Rate the Cold Quotient

I never realized why everyone made such a big deal of the wind chill factor. In moderate winter area, I pretty much found that cold-is-cold, and there’s not much difference between 15F or 2F with the wind chill.

Here in the Adirondacks, it’s different.

We had -24F last week, but no wind. Didn’t bother me a bit. Today, we had a mere -2F, but with some pretty rough wind. And it was cold. In this kind of cold, you don’t use adjectives like the quaint and charming, “Brrrrrrr! It’s cold!” No, my descriptives this morning tended toward things like,”&!@#$&#$! OW! It is SO @#!@#@&#$ COLD!”

I think I am holding up pretty well though. We’ll see what you think. I’m interested to see how my Cold Quotient compares to others. I have to qualify this with the fact that I, in fact, love the cold. Anyhow. Here’s the deets …

I am taking care of a neighbor’s two properties, so I had two long drives and a roof to clear off this morning. Temp was -2F, with a windchill of maybe -20F. (I’m guessing.) I was out for three hours. I was wearing a t-shirt, a flannel shirt, a lined flannel jacket with a hood, regular old jeans, snow boots, cotton socks, and light gloves. I lasted three hours. When my toes started hurting enough that I was noticing it, I went inside. Interesting to find that a solid chunk of ice had formed on my moustache and goatee! That was a first.

So, rate away, dear readers. Am I suited for the North?

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16 Comments

Filed under adirondacks

16 responses to “Rate the Cold Quotient

  1. My dear Small Pines,… no cotton,…first rule. Wear wool, fleece,… and layer it all. Insulated boots with wool socks or thinsulate,… … Warm hat as a lot of body heat is lost through your head. Wear a fleece face mask if you can. Scarf,… just absolutely not cotton. Invest in some snow pants. Grade for this…. D- (F is for frostbite). But,…YES you are suited for the North because you ask questions and are willing to listen to those who make sense. πŸ™‚ Luvya!

  2. rekab

    You need a good pair of wool pants with heavy long johns and a pair of Sorrel boots.

    Avoid cotton at all for winter layers; it does not retain any warmth qualities when wet. Get a good set of moderate weight synthetic long underwear.

    Waiting until you start to feel pain in your toes is not a good idea; some level of frostbite had probably set in already.

  3. Message received! I’m going to grab a pair or two of thermal or wool socks tonight, and I can wear some flannel pants under my jeans until I can get to P’burgh. And I’ll wear my parka instead of flannel jacket next time. Can’t do the hat (hate hats), but I promise to pull my parka hood tight. =)

  4. you’re living up in the Adirondacks wearing those skimpy clothes? you must be young because the older you get the colder you get. get some lined work clothes. Carhartt Men’s Duck Zip-to-Thigh Bib Overall/Quilt Lined

  5. My flannel jacket actually is pretty tough – maybe more of a coat. It’s a Carhartt quilt-lined and all. And I have my polar parka. I am definitely shy in the socks-and-drawers department though.

  6. Jean

    wool wool wool! πŸ™‚

  7. Now that is darn cold.

    I have to say it’s been (insert expletive here) cold here in New Jersey today, all because of that rotten wind chill factor! It makes all the difference.

    We’re heading up your way – staying in Schroon Lake for New Year’s (since we can’t stay in our own cabin in the winter we’ll be renting a cabin for 3 nights). Couldn’t stay away! I’m hoping the temperatures will be relatively balmy compared to what you’ve been experiencing!

  8. Marie (adktricollie)

    Living here in the daks for the 2nd winter, traveled back & forth for 5 yrs to and from our home, vacationed in the daks for 20 years, including winter. Spent our honeymoon in Wilmington in the dead of winter with a blizzard. What’s required: Layers, Layers, Layers! Good snow pants, thin & heavier gloves worn together, polartec for warm. good thermal underwear, socks in layers, good Sorrels or Kamiks on the feet, face mask & of course a good jacket with a hood & a really good hat.

    It took us several years & trial & error to to accquire the good stuff but worth every penny. How much for good thermals? They want that much for those socks? Now that we have them we know why.

  9. You said it, Marie. This is going to be a “one expensive piece at a time” proposition.

  10. Kat

    I second the hat advice…as Cedar said, you lose a lot of heat through your head. I’m not fond of hats either, but when there’s a wind I wear one anyway. It makes all the difference.

    And thinsulate/Goretex anything is worth the price in my book.

  11. I’m reading and learning here too. In West Virginia we don’t have temps like that very often. I do recall delivering mail when it was -18; I wore long johns, wool sweater and down vest; wool toboggan hat; long johns and jeans, wool socks layered with other (probably cotton socks). I was in a truck, though, with the windows down all day but I had some heat. I am glad to read the advice you’re getting, and thinking about how to beef up my wardrobe. Ya never know when you might need it!

  12. Not much to add here except to consider the sweat-factor.

    If you plan on exertion which may create internal heat, wicking and breathable materials are essential. My rule-of-thumb – if you feel warm before the work, you’re overdressed.

  13. Derek

    It is perfectly warm to layer with cotton as long as it is not your first or second layer since as stated, when wet with perspiration it does little to keep you warm. To exclaim “NO COTTON” is nonsense.

  14. bhg

    EMS has various weights long underwear – depending upon your threshhold. Then there are fleece-lined windbreaking materials (pants and pullover) and then down ski jacket and lined ski pants that also break the wind

    Hat =- wear the aviator style with a headband underneath.

    Gloves – handwarmers inside windbreaking fleece lined mittins with a separate liner

    Socks-they say one good pair – I wear a liner pair under ski socks

    Boots – the thickets, lined waterproof with toe or foot warmers

    Believe it or not – you’re still very mobile and can actually enjoy the cold!

  15. Hat!! Hat!!! HAT!!!!! Of course the story that you lose most of your body heat through your head has been proved wrong, but you ARE warmer with a hat and you need one that will cover your ears. I don’t go out much in the cold (wimp that I am) but even going to town, I have a hat — dressy, if possible — on my head. Not liking hats and freezing your brain is not an option. And this is a GRANDMA speaking, so listen well. HATSSSSSSS!!!

  16. PS … It IS colder when the wind blows. It goes right through you. If you will notice my last blog, my winter-loving, bundled-up (with a HAT) son-in-law did not do much snowmobiling because the wind was blowing, slightly, but the wind produced by the machine made it impossible to stay out long on said machine.

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