Keeping Warm In Winter – Part 3 : Insulate!

In this last part of our series on “Keeping Warm this Winter”, we need to work out WHERE the cold is coming from and take measures to insulate against that.

With your Body…

It is the extremities of your body which feel the cold first – and most. Make sure your feet, hands and head are well and truly covered! If that means thick socks, ugh boots, gloves, scarves, hoodies, beanies, and hats… go for it! Use whatever you need to keep the cold at bay!

Obviously, your legs, arms, and body will also feel the cold, so layer up! Depending on how cold it is, long thermal undies might be needed, along with layers of clothing – shirts, jumpers, jackets, etc.

A hot drink in your belly will help, and a hot water bottle (if you don’t have a partner) to cuddle, will also help 🙂

A quality sleeping bag, and/or multiple doonas and blankets will be needed.

Remember to insulate UNDER your sleeping quarters as well with a sleeping mat, to limit to cold coming UP from under your bed.

Inside your Tent

Keep any nasty breezes at bay! Make sure openings on the windy side are secured. You could use a tarp to erect a windbreak.

You could even erect another tarp to go OVER your whole campsite to reduce the cold falling from above.

Put ground covering down! Insulate under where you sit and sleep! Old cardboard boxes and/or newspaper are good and can easily be disposed of on your last day in a campfire.

Heed the warnings about Carbon Monoxide poisoning / death from using portable gas heating in enclosed spaces! Make sure you have adequate ventilation if you decide to use these!

Inside your Van

Same again… watch where those nasty breezes come from and make sure windows, doors and vents are shut! Don’t forget, there is one dirty great big vent at the bottom of most caravan doors, which will let the cold air in! Putting something over that (like a large cushion or piece of cardboard) will help.

The hatches in a caravan roof are usually made from metal. Cut a piece of cardboard or stiff foam to fit the hole and provide insulation from the cold outside air.

Glass windows need to be covered – at least with heavy curtains. You might like to use more pieces of heavy cardboard (or even solar screens) at night time to place over the glass. Try not to place beds and/or seats immediately adjacent to any exposed glass. If you don’t believe that it’s cold there… get a thermometer, move it around a little, and be amazed at the temperature differences within your van.

In a motorhome, cover the front and side windows in the cab with solar screens… or at least provide some form of thermal barrier between that area and the rest of the vehicle.

Floor coverings… in winter, the lino and/or timber floor just doesn’t work for me. It’s cold! And if your feet are cold… well you know what that means. A thick, roll-up rug for the floor, under your table / chair, will help take that chill off.

Cardboard? Really? Yep… I have mentioned cardboard a lot above, and if you’re wondering why, remember that it is cheap, light to carry, packs flat to store, easily cut to shape, and is a great insulator.

What other hints and tips have you got to help keep warm in Winter? We’d love to hear, so please add them in the comments below 🙂

Series IndexPart #1 Follow the Sun : Part #2 Heating : Part #3 : Insulate

Our cover picture is of the Apsley River in Walcha, NSW, on a frosty morning @ -6 degrees C. Reprinted with kind permission from Jennifer’s Pics