Why You Should Go Winter Camping

In this video from Heliconia Productions, adventurer Eric Hanson examines the relationship between unrelenting cold and the euphoric feelings of camping in winter.

Filed To: CampingNature

Video Transcript

I think the wilderness, in general, has the ability to simplify life.

And then if you factor in the conditions that happen in winter, everything gets reduced to its most simple state.

You're not thinking about all of the other things in your day-to-day life.

It goes down to: What is the most elemental thing necessary? And these are the tasks that you need to focus on.

It can be painful. It can be uncomfortably cold.

You get so reduced to that need to feel warmth and then to actually build a fire and have that start to, like, move through you—it is a deeply moving experience.

There's this greater sense of appreciation, of everything.

Most people don't want to experience the discomfort, but what they're doing is ruling out that they're going to experience the other extreme, which is the joy and the elation and the peace and the beauty that comes with it.

It does feel like the landscape is resting, the earth is in a different state of being.

It's very quiet. You don't almost hear any birds or hear any wildlife or almost hear anything other than the sound of maybe the wind or the river.

You get to participate in that sense of stillness and peace and tranquility.

Wilderness is such a visceral experience, and it taps into our most core selves. The extremes of winter help even drive that further.

It doesn't have to be packing in 15 miles. What makes it great is simply just being outside.

When you're leaving the wilderness and you're about to come back, you bring something with you.

I think ultimately, why I do these things and push myself is to find the best version of me.