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Warmer camp pants ?

Old 01-23-19, 11:14 PM
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Warmer camp pants ?

Heading out here in a few weeks, mid to late February, and though I'll be further south, it won't be far enough such that I'm still likely to see some chilly temps. The down bag I'll be taking is rated at 30 degrees, but of course that only means that I won't die if it gets down to 40 deg. I would like to know what you think about down pants to sleep in and for use around camp. Do you have any suggestions or other ideas such as insulated long john bottoms beneath my normal camp pants. My upper torso I've got covered : )
As always, thank you for your input.
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Old 01-24-19, 06:56 AM
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I just do the long johns under the nylon trekking pants I normally wear in camp. I wear them as cycling tights under shorts as well. Double duty is always good.

I wouldn't bother with the expense and bulk of down pants, especially in 30F conditions. Other than the femoral artery area, you don't lose a lot of heat from the legs, I heard.
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Old 01-24-19, 07:41 AM
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take a pair of super-warm thick socks. i find i can deal with colder temps if i can keep my feet warm.
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Old 01-24-19, 08:11 AM
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When I was in Iceland, I had a 30F bag and temps in the mid-low 30's. I took a set of thermal base layer long underwear, and was perfectly comfortable in that and a stocking cap in the sleeping bag.

What temps do you reasonably expect?
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Old 01-24-19, 08:21 AM
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Down is great, until it gets wet. No new news there. So standing around in cold drizzle/rain won't be much fun in down. What's the forecast? How cold are you expecting it to get? a 30* bag is pretty much a summer weight one around here. Andy.
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Old 01-24-19, 09:01 AM
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In camp, tights + pants oughta do the trick. In the sleeping bag, tights. And on cold mornings, you can bike in them.
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Old 01-24-19, 09:44 AM
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I take one pair of lycra tights, one pair of micro fleece tights and a water resistant wind shell. That combo used in various ways can keep you warm in multiple situations.
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Old 01-24-19, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by robow
Heading out here in a few weeks
where's "here"?
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Old 01-24-19, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by andrewclaus
I just do the long johns under the nylon trekking pants I normally wear in camp.
Bingo! A good pair of Duofold LJs under trekking pants is precisely what I don if I need extra warmth. If I am sitting by a fire I will usually wear them under the pants with the legs zipped off and then take the pants off when I hit the sack. That setup also helps thwart flying biters.
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Old 01-24-19, 09:56 AM
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Originally Posted by saddlesores
take a pair of super-warm thick socks. i find i can deal with colder temps if i can keep my feet warm.
This^^^too. Loves me a nice, warm pair of socks when the temperature drops.
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Old 01-24-19, 09:58 AM
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as I'm sure you know, there are tights, and there are tights. So many types and how warm they are.
I've been riding a lot more this winter than other years, and am outside doing skiing or shovelling or whatever, and have been out a lot lately in the range you are describing, near freezing ish, and down to -25c or so. Sitting around not being active is a different matter, so if it were me knowing I'd be in the near freezing temp range, I would take my much warmer but bulky but not heavy fleece pants as an underthing--but I know how my skinny donkey works and what I am more comfortable in--so in the end you have to know what works for you, and of course balance that out with space and volume considerations.

for me its worth having a slightly bulkier underthing if I know I'll be sitting around and putting a priority on me feeling comfortable. Other people have diff levels of what is comfortable, so use common sense and to this old skinny guy, I prefer to err slightly on having warmer clothing, and appreciate it when its needed.

as mentioned, very warm socks, even with thin liner socks inside thick wool socks that arent tight will make a big diff in your comfort, just as a toque (a winter hat for you Yanks) and a good neckup (tubular scarf thing) as well as handwear.

being cold sucks, and as also mentioned, if there is rain, down has that downside, and fleece and whatnot will still keep you warm if damp and dries out quickly if it ever gets wet.

needless to say, good raingear , top bottom and shoes , with colder temps is a must.
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Old 01-24-19, 10:36 AM
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Originally Posted by saddlesores
take a pair of super-warm thick socks. i find i can deal with colder temps if i can keep my feet warm.
Couldn't agree more, a pair have already found their way into one of my panniers, along with a stocking cap for my balding noggin.

