Saturday, February 7, 2015

Which is more normal?

Last November through January one of my main concerns was keeping warm. There was a period when I wore high tech underwear, a fleece pullover, down vest, jacket, knit cap, gloves and heavy wool socks. Yet my toes, fingers and ears were still cold. There was a period when I used a down sleeping bag along with my down quilt—while wearing the high tech underwear, shirt, pants, wool socks and knit cap to bed. The temperatures were low and the wind blew constantly.

Friday, February 6, 2015

This winter is totally different. There have been a few times I pulled on a sweatshirt in the early morning or late evening. Otherwise, the winter wear hasn't been out of its storage bid. I've rarely even worn socks, and when I do, it's for cushioning, not warmth. The sleeping bag has also stayed packed away. And I usually sleep just in my underwear.

It's not like the geography was radically different. I spent both winters in southwest Arizona, in the Parker-Quartzsite-Yuma corridor. The weather has been the only difference.

So, I wonder, which winter is more typical? Oldtimers say, "Oh yeah, it usually gets colder. There was a winter, two, three years ago, where it was in the teens. But that was extreme." Okay, so has this winter been an anomaly, or is it going to be the new normal? I know there are serious down sides to warmer winters (sorry, you folks who've been hit with blizzards), but from a purely selfish point of view, it sure makes full time camping more pleasant.

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