. So a hearty dinner is a great way of stimulating body heat.

Take snacks and foods containing lots of fat and carbohydrate. Peanut, peanut butter, and spicy foods are great helpers. Make sure to start hydrated. That is, drink enough water especially while hot. Avoid taking coffee.

Invest In Insulated Sleeping Pads.

If you want to get a sleeping bag, add an insulated pad to it. A warm, dry sleeping bag is almost no different from sleeping on the cold hard floor. If you want to use something, use it right. Insulated pads have the ability to resist conduction which is the major source of heat, more than regular mattresses. Put the pad on top of the mattress in your sleeping bag, then go to bed.


Reduce Your Living Space

This might seem a bit absurd but you don’t need all that space in your tent. The bigger the vacuum, the bigger the space for the cool air to fill. If you can, reduce the size of your tent when setting it up. Let it just be enough to contain you, your sleeping bag, your backpack, and all of your extra gears. You could also decide to share a tent with your friends. The proximity of your bodies also causes heat to be generated.

Stay Warm As Toast With Hot Water Bottles

This would probably be the most unconventional idea we have presented so far but it works. Heat water with your portable camping stove to store in your hot water bottles [1]. Put the filled hot water bottles beside different parts of your sleeping bag. This will keep you warm as toast till morning. Use metal bottles, preferably,100,% stainless steel bottles to avoid the water getting contaminated.

The Extra Blanket Power

Very common but very effective. Just like layers, you can add extra blankets to your sleeping plan if you still feel cold. It is easy to remove when discomfort occurs.

Now that we have seen various ways to stay warm in our camping tents during winter, what are we waiting for? Happy campers let’s go camping.


  1. Back Packing Light [Link]

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