Loose, comfortable layers are far better than single, bulky garments, as each layer you add traps warm air close to your body. We recommend wearing a base layer (silk, polypropylene, etc.) closest to the skin, a second layer (warm sweater or fleece), and an outer layer that is water and wind repellent (NHA will provide down parkas and boots for you to use). This will keep you toasty if outside temperatures are cold, and you can always shed layers if you grow too warm.
Wool and silk are superior to cotton because they trap warm air and stay dry. Many synthetic fabrics—polar fleece in particular—are also good for keeping you warm and dry.
It is important to note that rain is a possibility both in Winnipeg and Churchill, especially in October. Please keep this in mind when deciding what to pack.
PARKA & BOOTS
Fall in Churchill can be very cold, and we want you to be prepared for the possibility of frigid temperatures. We will provide a down winter parka and a pair of boots (to be worn with socks only, not over your shoes) to all travelers for use while in Churchill, which you will pick up and return in Winnipeg. You may be able to pick your gear up the afternoon of your arrival. The gear room is typically open from 2 pm to 6 pm, and your shuttle driver will be able to confirm gear distribution schedule upon your arrival. However, if you require an especially large or small size of either, please call our office to find out if we can accommodate you with our supply. There is no extra charge for the use of our boots and parkas.
Typically boots and parkas are not necessary for the Extra Day program in Winnipeg, however, if the weather warrants it, and you would like to use Nathab’s boots and parka on that day, please let a staff member know.
Should you wish to bring your own gear, the parka should be warm and roomy enough to accommodate several layers underneath. Your boots should be warm, water-repellent or waterproof (remember, you may be walking in cold, snowy, or rainy conditions), and have slip-resistant tread.
We highly recommend removing your boot liners (if possible) in the evenings to let them dry overnight, even if they do not feel wet. Your feet often sweat during the day, and if the liners are not dried properly, they may make your feet cold when you put your boots on again.
GLOVES, HAT & SCARF/NECK GAITER
Body heat is most likely to be lost from the hands and feet. For maximum warmth, we recommend packing two pairs of gloves to protect your hands: thin glove liners and warm outer gloves/mittens (mittens are often warmer than gloves). Glove liners are great as you can take your heavy gloves/mittens off to take pictures, but still protect your hands from the cold. It may not be necessary, but you may want to pack a second set of gloves or mittens in case the first pair gets wet.
Also pack warm protection for your head, face, and neck. Be sure your hat covers your ears and that you can protect your face sufficiently if there is a cold wind blowing.
Layering works well for the legs, too. Long underwear underneath an outer pair of pants should be sufficient. If you are on the Ultimate Churchill adventure, or if you wish to participate in the sled dog activity, you should bring at least one pair of water-resistant pants so you stay dry if you come in contact with snow.
The rule of layers holds true for your feet as well. For maximum warmth, wear thin sock liners made of wicking fabrics, such as silk or polypropylene, underneath warm socks. Bring several pairs so they have time to dry completely between uses. Also bring several pairs of thick socks made of wool or warm synthetic material (not cotton) to wear with the boots we will loan you to create the best fit possible.
Garments that “breathe” will help to keep you warm and dry. Wool and fleece are great materials that trap heat against the body.
Silk or polypropylene long underwear can be great for adding warmth without bulk. Long underwear is available in a variety of weights, which allows you to choose the version that best suits your personal thermostat. Turtlenecks are also great for layering because they provide added warmth for your neck.