How cold is it?

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Trip Reports (11)

Re: How cold is it?

Post by JROSKA »

Scott P wrote: Sat Feb 04, 2023 9:46 pm
I respectfully disagree, or at least my experience is different. Once it starts dropping way below zero, it seems the effect or misery level is exponential. At our old house the coldest we got was -48 (actual temp, not wind chill) and zero would feel really warm after that. Even -10 would feel pleasantly warm after it drops into the -40s.

I find keeping warm to be very easy at zero (in fact when I'm working hard breaking trail I even sweat), but not when it's way below zero.
I am going to concur with this. I went to college at University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire from 1989-1992 and I know there were a few days where the straight air temperature was 30-35 below zero as I walked to class early in the morning. There was one time I walked across the infamous campus bridge, and the NW wind was ripping down the Chippewa River at 20-25 mph.

If it’s zero or even 5 below and the wind isn’t too bad, I can go for a quick jog wearing shorts, and not a lot of urgency. Zero doesn’t feel cold to me if I’m moving around.

But I agree that it gets more severe exponentially. In those few times I’ve been out in 30 below, I was fully layered and geared up with absolutely nothing exposed. And still I remember that general feeling in each instance that if something was exposed (hands, feet, ears) there’d not be a lot of time before tissue starts freezing.

Even at a younger age, 30-35 below always felt intense, and a bit beyond what humans are meant to survive in. Even geared up, I was always glad to not have to be out for more than 20 minutes or so in that type of cold.
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