Cold feet sitting on stand thermacell insoles?


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V-fib
October 24, 2013, 12:47 AM
hey there,

With crossbow hunting on now and soon rifle hunting I sit on stand often for many hours and my feet get pretty cold.

I do have idopathic peripherial neuorpathy which makes my feet extremely cold.

I have boots with 2000 grams thinsulate, I've used wool socks, chemical foot warmers, electric socks, and even overboots and when sitting and even in a enclosed blind my feet get cold.

Has anyone ever used the Thermacell Heated Insoles? They ain't cheap but with 500 recharges they might last quite a while.

let me know how they worked for you.

here's a review: http://www.ammoland.com/2013/04/thermacell-heated-insoles/#axzz2ibc3yqeJ

Thanks for your time,

V-fib

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jmr40
October 24, 2013, 11:14 PM
You need a warmer hat.

Seriously. Your body regulates its temperature by using your head, hands and feet. It will keep the brain and internal organs warm even if it has to sacrafice the feet and hands. If you are losing too much heat from your head, or body's core your body redirects blood flow away from your feet in order to keep the other parts warm and functioning properly. No boot in the world is going to keep you feet warm until you find a way to trap the heat escaping from your head, neck and core.

If you have excess heat your body sends extra blood flow to your feet and hands in order to cool its self down.

ColtPythonElite
October 24, 2013, 11:18 PM
Are you walking in and getting sweaty feet ? That will freeze your feet.

V-fib
October 25, 2013, 04:04 AM
jmr40, got a very warm hat. part of the deal with the idopathic peripherial neuorpathy is cold extremities. for instance, my left index finger gets extremly cold (just that finger) but I have a muff I keep my hand in during hunting which keeps it warm and got some super insulated snowmobile mittens when I plow snow on my tractor.

coltpythonelite, Don't have to hike very far to my blinds since I hunt on my own property, but i noticed that one of the problems with the chemical footwarmers was that they make your feet sweaty and only last a few hours in my boots:banghead:

the electric socks were a joke, I tried to get my money back from the company but all they did was send me another pair which i didn't even use so I'm out $25 bucks.:cuss:

thanks for your input

v-fib

98Redline
October 29, 2013, 03:27 PM
I have heard some good things about those heater body suits. Sort of looks like a "Snuggie" for hunting but keeps you warm like wearing a sleeping bag.

joustin
October 29, 2013, 07:31 PM
Your hands and feet regulate your temp more than your head. You can get away with a lightweight but effective hat. The amount of heat lost from your head is minimal and the theory has been debunked several times. Regardless Columbia has some gloves with Omni-Heat, I have one of their beanies and it is warmer than anything that is much heavier than the Columbia hat.

Fremmer
October 29, 2013, 08:09 PM
How about an enclosed stand with a small propane heater? It'll keep most of the wind outside and help you stay warm.

JTMcC
October 29, 2013, 10:24 PM
Military surplus Mickey Mouse boots or Bunny Boots.
They're inexpensive, they are bulky and they are warm in -60 degree weather.

J

V-fib
October 30, 2013, 01:51 AM
thanks for all the input,

When I'm in my condo not too bad since I have a old sleeping bag i cover myself up and have some boot blankets.

My main prob is when I sit out directly in the elements/snow thats when my feet get the coldest.

I've used the toe warmers but they don't last very long. I'm balkin at the $100 price of the thermocells.

Anybody use the full insole chemical warmers? Do they last long?

V-fib

frankenstein406
October 30, 2013, 02:45 AM
My favorite "hat" is actually a helmet liner the army uses. I also wear a one piece carhart style suit. The suit and helmet liner seem to make the biggest difference.

Even going flat out on my atv on the river my feet stay warm.

quartermaster
October 30, 2013, 09:22 PM
V-fib, I have the same problem. My feet are numb to due diabetes, which has occurred in the past 5 years. When they get cold, they stay cold for a long time even after coming inside. I have tried everything from electric socks to toe warmers in boots. I have always had a problem with my feet sweating which leads to cold feet. It used to work decent for me to bring an extra pair of socks to change into upon arriving at my stand, but I believe as you get a bit older your dwindling circulation doesn't help the situation.

I have found that wearing a thin pair of cotton socks under a heavier wool pair all housed in a decent pair of boots (not too heavy) gives me a bit more time in the woods, but not nearly as much as I would like.

I guess we just grin and bear it, Worse things could happen.

I'm going to keep tabs on this thread. Maybe someone will chime in with something that will help us. That would be nice.

Tiny in Ohio
October 31, 2013, 12:19 AM
One thing I have done in the past in cold weather is to wear thin silk socks, place a baggie over my toes, then a pair of thick wool socks. The silk will wick away any moisture. The baggies hold the heat from your toes. And the wool will keep you warm. It has worked for me standing on snow and ice for hours, it may work well for you.

