Winter Camping

Don’t wait for the first snowfall. Trek down into the basement, out into the garage, or deep into the closet and pull out all of your winter gear—tonight. A thorough preseason evaluation of everything from clothes to skis to crampons will help preserve your gear, keep you safe, and prevent problems once you do head…

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There are few items of gear as simple, inexpensive, and effective at increasing your warmth and comfort in the cold. What’s more, it weighs only a few ounces and fits easily in most jacket pockets. What is this magic piece of cold-weather gear? A neck gaiter. A neck gaiter is essentially just a short tube…

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The price of goose down has soared over the past few years, a trend clearly evident in the world of sleeping bags and puffy jackets. And, while exact numbers are hard to come by, I’ve noticed that many gear manufacturers have begun to use duck down instead of goose down in some of their sleeping…

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Winter coats the Northeast landscape with glorious adventure, opening doors of opportunity that can only be experienced during this magical season. Here are eight exceptional outings, from easy to epic, to consider adding to your life-long agenda. 1) Visit a frozen waterfall Summer spray transforms into crystal sculpture at the Northeast’s greatest winter waterfalls. The…

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Things you think about while shoveling out more than a foot of snow. (Again.) How high can I consistently throw snow while shoveling? Will it clear the summit of Snow Planet, the mountainous pile next to my driveway? And if all this snow around me instantly melted, how much water would I be standing in?…

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It’s been snowing a bit in New England lately, a slow-motion avalanche from the sky that has buried the entire region under feet of snow. It’s been a remarkable, fascinating, and exhausting spell of weather. So take a break from shoveling out for the umpteenth time and dig instead into a trove of map-based data…

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Can you dig it? Photo: Chewonki Semester School; Flickr A quinzee is a giant pile of snow that you then hollow out to create a shelter—essentially it’s a build-it-yourself snow cave. Knowing how to construct one is a useful winter survival skill, a fun activity to do with kids, and a potential use for the…

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Coffee is good. Brain-splitting headaches are bad. If you’re a backpacking caffeine addict like me—or you simply enjoy the occasional backcountry brew—you’ll need the tools to produce a cup or three of this headache-staving, performance-enhancing, deliciously stimulating beverage. Here are your backcountry coffee options, rated for weight, quality of brew, and convenience. Instant opportunities It’s…

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Most disposable hand warmers provide several hours of quality heat, but what if you only need warmth for a limited time? Don’t waste perfectly good heat by throwing out a hand warmer after only a short use! Save it for when you need it with this über-simple technique. Use the heat when you need it….

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I’ve used an extensive array of outdoor gear over 20 years of hiking, camping, and backpacking. Here are my top five most used, most abused, most durable, and most loved items. Please share yours! Mountain Hardwear Subzero Parka I purchased this ultra-warm, super-sized down parka a decade ago—and still revel in its delicious warmth every…

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