Outdoor camping in the PNW during the winter. (1 Viewer)

noothgrush

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Is it possible without freezing to death? I was thinking about heading up that way in January from south Texas. I just know from prior experience of being homeless in New England around that time of year that it's pretty damn miserable and to be avoided if possible. i know the PNW doesnt get as cold though, whats the consensus?
 
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noothgrush

noothgrush

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i'm originally from upstate NY, near the Canadian border. I just come down to south Texas during the winter. I planned on heading up to the PNW in march but i'm bored here early (i have spent a lot of time in the area). As for gear, i'm planning on bringing a tarp and rain jacket, gotta pick up a back pack shell too. I do have warm clothes left over from living up north as well.
 

SlankyLanky

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no sleeping bag or cook set or anything like that? a tarp and a rain jacket and warm clothes isnt very much as far as warmth goes. you might wanna bring a tent too, a tarp is great but when it rains 24/7 yer gonna be pretty bummed out.
 

Tude

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I'll have to have my friend chime in on here - forget what he goes by on STP - but he's wintered it in the dakotas and massachusetts. He spent last winter in the PA mountains - he normally just uses a tarp, but got a tent for last winter. hehe and broke down and bought a snow shovel as the amount of snow kept collapsing his camp.
 
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noothgrush

noothgrush

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no sleeping bag or cook set or anything like that? a tarp and a rain jacket and warm clothes isnt very much as far as warmth goes. you might wanna bring a tent too, a tarp is great but when it rains 24/7 yer gonna be pretty bummed out.
well yeah i have that stuff. i have been camping for like 2 months down here. i'm talking specific to the weather in that area. your going to need a tent, sleeping bag and cook pot where ever you camp.
 
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noothgrush

noothgrush

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i guess im just wondering what to expect is all. i just haven't been up in that area. i'm preparing for lots of grey days and rain. but growing up in the northeast thats fall and spring every year.
 
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Cold and rainy as youd expect in both those places. the oregon coast is cool, but for good camping you have to go inland. i "hiked" most of the oregon coast trail and there isnt much between towns. the trail is mostly hwy 101 and sand so we hitched alot.
I've never been to Olympic peninsula but plan on it. snow and freezing rain. if you can keep a fire going, stay dry and have food/water you should be fine. fires can be a bitch to get going though
 

benton

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I've spent a good amount of time in the PNW and my recommendation for a newbie to the area would be to go in the summer because there's no rain in most places then when the rainy season starts it won't be that cold yet then as it gets colder (and is also still raining - most winters it doesn't snow much) you will either acclimate or get the fuck out of dodge. I can deal with cold and I can deal with rain, but I'm not a fan of both of them at the same time.
 

Ringo

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I was born here, spent winters outdoors and honestly it’s not the worst. It CAN be pretty miserable at times tho, especially if your unprepared when storms come thru. You should be able to stay comfortable enough with pretty average winter gear, definitely have some waterproof layers. Expect a lot of rain, often times it’s light or only a drizzle and not bad to be out in. Other times you will need to shelter. Sleeping outside it rarely gets below 30 degrees, usually temps are something like 30-40 at night and 40-50 in the day November-March. It’s a humid,wet cold tho, and it really soaks in. Winter can be pretty comfortable if you have your situation figured out. One thing I will say against all this, is that actually staying on the move can be sucky and takes some planning. The weather changes constantly and unpredictably, and your going to end up stuck in the rain at some point or another.
 

BusGypsy

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Oh boy I'm rooting for you. But yeah, damn cold and wet. Wear layers, keep warm, take care. We had horrendous snow a couple weeks ago and it's been so cold especially at night. I don't envy people sleeping outside in it.
 

BardoBard

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The hardest part for me has been having to commute, if you're not working you can avoid the worst of the weather by waiting a few hours or taking the occasional day in (tents obviously a must)

Umbrella, water proof boots, lots of socks

Havent lit a fire in years, waste of time unless its below 0f


Some people seem to survive just sleeping on the sidewalk, seems pretty ineffecient and miserable though
 

BusGypsy

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The hardest part for me has been having to commute, if you're not working you can avoid the worst of the weather by waiting a few hours or taking the occasional day in (tents obviously a must)

Umbrella, water proof boots, lots of socks

Havent lit a fire in years, waste of time unless its below 0f


Some people seem to survive just sleeping on the sidewalk, seems pretty ineffecient and miserable though
Socks for sure. When I first moved up here I underestimated how freakin cold my feet could get! Big thick cushy long socks and lots of em! Wool is great too.
I also recommend wearing thermals or tights under your clothes.
 
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I've spent a lot of time out in the mountains in the PNW. The weather can be so drastic from one side of the passes to the other.
Even at night in summer it got pretty damn cold. Once winter hit, that was a different beast. I know on the PCT in May there was still a ton of snow.
I imagine the Olympic peninsula is going to be rainy and cold until AT LEAST may.
 

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