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From cold to hot!

Travel Forums Travel Gear From cold to hot!

1. Posted by liekesys (Budding Member 17 posts) 9y

Hello,
I'm going to travel to Russia the 28th of february.
From there we are travelling with the train to Beijing in China.
There are very cold areas (st.petersburg, Moscow, irkutsk, Mongolia)
What kind of stuff do i really need there? What is really important to bring with me?

From China we are travelling to the south: Tibet and after that India. There it's very hot.
What should I bring in the beginning of my travel in my backpack? And should I bring things for in the hot countries? I afraid I will bring too much stuff with me.
Advice would be great!

2. Posted by Dezafinado (Respected Member 177 posts) 9y

With modern technical clothing, you won't need to carry much weight. Wilderness backpackers usually have 4 types of layers:

1. Base layer
2. Regular clothes or technical shirt/pants
3. Mid layer (fleece, soft shell, insulated shell)
4. Outer shell (water/wind-proof shell)

In winter temperatures, you'll need 3 or 4 layers. And as you travel to warmer regions, dress in fewer layers. For example, I wear Patagonia Capilene long sleeve shirt and long underwear as my base layer. On top of that I have a regular nylon/polyester hiking pants and long-sleeve shirt. My mid layer is usually a Mountain Hardwear windproof fleece jacket or vest. In extreme cold, a sub-zero down jacket will insulate you well w/o being heavy or bulky. My outer shell consists of Marmot Precip rain pants and jacket. I only wear them when it's raining or it's really cold and windy. They keep my body heat from escaping. There're soft-shell jackets that combine 3 functions in one - fleece layer for warmth, windproof layer and a water-resistant/waterproof layer on the outside. They're usually quite expensive... $260-$400.

In addition, you'll need a windproof fleece hat & gloves. Always always keep your head warm! Your shoes/boots should have a waterproof material like Gore-tex or eVent for walking on snow and water.

As you go to warmer climate, buy summer clothes locally. It's cheaper too.

Good luck

[ Edit: Edited on Jan 9, 2007, at 10:07 AM by Dezafinado ]

3. Posted by steph' (Budding Member 8 posts) 9y

ooh for very hot countries in Asia you can survive on flipflops and your runners. and i agree, you can buy summer clothing when you get to the hot areas. remember to also drink lots of water! the humidity will seem daunting but you'll get used to it :)

have fun!

4. Posted by t_maia (Travel Guru 3289 posts) 9y

Having just come back from Moscow, I was angry with myself that I bought a new hat and gloves in Germany in preparation for my trip. I could have gotten them for half the price from one of the street stalls in Moscow or St. Petes's.

The advice Dezafinado gave you is really good. But check the temperature before you leave, I ended up wearing nothing but a long sleeved cotton t-shirt under my regular winter jacket during the day. After sunset when the temperature dropped I got out a thin fleece west to keep me warm, but often I needed neither gloves nor hat. Instead of the more normal -10 degrees C it was between -3 and 7 degrees C. I had overpacked on warm clothes and was often hot.

Another tip: Russian trains are absolutely overheated. Make sure you have warm flannel pj's for hostel stays as well as very light, nonrevealing clothing to wear on the night trains, especially if you are travelling platzkartny.

Also take the oldest clothes possible so that you can throw them away once you get to warmer places. Less luggage to carry around. If you don't have it, don't bother with buying any fancy wind-and-water-proof gear. Lots of Russians get by without it every day. I wore cotton leggings and jeans and if the temperature had gotten lower I would have simply added yet another pair of cotton leggings. (I paid 10 EUR for a pack with 2 pairs.) Rain pants and jacket can easily and cheaply be gotten in a sports or department store carrying biking gear. My fleece vest was definitely to bulky and took up more in my daypack than I would have liked, but I had gotten it from C&A and paid 9 EUR for it, so it was ok.

I suppose it all depends upon your style of travel - will you simply follow the railway lines or make expeditions into the wilderness too?