Temps shouldn't get any lower than 25 degrees.......hopefully. OK, I'm a puss when it comes to camping in the cold, there I said it.

Many times in the past I have resorted to just sleeping in my my cycling shorts and leg warmers beneath my pants but I would prefer not to on this trip since I'm going in knowing it will be chilly at night. I have a much warmer lower rated bag but the darn thing is too bulky and heavy to carry easily. I've tried sleeping bag liners in the past and really saw very little difference than without, though there are some newer materials available now (but that still wouldn't help with just general camp apparel)

Seems no one is partial to down pants but rather a good polypro base layer beneath the normal camp pants ?
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Old 01-24-19, 10:55 AM
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I used to go canoeing in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area in the Minnesota and Canadian border every year in early October and occasionally in May. We usually assumed there was a one out of three chance of snow and that below freezing temps would occur at least one night. In the late 1980s on one trip the lake started to freeze when we were up there, a Grumman 18 foot lightweight is a good ice breaker but does not steer at all in thin ice.

Stocking cap that fits well on top of the head, you do not want it to fit loosely as it might fall off while sleeping. No tassel as a tassel can interfere with sleeping bag hood.

Long underwear bottoms. If having them on under regular pants is not enough, put on your rain pants for a third layer. Some years I brought polartec pants to the Boundary Waters instead of long underwear if the forecast before I left suggested that it might get unusually cold up there that year, but they consume several liters of volume in the pack so they can be a bit problematic if you are trying to push them into a pannier.

I always took a down jacket up there (TNF Nuptse) but you could probably get by with a polartec jacket and down vest. If you need more over that, put on your rain jacket. If it is quite cold at night I often would drape the down jacket over the top of the sleeping bag in torso area for a bit more insulation thickness.

If you decide to go to the Himalayas, bring the down pants.
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Old 01-24-19, 11:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN
I used to go canoeing in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area in the Minnesota and Canadian border every year in early October and occasionally in May. We usually assumed there was a one out of three chance of snow and that below freezing temps would occur at least one night. In the late 1980s on one trip the lake started to freeze when we were up there, a Grumman 18 foot lightweight is a good ice breaker but does not steer at all in thin ice.

Stocking cap that fits well on top of the head, you do not want it to fit loosely as it might fall off while sleeping. No tassel as a tassel can interfere with sleeping bag hood.

Long underwear bottoms. If having them on under regular pants is not enough, put on your rain pants for a third layer. Some years I brought polartec pants to the Boundary Waters instead of long underwear if the forecast before I left suggested that it might get unusually cold up there that year, but they consume several liters of volume in the pack so they can be a bit problematic if you are trying to push them into a pannier.

I always took a down jacket up there (TNF Nuptse) but you could probably get by with a polartec jacket and down vest. If you need more over that, put on your rain jacket. If it is quite cold at night I often would drape the down jacket over the top of the sleeping bag in torso area for a bit more insulation thickness.

If you decide to go to the Himalayas, bring the down pants.
ha, I can clearly say that I have never paddled a Grumman through ice--although I still own a regular 17 footer, that is certainly not lightweight. Its been years since we've used it, but it seems to me that the regular ones weigh something like 78 pounds. But they are durable suckers thats for sure. Grew up paddling Grummans as there was always one in the family, and for river stuff using mostly MadRivers abs stuff that the canoe club had.

re the fleece polartec pants, I dont know if robow uses a rackpack,but thats where they are handy, for bulky stuff that is a pain to stuff into panniers.
Like I said though, being a skinny little bugger, I'd even strap my fleece pants onto the rear rack in a drybag just to have them, I too aint too keen on winter camping, and really hate being cold.
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Old 01-24-19, 12:15 PM
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1. I personally put more emphasis on head gear. A merino skull cap takes very little space and makes a big difference.
2. You can extend the temperature range of your bag with a liner. S2S claims that their Thermolite adds 8C (15F) to a bag's range.
3. You may want to consider carrying a couple of disposable handwarmers.
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Old 01-24-19, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by gauvins
1. I personally put more emphasis on head gear. A merino skull cap takes very little space and makes a big difference.
Before I embarked on my first tour, which involved crossing the North Cascades Highway in late May and other riding in potentially cold areas, I asked an experienced friend what I might overlook and sorely miss once I was out on the road. She told me two things: A good flashlight and a warm, wool hat. She was correct.
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Old 01-24-19, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by djb
...
re the fleece polartec pants, I dont know if robow uses a rackpack,but thats where they are handy, for bulky stuff that is a pain to stuff into panniers.
....
Yeah, polartec pants can be great in the campsite on a cold day. On a couple of really cold days I wore the polartec pants under my regular camping pants, so the polartec was like underwear and the regular pants held the wind out and the warmth in.

