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Headwear for nights at 0F
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spelt with a t
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
Headwear for nights at 0F on 11/30/2011 09:46:36 MST Print View

What do you all wear to bed on cold nights? I have a Gore windstopper beanie with a fleece lining and a fleece neck gaiter, but I'm wondering if I should be looking at a wool or down balaclava. I've been out moving in temps around 0F and below, but not yet spent a spent a night below 15F or so. Opinions appreciated.

Dave Marcus
(Djrez4) - F

Locale: Rocky Mountains
Re: Headwear for nights at 0F on 11/30/2011 09:53:28 MST Print View

Without knowing the rest of your setup, it's difficult to make a suggestion. Do you have a hooded sleeping bag or quilt? Tent? Tarp?

I'm in a single-wall tent with a hooded bag, merino base layer with hood, and down jacket, also with hood. I've been below zero in that setup.

Edited by Djrez4 on 11/30/2011 09:55:59 MST.

spelt with a t
(spelt) - F

Locale: SW/C PA
D'oh on 11/30/2011 09:58:43 MST Print View

Of course I would forget that.

Hammock with underquilt but no top cover, supplementary CCF pads for foot and head areas, 0F sleeping bag used as a quilt (so hood is in the wrong position to be of any use). My down jacket has no hood.

drowning in spam
(leaftye) - F

Locale: SoCal
Re: Headwear for nights at 0F on 11/30/2011 10:00:43 MST Print View

My coldest night yet was 17/18°F. I was using a Downworks down balaclava and my head was gloriously warm. I didn't even bother to cinch the face closed.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Headwear for nights at 0F on 11/30/2011 13:20:03 MST Print View

Katabatic make some nice hoods for really cold weather.
They have been reviewed.


Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Headwear for nights at 0F on 11/30/2011 13:32:35 MST Print View

Roger recommended to me a long time ago to get an insulated baclava and it has made a big difference. Mine is a little light on insulation and I sometimes need to add a Smart Wool baclava to the system. One of my next purchases is going to be a down version.

Ike Jutkowitz
(Ike) - M

Locale: Central Michigan
head wear on 11/30/2011 15:32:35 MST Print View

Usually just the hood of my down jacket. As temps drop below zero though, I like to use a myog buff made out of the sleeve of an old cap 2 shirt. If I feel like my cheeks are getting frosty, I can pull this up over my face and still breathe through it comfortably. I've never enjoyed the smothering feeling of a balaclava over my face, so this works better for me.

Mark Primack
(Bufa) - MLife

Locale: Cape Cod and Northern Newfoundland
Bicycle skullcap on 11/30/2011 15:43:38 MST Print View

I've been out quite a lot to -40F, though my winter mummy bags have hoods. I use an insulated biking skull cap from Nashbar for my head. Unlike most beanies, it is extra long in back and on the sides, so covers the neck and doesn't come off as I roll around at night. When its really cold, I wear it under my OR windproof balaclava during ascents.

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife
Headwear for nights at 0F on 11/30/2011 16:10:29 MST Print View

Nice thing about a fleece balaclava is you can pull it over your mouth to help warm the air that you inhale and remove at least some of the moisture from the air you exhale so you don't have ice from condensation around your sleeping bag hood's opening. For me, the draft collar on my Western Mountaineering bag means I can snug it up close to my neck and leave the sleeping bag hood looser for more ventilation of that exhaled air.

Admittedly it doesn't get that cold out here on the left coast! At zero or below, I might want to add a second layer, like my beautiful merino wool knit cap from Katharina Pierini!

Edited by hikinggranny on 11/30/2011 18:42:18 MST.

Mike M
(mtwarden) - MLife

Locale: Montana
0 on 11/30/2011 19:47:26 MST Print View

for 0-ish weather w/ a quilt, I'd highly recommend a down hood (I'd second taking a look at Katabatic), you'll still have a hat w/ you that you can add if need be

you don't want a cold head at 0 :)

Jim Colten
(jcolten) - M

Locale: MN
Re: 0 on 12/01/2011 06:21:29 MST Print View

you don't want a cold head at 0 :)

INDEED! And a typical prone resting person (at 1 MET) with a cold head will soon be chilled elsewhere even if the rest of the sleep system is adequate for the temps.

Chad Miller

Locale: Duluth, Minnesota
Re: Headwear for nights at 0F on 12/02/2011 10:52:42 MST Print View

Like others have said a good balaclava is essential to keeping warm when using a quilt. I myself have had good luck using a combination of a fleece had with tie-down ear flaps combined with a fleece balaclava.

Andy F
(AndyF) - M

Locale: Midwest/Midatlantic
Re: Headwear for nights at 0F on 12/02/2011 21:59:42 MST Print View

In my hooded bag, I've used an acrylic balaclava down to 15 F. The acrylic is looser fitting and seems to allow me to breathe through it easier. It was mostly to keep my fully exposed face warm. I plan to make a Climashield balaclava for colder temps.

Edited by AndyF on 12/02/2011 22:00:27 MST.