/ Keeping dry on long winter walk-ins
I always marvel at those who start the walk-in wearing a full shell outfit. Crazy. I'd melt in the first 500m wearing that. I walk-in wearing a wicking top and a windproof and feel toasty all the way. It's only when I have to stop to gear up that the cold hits.
My only tip would be to go at an appropriate pace. If you're at a busy crag you might be paranoid that every other team is going for your route. If you let that paranoia get the better of you, you can get sucked into a 'race' mentality that will only leave you tired and sweaty. The funny thing about the honey pot crags is that there are usually great routes in the coire- they might not be 3* but they will still be good.
Taking a change of tops and not walking too quickly is pretty much what Will Gadd recommends in his book. For popular areas you just have to leave (even) earlier.
Mind you, I expect he wasn't reconning with Scottish weather - if it's raining on the walk-in I don't think there's really any way to avoid getting wet one way or the other.
Be bold; start cold.
I'm rarely in more than a base layer. If you're not shivering when you leave the car, and taking about 30 minutes to warm up, then you're wearing too much. Man up, wear less.
Base layer, merino, windproof, pertex, if feeling flash Rab vapour rise stretch top.
This year I'll mainly be wearing a R1 hoody and pertex for the walk in, a lovely casual combination that can be mixed and matched with other items from your wardrobe to suit formal or informal occasions.
In normal weather, longjohns and baselayer for the walkin, if it's snowing then salopettes and windproof top go on and I go slower. When I layer up as I rack up I go the whole hog and put the belay jacket on too. This means I am warm even with a slightly damp back and it dries out quickly.
I go against convention, wear all of my clothes in the walk in, go fast in the walk in ( and early) to beat the crowds, gear up and stick a hat on to keep warm, then climb all day like that with hat on under my helmet
All my clothes are somewhat minimal to what others wear but it works for me, only emergency clothing is perhaps a goretex if it has not been worn on the walk in ( if it is dry and not blowing a hoolie )
Belay jackets just equal faff and time wasting
I generally start off with just a base layer and even in winter sometimes that's too much, but I find the helly hansen base layers are good at wicking sweat to the surface where it beads and evapuates. Quite amazing after a long run and the top is still reasonably dry bar a load of beaded sweat. Though if I recall correctly this only happens with my merio hellys.
Like others have said you need to start off COLD, you soon warm up, this is basic stuff you learn in scouts ;)
Sorry, but this is just bollocks. Maybe it's true for your metabolism, but there are plenty of us for who it isn't. If I walk up hill, I sweat. It can be -20 and I'll still sweat. You just need to learn to manage it. Saying "don't sweat" is like saying "only mugs allow themselves to have brown hair"; in fact it's sillier because you can dye your hair another colour if you really want.
Racing "in" usually means 'uphill'...I've sometimes wondered how fans of Buffalo and other heavy pile/pertex, manage without melting,on the winter approach? Fans seem really dedicated?!
> I've sometimes wondered how fans of Buffalo and other heavy pile/pertex, manage without melting,on the winter approach?
By taking it off?
Mostly I see folk walk in from the car wearing them,it does look rather bulky for an already busy winter sac?!
( I'm trying to convince myself I should get one!)
Agree somewhat with your sentiments. It's not as if I'm running on the walk-ins and I still sweat regardless. And I so quite.a bit of cardio so I don't think it's my fitness either.
To summarize, the main advice seems to be what I do already, change base layers at the bottom of the crag. It definitely works - but not always pleasant in Scottish weather.
I've found that just wearing a Vapour Rise means that you're pretty much dry when you reach the bottom of the route. Still find the changing into a base layer for the day a bit bracing. If it' not too windy then an R1 fleece next to skin does the same job.
Might not be pleasant, but the changing only lasts 3 minutes and the nice feeling after lasts for ages. So, it must be worthwhile to overcome your inner schweinehund.
> I'm rarely in more than a base layer. If you're not shivering when you leave the car, and taking about 30 minutes to warm up, then you're wearing too much. Man up, wear less.
I usually take this approach, but it has backfired when changing tops and putting on waterproofs has taken 45 minutes because we're so frozen (even after walking in at our fastest pace!)
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