Tips for staying warm at night? - ClubTread Community

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post #1 of (permalink) Old 06-08-2017, 03:33 PM Thread Starter
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Default Tips for staying warm at night?

Hi everyone,

I tend to sleep really!!!! cold. I am looking for things I can do/change to make it a more comfortable night's sleep when camping at higher elevations. (Cathedral Provincial Park, base @ 2000M).

Sleeping bag: Brand new (not yet tested) Marmot Nanowave 25.
EN comfort rating depends on what site you look at: backcountry.com listed at 28.1f (-2.2C) but atmosphere lists it at 38.1f (+3.4C)


Sleeping pad: Big Agnes Air Core Insulated
R Value: 4.1

I will be wearing base layer pants/top/fleece hat as well.

Would this setup would be sufficient to keep me warm, or what else can I do to improve it?
Sleeping bag liner? Suggest exchanging the bag for a warmer one? Not really sure.

“Real adventure is defined best as a journey from which you may not come back alive, and certainly not as the same person.” - Yvon Chouinard

Last edited by pdomansky; 06-08-2017 at 03:39 PM.
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 06-08-2017, 04:54 PM
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try to eat right before you go to bed; your body needs to generate heat during the night to keep you warm. If you wake up mid-night have a handful of trail mix etc. to keep the furnace going.

Also boil some water and put it in a water bottle and use to keep your core warm. It's worth it to put a bag around it in case of a slight leak.

Warmth is very subjective, that setup may be to hot for one person and freezing for another.

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post #3 of (permalink) Old 06-08-2017, 11:08 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by penguinabc123 View Post
try to eat right before you go to bed; your body needs to generate heat during the night to keep you warm. If you wake up mid-night have a handful of trail mix etc. to keep the furnace going.

Also boil some water and put it in a water bottle and use to keep your core warm. It's worth it to put a bag around it in case of a slight leak.

Warmth is very subjective, that setup may be to hot for one person and freezing for another.
Good suggestions. I didn't think to eat before bedtime, that makes sense. I read about the nalgene water trick, but how well does it really work? Will it keep you warm all night or just for an hour before you fall asleep?

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post #4 of (permalink) Old 06-08-2017, 11:46 PM
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Liners don't work well. Overbags work well. Or drape your puffy jacket over top of your bag like a quilt.

In addition to a water bottle, a hot rock from the fire stays warm for hours. Don't use one that's too hot or you might melt something. Wrap it in a towel (keeps soot out of your bag too)
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 06-08-2017, 11:47 PM
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Seriously though, if you sleep cold, take a warmer sleeping bag instead of one that's marginal for expected conditions. Then you need less other stuff.
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 12:06 AM Thread Starter
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Noted...thanks Dru. I've gone through a few bags over the past few years, but haven't found one that I have really liked. The reviews of the Marmot got pretty decent reviews which say it's a good 3 season bag, and it packs down really well (bit bigger than a nalgene) and is relatively light, 2lb 14oz - which is surprising for a synthetic bag. I opted for synthetic over down because of how damp our climate is.

I am certainly open to suggestion/recommendations to exchange it, campsaver.com has awesome (lifetime) return policy, which I have done for a couple of pieces of gear that didn't work out. My ideal bag would be less than 3 lbs, and have an EN comfort (not extreme) rating of around 15-20F or around -10c. Any recommendations would be appreciated!

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post #7 of (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 01:07 AM
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Number one is to have enough fuel in you. Eat and drink enough. I find high carb meals don't keep me warm, buts it up to you to experiment with what foods keep you warm. Second most important, don't get cold before you go to bed. Don't start out cold and thinking you'll warm up once in your bag, hat and gloves, down jacket around camp. Then next would be ground insulation, have a good sleeping pad, the cold ground can suck all the heat out of your bag. The warmth of you bag is one of the last things I'd consider important, but definitely if your sleeping cold, get a thicker bag.

I've slept in -35 on an ice climbing trip to the Rockies and was warm all night. But I slept in my clothes, with two sleeping bags and double sleeping pads. Whatever it takes for the conditions.

