Just imagine what it would be like to crawl into your sleeping bag, zip it up, and sleep the entire night knowing that your personal cocoon of nylon, polyester and even down is going to shield you from the frigid outside temperatures.
You'd think that just by jumping into a sleeping bag and cinching it around your face that you'd be toasty warm for the whole night. However, many of us have countless memories of waking up in your sleeping bag feeling colder than than the temperature outside. What's up with that?
Did you know that we get cold while camping because of bad habits and not because of faulty or poorly designed equipment? If bad habits continue, even in a –10º sleeping bag, you will still wake up as cold as ever.
Here are 7 Warm Sleeping Tips to help you keep warm while snoozing in a bag:
Shake up your bag.
Get your bag to return to its normal loft after being compressed in its stuff sack all day. Fluff it back to life and make sure all the insulation is redistributed before you hop in.
Wear a hat.
The human head gives off a lot of heat. Retain it all by wearing a beanie to bed. Also, take advantage of your mummy bag’s hood and keep your head covered.
Go to bed warm.
Don’t jump into your sleeping bag if your body is already cold. Get your heart pumping and blood flowing with some basic exercises. Now your body just has to maintain that heat instead of trying to warm itself up.
Wear fresh clothes.
Don’t crawl into your sleeping bag with the clothes you wore during the day. They are dirty, damp, and “tired.” Fresh clothes tend to provide more insulation than dirty ones because their fibers haven't been compressed.
Don’t put your face in your sleeping bag.
Avoid getting the inside of your sleeping bag damp by never covering your face with your sleeping bag. Your breath, although warm, will fill the bag full of unwanted moister. Just cinch up the opening around your face and keep your nose and mouth out.
Go to bed with a water bottle full of hot water.
Before lying down for the night, boil some water and put it in a water bottle. Spend the night snuggling that bottle of warmth.
Eat and drink before going to bed.
Before you hit the sack, put some fuel in your body and make sure you are hydrated. Your body needs to be properly nourished to be able to keep itself warm.
Use the appropriate rated sleeping bag.
Make sure you know a little about the climate of where you are going camping. If it's going to be cold, don't bring your 40º sleeping bag and hope you stay warm. Bring a 20º or 0º bag, it'll make a world of difference.