Yesterday I had my snowshoes out, but warm enough outside did not need any long underwear or fleece, etc.

***

Sorry for being off topic.

Originally Posted by djb
ha, I can clearly say that I have never paddled a Grumman through ice--although I still own a regular 17 footer, that is certainly not lightweight. ...
....
I think the standard 17 was 75 pounds, had three ribs in the hull, hull thickness was 0.050 inches. But I think the 17 foot lightweight was 60 pounds, five ribs and hull thickness was only 0.032 inches. A friend of mine used to sell them, he said the lightweights came pre-dented from the factory, mine had a few dents when new because the hull thickness was so thin you could flex it with your fingers. The 18 foot lightweight was 66 pounds, nine ribs in the bottom and also had a hull thickness of 0.032 inches. Later they came out with a different alloy and a thickness in between standard and lightweight, I think they called it the super, but I never paddled one. I later upgraded to a Wenona Minnesota II, but I still own the Grumman.
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Old 01-24-19, 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN
Yeah, polartec pants can be great in the campsite on a cold day. On a couple of really cold days I wore the polartec pants under my regular camping pants, so the polartec was like underwear and the regular pants held the wind out and the warmth in.

Yesterday I had my snowshoes out, but warm enough outside did not need any long underwear or fleece, etc.

***

Sorry for being off topic.



I think the standard 17 was 75 pounds, had three ribs in the hull, hull thickness was 0.050 inches. But I think the 17 foot lightweight was 60 pounds, five ribs and hull thickness was only 0.032 inches. A friend of mine used to sell them, he said the lightweights came pre-dented from the factory, mine had a few dents when new because the hull thickness was so thin you could flex it with your fingers. The 18 foot lightweight was 66 pounds, nine ribs in the bottom and also had a hull thickness of 0.032 inches. Later they came out with a different alloy and a thickness in between standard and lightweight, I think they called it the super, but I never paddled one. I later upgraded to a Wenona Minnesota II, but I still own the Grumman.
neat about the lightweights, I'll ask my dad, he'll remember all that stuff and will like talking about it.

re fleece pants, I use mine regularly under bib type windbreak only snow pants, and add tights under the fleece pants if really cold, and dont have cold legs at -20 or -30 even (assuming feet and rest of me are ok)

robow, I guess you can have lighter tights or whatever under pants, and then use your sleeping bag over you or half ways in while at camp--but again, you know whats best for you.
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Old 01-24-19, 08:49 PM
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Robow, I use a pair of lightweight fleece-like pants that are great for all cold weather activities, including cycling. I've used them for winter multi-day ski tours, snow camping, ski patrol work, winter climbing, and cycling. They roll up into a compact bundle and are very durable. About 90% of the people in my ski patrol use these pants. They are on the expensive side, but a good value for what they are. They are wind resistant up to 35 mph, dry fast, and are comfortable in a wide range of temperatures.

Sporthill XC Pants

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Old 01-24-19, 09:23 PM
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Like Doug, I have had a pair of these Sporthill pants for a really long time. Initially bought for cross country skiing, I began using them when commuting in the spring and fall, and also in the last few years, with winter riding. The wind block properties are really quite remarkable, not something I woiuld have believed to be honest, but I sometimes ride at down to -15c and the wind can easily feel like -20c, and with med thickness tights under these pants, along with some underwear that have a windblock front panel, I am can ride for 45mins and be ok leg wise----sure, -15c is a bit extreme and at the max and I'm only comfortable because of working hard, but at lwarmer temps using these and the tights underneath (and making sure the rest of me is kept warm and dressed properly, feet, torso, head, hands) they work really really well.