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post #8 of (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 01:23 AM
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I highly recommend a Nalgene water bottle full of hot water inside your sleeping bag - it adds no extra weight since you're likely carrying it anyway. It will last for about 3-4 hours which will be plenty to get you to sleep.
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 01:54 AM
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While temp ratings on bags vary between manufacturers and even between bags, I'll pick down over synthetic anytime. Switching from a -7 synthetic (Marmot) to a -7 Down (MEC) made a noticable warmth difference, never mind weight and compactness. And most blogs I read recommend down even in damp climates, as a wet bag is a wet bag no matter the insulation and good habits will generally keep any bag dry.

I have slept in Down many times on the west coast of Vancouver Island, in the mist zone where campfires are allowed even during most fire bans because the air is so moist.

Also take a good look at your ground insulation, as even synthetic bags don't work as well underneath you when compressed.
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 02:25 AM
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For eating before bed, have something with a lot of fat for a long slow burn.
Keep sleeping clothes for nothing else but sleeping.
Just before bed boil a litre of water and wrap a bandana around it. My wife's 1 litre Nalgene is warm enough for a face wash in the morning.
Use a buff or a shemagh for an adjustable head cover while sleeping.

and if you're ready for it... a pee bottle.
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post #11 of (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 10:20 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lythe View Post
While temp ratings on bags vary between manufacturers and even between bags, I'll pick down over synthetic anytime. Switching from a -7 synthetic (Marmot) to a -7 Down (MEC) made a noticable warmth difference, never mind weight and compactness. And most blogs I read recommend down even in damp climates, as a wet bag is a wet bag no matter the insulation and good habits will generally keep any bag dry.

I have slept in Down many times on the west coast of Vancouver Island, in the mist zone where campfires are allowed even during most fire bans because the air is so moist.

Also take a good look at your ground insulation, as even synthetic bags don't work as well underneath you when compressed.
I guess down has changed quite a bit over the years, I didn't consider or really look into a down bag just simply due to where we live and the moisture level, but I see a lot of the new bags where the feathers are treated against moisture which I assume is something new in the last couple years.

I spent most of last evening looking researching new down bags and will be sending back the Marmot and going with a down bag...the best bang for the buck I found was the Klymit KSB 20 bag, which has a better EN rating of -6.6c, and user reviews seem to be positive for those that sleep really cold. I think it will be a good match with my insulated sleeping pad.
It also comes in a great price point of 135 USD on campsaver...

EDIT: I actually found a coupon code for 10% off and worked out to be $121 USD. Bought it.

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Last edited by pdomansky; 06-09-2017 at 10:28 AM.
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post #12 of (permalink) Old 06-09-2017, 11:25 AM Thread Starter
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I just posted the bag up for sale if anyone is interested in picking it up and saving a bunch of money. Save me the hassle of driving back to the states to ship it back for a refund.

“Real adventure is defined best as a journey from which you may not come back alive, and certainly not as the same person.” - Yvon Chouinard
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post #13 of (permalink) Old 06-24-2017, 12:46 PM
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We're hot water in Nalgene folk, been doing this for over 30 years and without fail or leaks...stick the bottle between your legs/groin to warm the blood via the femral artery..
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post #14 of (permalink) Old 09-29-2017, 10:34 AM
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I have a good sleeping bag and a heavy blanket that I put over the sleeping bag when go somewhere for camping and hiking. I also have another smaller blanket that I cover the top of my head (I'm kind of bald) and my shoulders leaving only my nose uncovered. I can manage down to about 32 F but if it gets too cold I have to start the truck. Anything that uses the battery will run it down and that can be an unhappy experience.

Last edited by karaRobert; 10-08-2017 at 10:50 AM.
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post #15 of (permalink) Old 10-03-2017, 02:19 PM
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Best advice I ever heard on the subject: Don't go to bed cold. Do some shadow boxing, push on some trees, jumping jacks, push-ups, whatever beforehand..

But if you crawl into a cold tent and sleeping bag with a low core temp to begin with the battle is lost before it ever began..

And I unashamedly use a pee bottle..
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