How do you stay warm and dry when you are shooting in cold weather?
Shooting in cold weather can be challenging – but there’s nothing quite like the beauty of snow. It changes the look of the landscape profoundly. When we are getting ready to shoot in cold weather, we make sure we’re ready for it. We carry chemical heat packs in our pockets to keep our hands warm – but for another reason as well. In between shots, we’ll tuck our cameras inside our jackets to keep the battery warm… which helps increase battery life. We know from experience that cold batteries drain quickly, so the longer we can keep them warm, the more time we can spend shooting. Some people like to tuck warmers into their boots as well – though I find that they don’t work as well in such cramped spaces. Make sure your boots will keep your feet warm and dry, and keep moving to stay warm.
We also wear waterproof and windproof gloves – and we prefer the ones with a mitten flap. We fold the flap back so that we can use our fingers to adjust the controls on our cameras. I recommend wearing a thinner pair of “glove liners” underneath. And try tucking an extra chemical warmer into the mitten flap so your fingers stay warm.
I almost feel silly suggesting that you wear a warm hat, since I think it’s obvious… but on the other hand, I see people out there all the time without one. They are the ones shivering in the wind, complaining about the cold despite their heavy parka. Put a hat on! Sheesh! :) I like to have a hood as well, since it keeps the back of my neck warm and gives me an extra layer of protection if I need it.
The trick to staying warm is to keep your core temperature up. If your center (and your head) are warm, your extremities will stay warm longer. Use a waterproof outer layer to keep dry if the conditions are wet.