It takes a certain type of person to pack up their gear and head into the wilderness for a night or two of winter camping. While you’ll be avoiding the bugs and tourists that accompany the summer season, you’re also going to be dealing with the freezing temperatures and challenging conditions that winter brings. So before you embark on your great winter camping adventure, you’ll want to make sure you have the gear you need to keep you warm, dry, and safe.
Mountain Hardwear Trango 4 Tent
Our favorite review of the Mountain Hardwear Trango 4 Tent reads “Take it up the mountain, take it in the snow… hell, take it in space. This tent might outlast you.” This is a durable, comfortable, and easy-to-assemble choice for winter adventurers. It sleeps up to 4 people and will stay dry even in the harshest of conditions with fully taped perimeter seams and a bathtub-style nylon floor that provides the best possible weather protection to help keep you and your gear dry.
Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XTherm Sleeping Pad
Put some space between yourself and the cold, hard ground with the insulated Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XTherm Sleeping Pad. The ThermaCapture layers trap air and reflect heat to keep you comfortable – in fact, the Xtherm has the highest R-value to weight ratio in the world, meaning that you won’t find a warmer sleeping pad at this weight anywhere. With its mummy shape that shaves off ounces, you’re adding less than a pound to your pack weight. Plus Therm-a-rest offers a lifetime warranty on all their products, so you can sleep soundly (no pun intended) knowing that if anything happens to your sleeping pad, you’ll be covered.
Marmot Sawtooth 15 Sleeping Bag
After a day of adventuring, you want to be sure that the sleeping bag you’re getting into will keep you warm, dry, and comfortable so you can rest up for another day on the trail. With the Marmot Sawtooth 15 Sleeping Bag you get just the right blend of warmth and water resistance, plus a Nautilus multi-baffle hood that covers your head. An anatomic wraparound footbox increases insulation and includes a pocket where you can add a heat packet for extra warmth. A fold-down secondary zipper provides some ventilation if you get too warm.
Fjallraven Expedition Down Jacket
Swedish brand Fjallraven has updated their iconic Expedition Down Jacket to make it even better equipped to handle the coldest days of winter in style. This hardwearing puffer is padded with high-quality, ethically produced down distributed in two offset layers that eliminate heat loss and it’s reinforced at the shoulders to prevent moisture from seeping in. An adjustable hem and waist help to seal in body heat while the nylon shell is water resistant to help keep you dry in heavy snowfall.
Smartwool Men’s Base Layer Top
Base layers play a big role in wicking moisture away from the skin and regulating body temperature, so you don’t want to overlook this essential piece of winter camping gear. Made from 100% Merino Wool, this base layer top from Smartwool is designed with an interlock knit for enhanced comfort, breathability, thermoregulation, and odor resistance. The flatlock seam construction is designed to minimize chafing, so it’s perfect to wear under your other layers.
Petzl Actik Core Headlamp
Don’t get left in the dark while you’re out on the trail. A powerful headlamp is one piece of camping gear that you should never leave home without, regardless of the season. The rechargeable, multi-beam Petzl Actik Core offers 450 lumens of power with several brightness levels. Equipped with a USB-rechargeable battery, it boasts an impressive battery life of up to 130 hours on low. And if you find yourself out of juice and without a USB port nearby, you can swap out the rechargeable battery for AAA batteries without the need for an adapter.
Black Diamond Guide Gloves
You won’t be much use on the trail or at the campsite if your hands are frozen solid.* But you also won’t be much use if the gloves you’re wearing are so bulky that you can’t pick anything up. Luckily the Black Diamond Guide Gloves offer the optimal balance of dexterity and durability to keep your hands warm while you’re hiking, skiing, or setting up camp. Removable wool liners are backed with PrimaLoft® One insulation and have waterproof, breathable Gore-Tex XCR® inserts to keep hands dry in the wettest of conditions.
*All jokes aside, frostbite and hypothermia are serious concerns while winter camping. Be careful out there.