We all know how unpredictable the British weather can be. No matter what season you select for a camping trip, it’s always good to be prepared for a chilly night or two. Sure, grabbing a superb sleeping bag and a top-quality tent is a great place to start. But in order to stay as toasty as possible during a camping holiday, it’s important to develop an understanding of how your body gains and loses heat.
We’ve put together a little guide here outlining everything you need to know about heat loss – along with some invaluable tips on how to battle it…
Body heat: the basics The human body needs to be in tune with its surroundings so the organs can fire on all cylinders. That’s why, when we are exposed to chilly outdoor weather, the body’s heat levels will automatically plummet to match the surrounding temperature. Balance is the human body’s best friend, and whenever it’s subjected to colder conditions, heat will vanish until a sort of equilibrium is reached.
There are three main ways in which the body loses heat: through convection, conduction, and radiation.
Convection refers to the displacement of warm air around the body with cooler air, whilst conduction involves losing heat by coming into contact with an object that has a lower temperature. Radiation is the main source of body heat reduction, as our warmth is lost through heat waves to the air.
The camping conundrum Body heat is a much bigger problem in the great outdoors. There are fewer covered spots to take shelter, and no household appliances to generate the much-needed warmth required to bring our body temperatures back up to comfortable levels.
That’s why you need the right camping gear – and an awesome sleeping bag ought to be top of your shopping list. These essential pieces of camping equipment are built with insulating fabrics, which trap the air inside and prevent it from escaping your body. With nowhere to go, the heat waves remain contained inside the bag and ensure your body remains at a toasty temperature.
The same goes for your tent. If the fabric has top-notch insulation qualities and the zips can be fastened tightly, there’s simply nowhere for the hot air to seep out, or for the cold air to creep in, at night.
Smart moves to stay warm Whilst a great tent and sleeping bag offer a fine defence against body heat loss, there are a couple of things you can do to minimise the risk even further.
Wearing the right type of clothing is important, for example. Multiple layers and thermal garments can help to keep body heat locked inside. Several pairs of socks and waterproof shoes can also prevent your feet from succumbing to cold temperatures when they come into contact with frost and puddles on the ground.
Wedging a sleeping mat between you and the floor offers a much-needed layer of protection from the cold ground below. It allows the insulating fabrics of your sleeping bag to do their thing without interference from competing factors.
Snuggling up with a hot water bottle can also work wonders, but the last piece of advice we’d like to leave you with is this: avoid going to bed cold, if you can. Try your very best to warm yourself up inside your tent by throwing on multiple layers and increasing your body temperature. The hotter you are when you slide into your sleeping bag, the more heat will be trapped inside the material for the duration of the night.
Knowing how to retain body heat can help you to stay happy, healthy and comfortable during your camping trip.
Yet to book your getaway? We have a terrific selection of camp sites scattered across the country with a wide range of facilities.
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