Sleeping outdoors is certainly a different experience, but that doesn’t mean it’s always pleasant. If it is sometimes difficult to fall asleep in the comfort of our bed, imagine being outdoors. The ideal is to go out prepared so as not to deprive ourselves of new experiences and to enjoy them as much as possible.
- A four-season tent, prepared for low temperatures, can make all the difference.
- Sleeping bag: the American standard unifies the criteria for temperature ranges and how to measure them.
- It is important the clothes we wear for camping in cold weather, from thermal underwear to the last layers of protection (mountain layering system).
Probably the first time is the most complicated because we do not know what we are facing. Maybe in some episode of your favorite series, the characters are camping and you may have an idea of what you will find; but nothing compares to the reality.
Even if you are one of those people who fall asleep easily, no matter where you are surprised, it is important to follow some suggestions when the plan is to go camping.
You have to sleep well to perform during a day of activity in the mountains.
Due to the economic savings they represent, camping environments are quite used; in addition to the monetary advantage over a hotel, it allows the camper to be in direct contact with nature.
But when we spend several days in a tent and use a sleeping bag, without being used to it, soon the body will send signals of rejection, demanding again the usual comfort.
Remember that the night is for rest and if instead of replenishing your energy, you stay up late, get cold and do not sleep, it will be difficult to perform in a day of physical activity outdoors.
Alternatives for staying warm in a tent
Pay attention to the following tips to sleep pleasantly when camping and make the most of this experience:
- Take a suitable sleeping bag.
If we have a bag that does not protect us enough, a sleepless night is guaranteed. When you go to buy a sleeping bag, don’t just look at the model; in addition to quality and comfort, evaluate the temperature it will offer so that you don’t freeze in the early morning.
It would be perfect to have a sleeping bag that provides comfort between 10 and 15 degrees higher than the temperatures you will be exposed to while camping.
- Urinate before going to bed.
When we empty our bladder, the body burns less energy to keep us warm; that is why it is good to urinate before going to bed. Another point in favor is that if we go before, we will not have to get up in the early morning and, therefore, we will not interrupt our sleep.
- Cushion your mat more.
Simply place an extra piece of equipment under the pad, so that there is more cushioning between you and the ground. As the idea is to go prepared, but not excessively loaded, inflatable or foam mats that offer great insulation would be very useful, we can find a great variety in the market.
- A hot water bottle.
It helps to keep the bag warm for a longer period of time, in spite of the coldness of the tent. It serves a plastic bottle, of those that bring water, juice, or soda. Place it between your legs, touching the femoral artery, and at a temperature that your body can tolerate. This translates into safe rest.
If we do not want to place a bottle of water between our legs, because it is uncomfortable, there is also the alternative of pouring boiling water in a plastic bottle, close it and put it at the bottom of the bag, perhaps covered with a cloth, to keep the area warm and not feel cold.
- Protect your bag from humidity.
Keep it dry. If we have been hiking in the rain, think about your bag and protect it from getting wet.
If at midnight the cold wakes you up, eat a chocolate bar to activate your metabolism.
- Don’t sleep in wet clothes.
Whether it is water or sweat, wet clothes must be removed from our bodies. If we want to rest and feel warm during the night, we must sleep in dry clothes.
- Thermal or synthetic clothing.
They are perfect to keep us warm and not subject us to low temperatures that freeze the body. They will help us to sleep warm. Multi-layered clothing is ideal for sleeping in tents and keeping warm. From jackets to pants and socks, they keep us warm for a pleasant rest. Several layers of thin clothing.
- Keep the circulation going.
Although we must protect ourselves from the cold, we must not hinder circulation. Remove from your body any clothing that constricts blood flow and prevents you from sleeping comfortably.
- Branches and leaves also work.
If the issue is that among what we carry we do not have enough material to insulate the bag and that this warms us while we sleep, then take advantage of the goodness of nature and opt for dry leaves and branches. Pile some under the tent, the results are good.
One way to keep the bag warm is to do a round of squats and then lie down; in fact, every time you cool down, the exercise lessens the sensation.
- Fill in gaps.
The less free space left in the bag, the less likely we are to get cold. If the bag is too big, let’s use some clothes to complete it, so that the layers collaborate to give warmth.
- Snow tarp.
If it snows, it is best to place a tarp or other material such as pine branches between the ground and the tent, so that we are insulated and do not feel the cold of the ground.