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Dressing for the Cold

The importance of dressing warmingly during winter activities can not be understated. It is necessary not only for the enjoyment but the safety of the individual in cold weather.

The key to dressing for the cold is layering. Each layer performs a specific function and outer layer can be shed as things begin to heat up throughout the day and the activity level. There are three basic layers:

  1. Base Layer – (wicking) – This is the layer that is closest to your skin. It’s purpose is to wick sweat away from your skin.
  2. Middle layer – (insulation) – Insulation is used to retain body heat.
  3. Outer Layer – (shell) – The shell provide protection from wind, rain, and other things the outside environment throws at you.

Depending upon the weather conditions it may be necessary to either have multiple layers within a layer or different components depending upon the conditions that are expected.

Base Layer

The purpose of the base layer is to wick sweat away from the skin. Sweating if your bodies way of helping to control temperature. In hot environments when the skin is exposed to air that is no problem, as you sweat, the sweat evaporates and cools the skin. When you are bundled up for the cold weather it is not possible for the water in your sweat to escape and take the heat with it.

The wicking layer provides the same function as the evaporation. It allows the water to be drawn away from the skin and allow your bodies heat regulation system to work. It also prevents the moisture from working against you when or if the wet layer is exposed.

When choosing a wicking layer it is important to choose the proper material. Wool and silk are good natural choices, but cotton is not. There are also synthetics and blends that also work well.

The colder it is outside, it may be necessary to add additional or wicking layers that cover more of the body.

For this layer to be effective wicking the sweat away from your skin, it must be next to your skin. The wicking lay works best when it is comfortable snug fit.

Insulation Layer

The insulating layer retains the body body heat. Depending upon the expected weather conditions and the activities, it may be necessary to have multiple insulation layers.

For this layer, it is important to choose materials that provide good insulating properties. These could include polyester fleece, down , or synthetic insulated clothing.

The colder it is or the more variation expected in the temperature or activity level, it may be advantage to have multiple insulation layers.

As the activity level or temperature changes throughout the day, it may be advantageous to be able to control the amount insulation.

Outer Shell

The outer shell provide protection from the elements. It should be wind and water resistant at the least. It also needs to fit comfortably over the other layers. Crushing the insulating layer will reduce its effectiveness.

Hats, boots, and gloves are important. Do not forget to include them.

In more extreme weather conditions, a more aggressive outer layer may be required.

Tuesday, 2019-01-15 – Troop Meeting – Klondike Derby Prep

We will continue the Klondike derby preparation at this week’s meeting. We will be building the sled and finish collected the equipment we will need to take with us on Saturday. So please remember to bring the items you were assigned at the last meeting.

We will be meeting at Hills Church at 7:15a on Saturday to load the sled and equipment, and depart for the derby by 7:30a. Do not forget to pack a lunch. We will stop in New Stanton on the way home for dinner. The cost of the derby and dinner will be paid for by the troop. It is expected we will be home around 8pm on Saturday.

We will also need final commitments on who will be attending this event, so please let me know if you will not be attending the derby this weekend.

Preparing for the Klondike Derby

In a Klondike Derby, Scout patrols acting as huskies pull specially designed homemade sleds around a field course marked by stations named for towns or cities, such as Dawson or Fairbanks. At each town the Scouts tackle exercises in problem-solving.

A successful patrol will practice their scout skills and teamwork in advance of the event, and carry the necessary equipment on their person and the sled. Below you will find a suggested list of items that should be packed on the sled, and personal equipment for each scout.

Sled Items

Patrol Flag
Patrol First Aid Kit
(include at least 4 crevates, and padded splinting material)
Patrol Roster
Paper & Pencil
Scout Handbook
Scout Field Book
Fire Kit
  • Matches/Lighter
  • Hot Spark
  • Tinder (dryer lint, pine duff, bark,…)
Kindling and Wood for a small fire
Rope ( 3/8” – ½” diameter, ends whipped)
  • 2 x 12’
  • 6 x 6’
  • 50’ paracord
Water (3 gallons)
3 x 6’ Staves ( 1 3/8” diameter minimum)
Bow Saw /w blade cover
Scout Axe /w blade cover
Small Shovel
GPS Unit
Paper Towels (1 roll)
Toilet Paper (2 rolls)
Aluminum Foil (1 roll, heavy duty)
2 – 40 gal trash bag (heavy duty)
Ground Cloth ( 12’ x 12’ minimum)
2-3 Tarps (to build a shelter)
2 Blankets
Cooking Equipment
  • Stove (and fuel)
  • Pot to boil water /w lid
  • Frying pan
  • Utensils (tongs, spoon, spatula)
  • Oil or cooking spray
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Cleanup Supplies  (dish soap, dish rag, towel)

Personal Items

Sturdy Boot (waterproof advised, no sneaker allowed)
Weather Appropriate Clothing (dress in layers, avoid cotton)
  • Base layer (long underwear)
  • Sweater/Fleece
  • Coat
  • Hat
  • Scarf
  • Gloves or Mittens
Wet weather gear (poncho, rain suit, etc)
Extra Clothing
  • 2 Plastic Bread Bags (to put in boots if they leak)
  • Socks
  • Mittens/Gloves
Mess Kit (Plate, Bowl, Cup, Utensils)
Personal First Aid Kit
Water Bottle
Pocket Knife & Tote’n’Chit Card
Matches in a Waterproof Case and/or Hot Spark and Striker & Firemanship Card
Pocket Notebook & Pen/Pencil

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