It would be a disaster if your campers hated their time with you solely due to being cold. During the 2010/2011 fiscal year, 2,358,896 camping visits were recorded in British Columbia’s parks. Camping is enjoyed by many youngsters each summer and, for hosts and organizers, combating heat loss is as essential as creating and putting up camp signs. As a coordinator, you should be prepared for all weather, including a bitter cold snap and icy rain, and have provisions in place to keep your guests warm and happy.
Why does the body lose heat when camping?
There are five ways heat is lost when camping: Radiation, conduction, convection, evaporation and respiration. When individuals are camping they are away from heat sources other than a campfire and are subjected to varying outside conditions for a considerable period of time. For most people, this isn’t something they are used to and it can take some practice and getting used to to understand that the trick is to prevent heat loss rather than to try to tackle it once it’s set in. That’s where expert campers such as organizers come in as they can share their tips and advice on the best methods to beat the cold.
Staying warm before heading to bed
Before the kids head to their tents to get their heads down for the night, encourage them to warm up. Simple things such as consuming a hot beverage, wearing thermals and additional layers and sitting by the campfire before bed are great ways to warm the body up before hitting the sack. If a child opts not to follow these tricks, then you should do everything in your power to persuade some form of warmth is sought by the camper and, if need be, you may need to check on them during the night to ensure they are comfortable and aren't suffering with heat loss.
Keeping the tent warm
Parts of British Columbia is hit with more than 200 days of rain each year, therefore, the chance of your summer camp being hit by bursts of rain is high. Your campers will need a shelter and sleeping apparatus which is warm, functional and, ideally, waterproof. Good quality tents, padded sleeping bags and an insulating sleeping mat should be the bare minimum that any camp’s guests should have for the duration of their stay. If you provide equipment, ensure these are on your list. Otherwise, send a detailed checklist to parents well in advance of their son or daughter’s visit.
Heat loss when camping isn’t something to worry about so long as hosting organizations do all they can to promote the benefits and methods of staying warm.
Many Thanks to Jenny McGee for contributing this blog post!