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Category: Winter Expeditions

Applying Axe Skills In Winter

Applying Axe Skills In Winter

In previous articles, I have covered some core axe skills, along with safety considerations, which will serve you well year-round. When we look at winter specifically, however, there are some added considerations…

PK Podcast 026: Kevin Callan On The Joys Of Winter Camping

PK Podcast 026: Kevin Callan On The Joys Of Winter Camping

Kevin Callan is well known as a paddler and author of many canoe-route guidebooks for his native province of Ontario, Canada. He’s also known as the Happy Camper, and he certainly has always been happy when I’ve camped or chatted with him. Kevin has been a guest on my podcast before and today I’m delighted to welcome him back again to talk about another shared passion of ours – winter camping….

Snow Shelters: Why We Don’t Build Igloos In The Forest

Snow Shelters: Why We Don’t Build Igloos In The Forest

Traditionally igloos were tundra shelters, with other snow shelters and snowhouses involving mounding up snow being favoured in the forest. But modern Ice Box devices blur this boundary. So, I thought I would investigate building an igloo-type shelter in the boreal forest…

Winter Bivvying – How To Stay Warm In A World Of Cold

Winter Bivvying – How To Stay Warm In A World Of Cold

Winter means different things to different people. Moreover, the degree of winter conditions as you range from the tropics to higher latitudes varies immensely. There are, of course, nuances and subtleties to each winter bivvy situation. A knowledge of some widely-applicable winter bivvy “rules” is, however, a good starting place. Combine this with a good understanding of the fundamentals of how heat is lost to a cold environment plus how these apply specifically to the use of a bivvy, sleeping bag and sleeping mat combination, and you will significantly enhance your winter bivvy experiences. Understanding what you need to do, how to do it and having some experience under your belt, will stand you in good stead to weather difficult situations and, in extremis, may just save your life…

The Best Clothing For Digging Out Snow Shelters

The Best Clothing For Digging Out Snow Shelters

Snow shelters take different forms but have many commonalities. Digging them out can be warm work as well as creating problems with moisture in your clothing. I have found over the years, utilising some well chosen items of clothing for digging snow shelters can make all the difference between being damp and chilly afterwards or being warm and comfortable…

Winter Woodland Wildcamping: 21 Tips & Tricks

Winter Woodland Wildcamping: 21 Tips & Tricks

Winter woodland wildcamping takes a little more planning, organisation and efficiency than in the easier summer months but sleeping out in a winter bivvy in the temperate zones is well within the capabilities of most spring, summer and autumn campers. I’ve put together 21 tips for those who would like to try…

As Thick As A Capercaillie: How To Build A Long Log Fire

As Thick As A Capercaillie: How To Build A Long Log Fire

I have in the past written about the value of a long-log fire in the context of articles detailing the building of a lean-to shelter and later, the renovation of a previously used shelter. This has prompted readers to ask questions about the long-log fire itself, how it should be built, how it should be established. First Things First Get the right firewood. When I worked with Lars Fält he used to say there was an old saying that, “logs…

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How To Generate Water In The Frozen North

How To Generate Water In The Frozen North

Because they’re frozen, extreme cold environments are practically deserts. In this video and the associated article I share a couple of really effective methods of generating water in a frozen environment. Unless you have a specialist tool to cut through ice, getting at the water underneath the ice is extremely difficult. There is plenty of water present though, in the form of snow and the key to accessing it is…