I wlll try to take a photo to show how much I have used these riding, as there are two distinct seat wear marks on my derriere now, Ive probably been riding in these for well over ten years.

while Doug describes them as "fleece like", they certainly arent like polartec fleece, but thinner, stretchy and have that wind block stuff in them somehow.....

when I mention my "fleece pants", I mean real polartec type fluffy fleece pants--that clearly need a windblock pant over them to work properly as insulation, just like any fleece sweater or jacket.
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Old 01-24-19, 10:53 PM
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I've found that a pair of fleece lined leggings, like you see girls wearing as pants in cold weather these days, are pretty great under regular or rain pants when you need to keep warm. In my opinion, they're both warmer and Way more comfortable than regular long johns. You'll probably want to get about 3 sizes larger than normal, though. I'm ~5'7" 150lbs and ended up settling on a XXL size, made for a female of "220-250lbs" or something like that. At that size they Still fit completely against my skin from waist to calf, just not tight as hell. They're also a little warmer and Way more comfortable in a less tight size. I tried a XL the first time and they were tight enough that it was an annoyance. I don't know why a 220lb person would want to sausage themselves into these... At $10/pair, they can't be beat for comfort and warmth. I now just wear fleece leggings and nice rain pants if I'm riding in temps below low 50s, rain or not. The fleece makes them able to deal with moisture well.
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Old 01-25-19, 09:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Doug64
Robow, I use a pair of lightweight fleece-like pants that are great for all cold weather activities, including cycling. I've used them for winter multi-day ski tours, snow camping, ski patrol work, winter climbing, and cycling. They roll up into a compact bundle and are very durable. About 90% of the people in my ski patrol use these pants. They are on the expensive side, but a good value for what they are. They are wind resistant up to 35 mph, dry fast, and are comfortable in a wide range of temperatures.

Sporthill XC Pants
Originally Posted by djb
Like Doug, I have had a pair of these Sporthill pants for a really long time. Initially bought for cross country skiing, I began using them when commuting in the spring and fall, and also in the last few years, with winter riding. The wind block properties are really quite remarkable, not something I woiuld have believed to be honest, but I sometimes ride at down to -15c and the wind can easily feel like -20c, and with med thickness tights under these pants, along with some underwear that have a windblock front panel, I am can ride for 45mins and be ok leg wise----sure, -15c is a bit extreme and at the max and I'm only comfortable because of working hard, but at lwarmer temps using these and the tights underneath (and making sure the rest of me is kept warm and dressed properly, feet, torso, head, hands) they work really really well.

I wlll try to take a photo to show how much I have used these riding, as there are two distinct seat wear marks on my derriere now, Ive probably been riding in these for well over ten years.

while Doug describes them as "fleece like", they certainly arent like polartec fleece, but thinner, stretchy and have that wind block stuff in them somehow.....

when I mention my "fleece pants", I mean real polartec type fluffy fleece pants--that clearly need a windblock pant over them to work properly as insulation, just like any fleece sweater or jacket.
Those look the same as my current shell pants which come from MEC in Canada. They are super light for the weight weenies: https://www.mec.ca/en/product/5033-250/Adanac-Tights
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Old 01-25-19, 09:44 AM
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thanks hf, next time I'm in mec I'll take a look at them as I've never noticed them before.
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Old 01-30-19, 08:49 PM
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Get a pair of power stretch heavyweight tights from Foxwear (custom made but inexpensive). Power Stretch in HW is pretty windproof but breathes super well. You can use them over your biking shorts, for sleeping, etc... Very wide range and very warm. I've worn mine all over the world - Minnesota winter cycling, Iceland camping, Norway bike touring and they have been fabulous.

J.
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Old 01-31-19, 11:28 AM
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While outside yesterday in the below zero (F) temperatures, I remembered this thread while the wind was blowing through my polartec pants even though the wind was quite light. Because the wind was light, I skipped the rain pants. But the day before when the wind was up around 20 mph with 30 mph gusts, I put rain pants on to cut the wind and the rain pants were quite effective at helping to keep me warm in the wind. This was not on a bike tour or anything like that, it was just being outside near home during the sub zero (F) polar vortex temperatures.

So, if you bring some polartec pants or knit pants for insulation, you might want some wind or rain pants over them if it is windy.
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