The Mosquito Hill Nature Center, a 430-acre facility in New London, Wis., will host its annual winter tent campout Feb. 16-17.
The overnight event was designed for people looking for a different type of camping experience, according to the Sheboygan (Wis.) Press.
“We wanted people to know there was an alternative to busy, overcrowded campgrounds,” said Steve Petznick, winter camp director. “Participants don’t have to travel long distances, spend a lot of money or buy high-tech equipment to enjoy winter camping. Minimal enhancement of your existing camping gear will prepare anyone for a comfortable cold weather experience.”
Petznick also said the weekend is a great way to relieve cabin fever.
“We provide a semi-wilderness setting with all the amenities, including hearty home-cooked meals, staff-led activities, educational sessions, plus a variety of indoor and outdoor opportunities,” he said. “For most participants this event is a get-away from the mundane, a chance to celebrate the beauty of a season many people eschew.”
Following the check-in, an indoor orientation session will introduce participants to the nuts and bolts of winter camping. Proper dress, modifying camping gear for the cold, eating high energy foods and preventing water from freezing are just a few of the topics shared to prepare campers for the weekend.
After an outdoor lunch, campers will head into a scenic, sheltered area of the Wolf River bottomland forest to pitch their tents.
Winter camping, by nature, needs to be an active sport in order for participants to stay warm. Past activities have included snowshoe hikes, animal tracking, ski-jouring (dog-pulled cross country skiing), orienteering, ball games and relay races. Indoor presentations have featured speakers on ice climbing, trekking in Nepal and a Mt. Rainier expedition.
Four hot meals are provided.
According to the National Campers and Hikers Association, “You need not let cold weather conditions scare you away from the enjoyable experience of winter camping.” Petznick agrees. “January and February are prime months to see a side of the great outdoors other campers miss. We offer an opportunity to experience camping in the cold under the guidance of area experts.”