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Author Topic: staying warm in a treestand  (Read 4923 times)

Offline 724wd

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staying warm in a treestand
« on: November 22, 2010, 12:02:40 PM »
this will be my first experience hunting the late archery season.  i'll be in GMU 117, with plenty of cold temps.  i figure underarmour, pants, wool pants, leafy covering on the bottom half and for the upper, poly shirt, merino wool, fleece, wind stopper, leafy covering.  what about feet?  my boots are 400 gram thinsulate, but if you're not moving, they can get chilly.  head should be ok with facemask and watch cap.  i figure on some hand warmers and wool gloves for my fingies...

what do you guys do to stay warm?

Online JimmyHoffa

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2010, 12:08:29 PM »
If it isn't too much, you can carry in a different pair of boots---pac boots are what I'm thinking of.  You can get them rated down to something like -60.  Also can take a blanket and wrap it around your legs/feet.  I've done both.  The thing about the pac boots was to get them a few sizes too big, so I could move my feet around to keep them warm.

Offline Bean Counter

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #2 on: November 22, 2010, 12:10:00 PM »
Hunt in Arizona! Its 65-70 and sunny for the January rut hunt  :IBCOOL:

Consider some sock liners for your feet. That way you'll have insulation in your boots, nice wool socks, and a thin layer against your skin. Layers = trapped pockets of air = warm & happy hunter.
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Offline Kain

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #3 on: November 22, 2010, 12:10:41 PM »
Cold Weather Hunting Tip

Offline croix

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #4 on: November 22, 2010, 12:15:25 PM »
not sure how long you plan to sit, but in my experience 400 gram thins. boots won't make it 4-5 hours. i got a pair of those boot blankets from cabelas after last year. they are supposed to be good down to like -110 degrees. haven't tried them yet but i know i needed more than 400 grams last year. i also think that one of those umbrellas that attach to the tree might be a good idea when the wet snow is dumping. my wool got soaked through last year and things got miserable after that. those handwarmers are handy too.

have extra clothes on hand so that after the first day if you were too cold then you can add layers. last year in that same gmu i had my limit of layers on while still being able to move and after 5 hours i was DONE. i almost bought a heater body suit after that, but just bought heavier polar weight base layers instead. i'm not sure that i've stumbled on any magic combos yet, but i'm getting closer.

bottom line - 5 hours in 10 degrees with heavy snow falling gets VERY FRIGGIN COLD.
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Offline Skyvalhunter

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #5 on: November 22, 2010, 12:16:03 PM »
Best thing is to keep dry. I.E. if you hike to you tree stand location and are sweaty change into warm dry clothes. I found that the Cold Weather Under Armor to be too warm if hiking but they would be just right if sitting in a tree stand or glassing from a knob. Definitely layer your clothes.

Offline top pin1

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #6 on: November 22, 2010, 12:24:13 PM »
The Wambag or Heater body suit are your ticket but their $250 price range.

I bought a warmbag and will never go back.     http://www.thewarmbag.com/The_Warmbag_p/twb.htm

Trouble with wearing enough clothes to stay warm in 10 degree or less weather is how bulky it is and how sweaty you get hiking in any distance to your stand. My favorite stand is 600 yards uphill. Your soaked in sweat if you wear enough clothes to stay warm. Warmbag was the ticket. The last year before I bought the warm bag I was hiking in with a pack on. Just wearing long underwear, shorts and a thin top at -3 degrees when I got out of the truck. Changed into the warm stuff at the base of the tree but carrying that much crap to the tree got annoying and didnt allow you to take anything else.

That kidney wrap seriously works also. I've had that and used it for 5 years now. Amazing how warm blood keeps your warm.

They make toe heaters. Just like the hand warmers but their thin and have sticky on them to stick to your socks. THEY WORK. Costco sells them by the box. They last a good solid 6+ hours and will keep your whole foot warm.

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Offline Sumpnneedskillin

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #7 on: November 22, 2010, 12:37:44 PM »
I have 1200 gram boots that are nice.  I like the heated insoles better that the toe heaters.  The stick on heat pads for your back are nice right about kidney level.  I usually put those in my boots and on my back at the base of my tree.  I also have a small travel thermos.  Holds about 12 oz.  I'd make a super hot batch of spiced cider and have cup of that with a granola bar for a snack mid morning when you starting to get cold and think about heading back to the nice warm truck.  The other I did was I had a single burner stove and a coffee pot in the truck.  When I got back I'd make a cup of something hot to help warm back up.

