|3 pocket lighters
||Pocket lighters are
cheap and light, and fire is very important on a cold
winter night. Bring at least three of them just in case
one or two stop working. If your lighter gets jammed
with snow it may not work until you remove the snow and
dry it, so make sure your lighters are in a place where
they don't get directly exposed to snow. Don't use
matches, they run out quite quickly, and once they get
wet they'll never work again.
||Either a Leatherman
tool, Swiss Army knife, or something similar will do.
These tools are excellent if you need to fix some broken
gear, such as a snowshoe or a ski binding.
|Lightweight wood stove
These stoves have not been around that long and most
people have never heard of them. You need to have a
stove in order to melt and boil water to drink, to
keep your body temperature up and your energy
consumption down. Anyone who has tried to use a gas
stove in very cold temperatures knows how much trouble
they are, sometimes they just don't work, which could
mean death on a cold winter night, not worth
it. Wood stoves are a much better option, they
always work. I would recommend the Trailstove, this wood stove
weighs around one pound but you don't need to bring any
fuel since it runs on wood. Another great feature of
these stoves is that they generate quite a lot of heat,
enough to raise the temperature inside your emergency
snow shelter to a descent level, just make sure you have
good ventilation .
The reason I'm
writing such great things about portable wood stoves is
that mine saved my life in January of 2001 during a
snowstorm. I was stuck for three nights in a snow
shelter, I didn't have much food but I was able to drink
plenty of hot water to keep me warm. I believe I would
have frozen to death without my Trailstove.
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||With a camp saw you
will be able to quickly cut down branches to make a snow
shelter or for fire wood. You can do this with your
multipurpose tool too but having a real saw will save
you a lot of energy and frustration. You can also use a
campsaw as a snow saw to cut hard snow into building
blocks for a snow shelter.
|Light weight cooking pot
||This is a very
important item, you will need a pot to melt and heat
water. Drinking hot water will warm up your whole body.
I would recommend just getting a cheap mess kit and
using the pot from it. You could just grab a pot from
your kitchen but these tend to be relatively heavy which
is OK in your kitchen but not in your backpack.
||A tarp is a very
useful item in the snow. You can use it as an inner
roof for your snowshelter.
|You need a very warm sleeping bag for
|You need to isolate your body from the
|String is very useful for making
snowshelters, emergency snowshoes, or fixing broken
equipment. Bring at least 20 feet.
||Even if you're not planning on sleeping
in a tent it is a good idea to bring one. Bad weather
can develop very quickly and with a tent you have a
shelter in a few minutes.
||Bring plenty of high energy food. Don't
waste your money on fancy energy bars though. Chocolate
bars and granola bars are just as good and they taste
||Find out how cold it gets at night where
you will be going and bring enough clothes to keep you
warm at that temperature.