Reader Responses

In response to our posting on Winter Camping with Your Dog Judy writes:  “I’ve found that a large dollop of Bag Balm applied to the pads and feet of my dog help to insulate against the cold and prevent snow and ice from clumping up in the fur.

In response to 10 Winter Camping Rules to Live By Greg states:
I’m afraid you are mistaken about heat being lost evenly throughout the body. Try the following experiments, and I believe you will soon change your tune.

  1. In really cold weather, go outside totally bundled up, but without hat. Stand around and clock the time until you start shivering and can’t stand it any more. Then wait 24 hours and try the same thing, but this time with only an arm exposed. An arm has more surface area than your head, but you will not freeze to death nearly as fast with an exposed arm as you will with an exposed head.
  2. When it’s 95 degrees outside, turn your ac off at home for a day. When you are absolutely miserable, go take a cool shower. but don’t put your head under the shower head right off. After half a minute, or a minute, of water cascading over your body, stick your head under the shower head and let the water run over your head, and see how quickly you cool off. You will cool off so fast it will make your head spin, and shortly you will shiver and have to get out. NOTHING will cool you faster than cool water running (or cool air) over your head when you are really hot. You will also cool faster with ac blowing on your head than on your chest, or any other body part.
  3. Common sense time: Nobody ever froze to death due to a lack of gloves, even though your hands have a large surface area.

1 comment to Reader Responses

  • Chris

    Just to add my $0.02 to the second response:

    I support the theory that heat is lost evenly throughout the body (mostly).

    I just can’t get my head around the idea (ha ha) that heat is lost from the head to a much greater degree than any other part of the body. After all, it’s got a lower surface area to volume ratio (being broadly spherical) and for most people (not me any longer, unfortunately!) it’s covered in hair…

    So, despite it being a popular old wives’ tale, I think it is up to those who believe that heat-loss occurs to a greater degree through the head to prove their point by going and standing in the snow only wearing a hat. If the head really is that significant then they should last quite a while…

    Any takers? :-)