Biggest problem I found was finding a glove that kept my hand warm but allowed me to wear and use my release.  I'd put a hot hands in my gloves and in my pockets and keep my hand in my pocket until something came along.
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Offline DoubleJ

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #8 on: November 22, 2010, 12:38:53 PM »
Being a bit overweight has worked for me  :dunno:
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Offline 724wd

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #9 on: November 22, 2010, 01:18:57 PM »
Being a bit overweight has worked for me  :dunno:

i suppose i have some of that covered!   :chuckle:  only worth 225 lbs though... 

luckily my stand is within 200 yards of the house and driveway (i hunt 160 acres of private land) and it's nice and level, so no hiking concerns.  i have a ladder stand up over a little clearing and travel route. 

thanks for all your ideas!  i'll look into your suggestions, but i think my wife would kill me over a warm bag or heater body suit!   :o  the kidney heater sounds like a great idea!

Offline adam.WI

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #10 on: November 22, 2010, 01:23:48 PM »
Buy some pack boots and you should be good. I grew up in the cold and it takes less than you think if you have decent gear. I would recommend 1200 gram boots and keep your head and neck warm. If your good there everything else will follow

Offline Machias

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #11 on: November 22, 2010, 01:27:38 PM »
I have LIVED in treestands before in pretty frigid weather. Hour before sunup to a half hour after sundown in single digit weather with some stiff winds.  Your toes will be rock solid...or at least feel that way with 400 gr.  If you can find a good pair of the Air Force Mickey Mouse boots, they are terrible for hiking, but one of the best treestand boots around.  Otherwise I would get the boot blankets.  Best glove is a waterproof glo-mitt.  You can put the hand warmer in the mitt part and easily slip your fingers out to shoot.  I have bowhunted with these alot and they are the warmest gloves around for that purpose.  Make sure you cover your head and neck and you'll be good to go.  Don't forget the safety harness....please!!

Offline Dadbear

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #12 on: November 22, 2010, 01:32:40 PM »
Include a head/neck gaiter in your gear. Keeping the cold  off  your neck and water from running down your shirt is one of the keys for me. 

Offline Button Nubbs

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #13 on: November 22, 2010, 01:52:08 PM »
Take the little disposable heater packets and put them under your gloves on the bottom side of your wrist. it works magic when I'm steelhead fishing with cold wet hands when its in the teens outside. I'm sure you could do it on your ankles also.
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Offline danrabe

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #14 on: November 22, 2010, 02:40:16 PM »
It may sound fairly silly, but it works great for me, especially in the cold, wet areas like WA.  Get a pair of stockingfoot 5mm Neoprene Chest waders.  Put full long underwear underneath as well as polar fleece pants and good wool socks, a pair of Sorrell boots will work as a "wading" boot.  It gives you a nice, thick, flexible, waterproof, quiet layer.  It'll keep your feet warm all day long, even if you are standing in 35 degree water for 6 hours.

Just carry them and a pair of boots that will fit loosely over them in a small pack and once you get to your stand, put them on, and climb on up.  Always works great for me!

Offline Austrian Hunter

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #15 on: November 22, 2010, 02:55:24 PM »
Good thread,
For me it seems I can never put on enough layers, I start with Underamor Heat Gear, than over that goes my Underamor cold gear, some fleece pants and than my regular camo pants, two fleece shirts and fleece pullover and than my regular camo jacket.  I use feet warmers and hand warmers the disposable kind, I also have the boot cover but have not used them, I will this year but they are huge and a pain in the butt to carry in.  I have to hike 20-30 minuted to my stand and I sit 20 min before sun light until dark.  For me the biggest challenge is the hike in and not start to sweat, but I don;t like to carry all that stuff with me either, allways a challenge and hopefully it will pay off.  Gool luck, and don;t freeze to death.  I'm in unit 117 starting on the 29th and it will be cold :IBCOOL:

Offline Snapshot

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #16 on: November 22, 2010, 02:59:25 PM »
For the late hunt in the northeast (minus 24 degree wind chill expected there tonight!)  I'll wear 2000 gram Thinsulate rubber boots, sock liner, wool sock, expedition weight polypro underwear, wool shirt, wool vest, wool sweater, heavy wool pants over light wool pants, wool stocking hat under a fleece balaclava, fleece vest, wool scarf, wool gloves under insulated gloves with the flip-back mit (silence those f#*@ing magnets!), and an insulated coat. A chemical toe or hand warmer will be pasted on the inside of each thigh (between the wool layers, not against the skin) to warm the meat around the femoral arteries. Then Ill sit/stand like a schoolgirl with my knees tight together and be toasty warm in -5 degrees for as long it takes for my hunting partners to get cold. I am hoping it wont be above 32 degrees until after the season closes. IF it does warm up Ill strip layers and add a waterproof outer layer, but I find that it gets harder to regulate temperature with that stuff on.
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Online JimmyHoffa

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #17 on: November 22, 2010, 03:00:18 PM »
How much and what kind of gear are you willing to leave at the treestand?  So you don't have to haul it each time?  I will leave a few things like hatchet/saw/rope maybe a few other things.  Leave in a weather proof container of some sort.

