Posted by The Editorial Desk / Monday, December 13th, 2010
Most Virginia hikers plan camping trips for temperate seasons; average temperatures tend to make for a less imposing, more enjoyable trip. On the other hand, some hikers simply don’t have the gear to organize a winter trek. Here are the items said adventure-seekers would need to enjoy the winter wilderness.
1. Men’s and Women’s Chilkats
The gear hikers rely on most is their footwear. These insulated boots keep feet warm in temperatures as low as -25 degrees Fahrenheit, and provide good grip on icy or wet surfaces. / The North Face, Tysons Corner Center, 1961 Chain Bridge Road, McLean; thenorthface.com; 703-917-0111; $90
2. Tundra Sleeping Bag
The importance of a warm sleeping bag in cold temperatures cannot be overestimated. This bag will keep its occupant warm in temperatures as low as 20 degrees Fahrenheit. / The North Face, Tysons Corner Center, 1961 Chain Bridge Road, McLean; thenorthface.com; 703-917-0111; $249-$259
3. MSR WhisperLite Internationale
This stove is light and works well in cold temperatures, two characteristics not all camp stoves share. The stove will perform at temperatures as low as -10 degrees Fahrenheit. / Hudson Trail Outfitters, 9488 Fairfax Blvd., Fairfax; hudsontrail.com; 703-591-2950; $89.50
4. Smartwool Neck Gaiter
Cold-weather hikers often overlook neck gear. This gaiter is much warmer and far less unruly than a scarf. / Eastern Mountain Sports, 2800 Clarendon Blvd., The Market Common, Suite R550, Arlington; ems.com; 703- 248-8310; $25
5. Seirus Combo Clava
The Combo Clava can be worn as a balaclava or be unraveled into a hat with face mask. The hat is ideal for hikers facing cutting wind and snow. / Eastern Mountain Sports, 2800 Clarendon Blvd.., The Market Common, Suite R550, Arlington; ems.com; 703-248-8310; $26.
6. Trail Mix
Trail mix, a snack comprised of non-perishables such as raw nuts, seeds and dried fruits, is ideal for winter campers since it won’t freeze like oranges or apples might. / Ingredients available at local health food stores; prices vary
7. Men’s and Women’s Arc’teryx Phase SV Crew LS
This thermal top is designed for cold weather and made of a moisture-wicking material that keeps its user dry. / Hudson Trail Outfitters, 9488 Fairfax Blvd., Fairfax; hudsontrail.com; 703-591-2950; $69.95
8. Extreme Cold Weather Gloves
Military surplus stores can often provide the best cold-weather gear. These gloves are soft, durable and, most importantly, fleece-lined. / Coleman’s Military Surplus; store.colemans.com; 1-888-4SURPLUS; $19.95
9. Sealskinz Bootliners
If, for whatever reason, waterproof boots are not taken on one’s camping trip, these socks will serve to line non-waterproof shoes and keep feet warm and dry. / Coleman’s Military Surplus; store.colemans.com; 1-888-4SURPLUS; $14.95
10. Polycarbonate Telescoping Snow Shovels
Cold-weather campers can expect to confront deep snow. To help them prepare for it, buy them this lightweight (20 oz) snow shovel, which can be used to dig out a campsite or even build a temporary shelter. / Sports Import LTD.; www.sportsimportsltd.com; $37.95
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