Photo by LeonU via iStock
For most people, the arrival of fall means it’s finally time to stuff ourselves with turkey and mashed potatoes, carve spooky jack-o-lanterns, and get cozy by the fireplace. For adventurous and outdoorsy folk, though, it also marks the official start of something else–the cold weather camping season!
October, November, and December are some of the best months of the year to explore the backcountry, thanks to their colorful foliage, crisp mountain air, and empty campgrounds. However, they also bring colder temperatures and more unpredictable weather. That’s why, to ensure your fall camping trips are comfortable and enjoyable, you must be well prepared.
That’s where we come in! In this article, we’ll share four must-own items guaranteed to make your fall camping experience cozier and more relaxing. From an efficient portable heater and warm puffy blanket to a high-quality cook set and sturdy 3-season tent, these camping essentials will help you embrace the cold weather while making lifelong memories.
With that in mind, keep reading to learn more about the cold weather camping gear that will make your fall camping (and winter camping) trips more comfortable!
Check out the video above by Justin Outdoors for more fall backpacking and camping gear recommendations.
Table of Contents
- Fire Up a Diesel Heater for Your Cold Weather Camping Trips
- >A Warm Puffy Blanket is a Must for Cold Weather Camping
- Invest in a Robust Cook Set for Cold Weather Camping Meals
- Keep the Weather at Bay With a 3-Season Tent
- Final Thoughts on Cold Weather Camping
Fire Up a Diesel Heater for Your Cold Weather Camping Trips
It’s a compact, lightweight, and efficient heater that runs on diesel or kerosene. In eight hours of use, it burns only 3-4 liters of fuel, even at high altitudes (up to 8,200 feet). It’s also quiet, so you can get much-needed shut-eye without having to listen to a clunky, loud heater all night!
One of the biggest advantages of this heater is that it offers instant “dry heat.” This means that you won’t have to worry about any unwanted condensation or moisture forming in your tent while it’s running. It also works great in camper vans, RVs, camping trailers, boats, and even ice-fishing huts.
For example, I use this heater to heat my various ground tents, but it offers enough heat that I can split it between my tent and a buddy’s tent to keep both tents warm. I could also use it to keep my Jeep Gladiator warm if I decided to go car camping. That kind of flexibility is hugely valuable!
Another important thing to note is that you set up the heater outside of your tent, and it pumps in the hot air with a duct hose (5 or 10 feet). This innovative design is safer than most portable heaters because there is less risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Furthermore, it allows you to save precious space inside your tent for a roomier camping experience.
If you enjoy cold weather camping like I do, a reliable source of heat is a must, and that’s exactly what you get with a portable diesel heater from Planar Heaters!
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A Warm Puffy Blanket is a Must for Cold Weather Camping
Just like when you are sleeping at home, a comfortable blanket makes a huge difference in your sleep quality when cold weather camping. And there’s nothing cozier and warmer than this beautiful Grand Teton National Park Puffy Blanket by Rumpl. It comes in three sizes: junior, 1-person, and 2-person.
Better yet, it’s vegan and environmentally friendly because it’s made from 100% recycled materials. The shell is recycled 30D ripstop polyester, and the filling is recycled 3D hollow fiber synthetic insulation. Moreover, the blanket has a DWR coating that makes it water and stainproof.
Do you prefer to camp with a sleeping bag? In that case, puffy blankets are still a great camping accessory because you can use them to keep warm when walking around your campsite or sitting by the campfire.
Invest in a Robust Cook Set for Cold Weather Camping Meals
A hot meal or drink is never more appreciated than after waking up on a chilly fall morning or before falling asleep on a frigid winter evening. Of course, the first thing you will need to cook in the backcountry is a reliable camping stove. After that, the next thing to invest in is a lightweight and portable cooking set.
We use the Flex™ 4 Cook Set by MSR. It includes two different-sized pots/lids, four plates, and four cups. Thanks to an ingenious design, everything packs into itself, making it super portable, and the whole kit only weighs 1.67kg (3 pounds 11 ounces). The two pots are aluminum, and the plates/cups are plastic.
If you are only one or two people, the MSR Quick™ 2 Cook Set is a fantastic alternative. Additionally, the MSR Windburner Personal Stove System and MSR Windburner Press Kit combo is a popular choice for tea and coffee lovers.
Keep the Weather at Bay With a 3-Season Tent
Since temperatures are colder, weather is less predictable, and rain/snow is more common, you should always use a dependable 3-season tent when cold weather camping. 3-season tents are stronger and more durable than summer ones and keep you warm and dry during the strongest storms.
Our favorite 3-season tent for fall camping is the MSR Hubba Hubba™ 3-person tent. Made from nylon and mesh, it’s an extremely spacious and breathable tent, even when the weatherproof rain cover is on. It comfortably sleeps one, two, or three people.
If you are camping as a family or a large group, opt for the MSR Habitude™ tent instead. It’s a giant tent that can fit six people plus gear. While the Hubba Hubba is an excellent option for backpacking due to its lightweight and portable size, the Habitude is better suited for car camping.
Final Thoughts on Cold Weather Camping
Photo by AleksandarNakic via iStock
As you can see, cold weather camping requires better preparation and more gear than summer camping adventures. And while the equipment discussed above are four of the most essential items for fall camping, they aren’t the only things you should consider investing in.
That said, here’s a short list of more excellent cold weather camping gear available at BTR Outfitters to help make your fall and winter trips more comfortable:
- Tuff Stuff 270° Compact Awning
- Roofnest Condor
- Expander Camping Chair
- Front Runner Drop Down Tailgate Table
- Tuff Stuff Halo 9.75” Solar Freestanding Light With Speaker
- Eezi-Awn K9 40L Water Container & Mount