Offline Snapshot

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #18 on: November 22, 2010, 03:01:39 PM »
How much and what kind of gear are you willing to leave at the treestand?
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I'd just like to remind everybody that it's about the hunting, not just the killing. In other words, it's about the total experience, the sport itself and the challenge involved. Bowhunting, done right, is a justifiable and honorable pursuit. Done for the wrong reasons, simply chalking up kills and seeking personal glory, it's taking away rather than giving back to a principled way of life that has to be experienced to be understood. G.StCharles

Offline DBHAWTHORNE

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #19 on: November 22, 2010, 05:07:41 PM »
 :yeah:
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Offline huntnnw

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #20 on: November 22, 2010, 08:10:46 PM »
I purchased some Browning 1200 gr thinsulate boots in wide adnd also one size to big..so I can put on lots of socks if needed.one of the better things I have bought was a fleece face mask that had pockets inside of it for handwarmers..this is a great item to have works great.

Offline 724wd

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #21 on: November 22, 2010, 09:55:12 PM »
damn, you guys are starting to scare me!   :yike:  maybe i should just sit in the living room of the landowners house with the tv on and wait for the deer to walk through the yard!  :chuckle: 

Offline DBHAWTHORNE

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #22 on: November 22, 2010, 09:58:47 PM »
damn, you guys are starting to scare me!   :yike:  maybe i should just sit in the living room of the landowners house with the tv on and wait for the deer to walk through the yard!  :chuckle: 

haha...you will definitely want some different boots. The Mickey Mouse/Bunny Boots mentioned before are best. I also use Rocky Boots 1400 gram thinsulate deer stalkers with those hot hand heat insoles and toe warmers. I bought them 2 sizes too big. I wear a light wicking sock and a heavy sock and there is still plenty of dead air space. My biggest mistake used to be getting my normal size boots and wearing a couple pair of socks. There was no dead air space and it slightly restricted my circulation making my feet get cold faster.
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Offline huntnnw

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #23 on: November 22, 2010, 10:44:38 PM »
yep.. too tight and packed in= cold feet

Offline ICEMAN

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Re: staying warm in a treestand
« Reply #24 on: November 23, 2010, 05:36:28 AM »
I have overnight backcounty snow camped for many years, here are a few tips;


If your hands are cold, you do not have enough insulation around your core. Add layers to the midsection. Cold core body temps cause your body to go into survival mode. Your core cools only one or two degrees and your body starts reducing blood flow to your extremeties, hands, feet etc.... Add a down vest or parka to your attire...

Loose boots. Don't be a cheapskate and try to make other boots work for extreme cold conditions. There is a reason that 1200 gram boots are manufactured. Buy large enough for a loose fit over 2 layers of socks.

Proper hydration. I know you bow guys hate peeing from your treestand....but if you are not properly hydrated, you will get cold. Something about fluid volume in the blood and your bodies ability to metabolize nutrients....  When it is really cold out, it is really dry out too. Your body will attempt to keep your skin at the proper humidity level in the cold, and you will lose fluids as fast as you would when you sweat.  So, between normal respiration and your natural loss thru the skin..... you figure it out, you are dehydrated. Drink warm  diluted Gatorade or warm tang. Caffeine is a no no... as it causes constriction in your veins and reduces blood flow. Reduced blood flow = reduced heat to your toes and fingers...

Eat. Eat foods like cheese or salami, things high in milk fats or vegetable fats, they digest slower and help to keep energy (metabolism) up... Pasta noodles in some form are good too. 

Insulate your body where you are compressing layers.... IE: sit on a foam pad. Place a foam pad against the tree. When you sit, you compress your insulation and loose it's insulative value.

Cut the wind, Try to get a way to block wind. When snowshoeing at camp, we dig in deep into the snow to get out of the wind.... In a tree?  Quality windblocking clothing?

Good luck!
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