Muskyman
October 31, 2013, 01:22 AM
I have literally spent years of my life standing on metal planks in MN winters while working, and my feet were always cold (go figure). I tried several pairs of very expensive boots and my feet were still cold. One day I went into the house I was working on to warm up (below zero that day), and they happened to be putting carpet in that day. Eureka! I took some scraps of carpet pad, took the insoles out of my boots, traced them onto the carpet pad, and cut out insoles from the carpet pad. Then put the insoles back in my boots followed by the new carpet pad insoles. Goodbye cold feet! Now I buy my winter boots a little too big for me (extra wide if I can find them) and add carpet pad insoles. It doesn't matter how many grams of insulation a boot has. The soles are usually just solid rubber with a very thin foam insole, but that's where you need the insulation the most. Even cheap boots keep my feet toasty warm with the carpet pad added. It's also very comfy, and if you make a couple extra pairs of insoles you will always have dry ones. They are also extremely cheap (or free) to replace if they get worn out or stinky. Try it. It works great!

V-fib
October 31, 2013, 06:24 PM
Tiny and muskyman great ideas! I have some liner socks that I think I'll try the bag idea with. just hope the toes don't get sweaty Will see... the carpetpad insoles is a good idea too! I just happen to have some from our carpet installation. I'm going to give them a try!

Keep all the great ideas coming!

V-fib

rodensouth
October 31, 2013, 10:52 PM
My wife can sit in a stand forever if her feet don't get cold. She found Boot Blankets, insulated over boots online somewhere. She packs them in and puts them on in the stand and they work great. You can even drop in some chemical handwarmers on top of the toe of your boot to get more comfy. All of the chemical in boot rigs were a letdown. I looked at the thermacell too, but she didn't need them after trying the blankets. They have a tough bottom on them you could walk a bit in, or keep em on riding a wheeler or snowmobile.

V-fib
November 1, 2013, 04:49 AM
rodensouth, does your wife hunt with the boot blankets in central florida? Just courious. I do have a pair of them that I keep out in my condo and they do a pretty good job. However they are much too big and bulky to carry out into the snow when sitting out in the open.

thanks for your input

v-fib

caribou
November 2, 2013, 07:20 PM
I use Caribou Mukluks for Winter camping and setting traps, but I use "Baffin Boots" , basicly a rubber boot with a felt liner I change out and keep warm with. I add an insole and have 2 pairs of sox on, so I get them a size larger and let my feet have plenty of wiggle room to keep warm in. The Muks get ruined on my snowgo's heat exchangers, so I only use them when Im not riding or doing work in wet/damp conditions.

For all around use, a 35$ pair of lined baffins and an sextra insole are awsome. but when its cold cold cold out, you gotta move around, thats what I know.

Finnland uses the same type boots and liners for their military, so Im not the only one :D

V-fib
November 3, 2013, 03:34 AM
thanks caribou for the info.

V-fib

rodensouth
November 3, 2013, 01:05 PM
I agree about the big and bulky part. She uses them when we go to Arkansas. 28 degrees about as cold as I remember, and no snow, also sitting in a blind. Have a bag she stuffs them in that clips to backpack.

I haven't used mine, because it's not cold enough to hurt my feet, yet.

I'm enjoying all the great info in this thread, I bought some plain dr scholl inserts and stacked two in each of her boots. She can still lace them, and not too tight. I bet she will have real comfy feet this Christmas back home in AR.

tickfarm
November 4, 2013, 06:50 PM
I have the same problem. I hunt from an elevated stand with a wooden floor. I have a pair of boot blankets that I got from ProBass the y work well up to a point. I bought a pair of Artic Pacs from Cabelas that are good to 60 below. I wear them when it gets real cold and the y are wonderful. They are bulky but my feet stay warm.

V-fib
November 6, 2013, 11:27 PM
Lot's of great ideas so far.

At this point I'm going with my boot blankets in the condo and I'm going to make some insoles out of the carpet padding and try out some of the full foot chemical footwarmers when out in the elements.

as much as i would like to get some of the boots mentioned here i think my wife would kill me as she calls me Imelda Marcos since I already have more winter boots than I should have!:D

V-fib

msnden
November 7, 2013, 10:28 AM
Just came across this thread, Interesting, as I have been seeking a method to keep my feet warm for years!!! after years of hunting (mainly in a tree stand) northern Mn. it has become a quest! Over the years I have tossed a lot of money in my search, I have more socks, & boots, & yes, gimmicks,than most sporting good stores, I have yet to find a winner!, keeping your head & hands warm help, also, changing socks after a few hours can help, One thing that will work pretty good is (only if you are not going to walk) take a couple of bread wrappers and put them over your socks, this will keep the heat in, however they do not breathe, thus causing moisture, which is not good, so a change of socks is required when any activity is going to take place. I hope this thread keeps getting response as I am open to any new ideas, I have tried the carpet, cutting rubber for inserts, which I must say helps, keep the ideas coming, jmop

V-fib
November 8, 2013, 01:24 AM
yep, I tried the bag thing in boots and initially they keep your feet pretty warm until you start moving around and your feet sweat.

Rifle season starts here in MI on the 15th. They are calling for lows in 20's should be good time to experiment with some of the ideas mentioned here.

v-fib

mnhntr
November 8, 2013, 01:35 AM
First off your 2000 gram thinsulate is a gimmick. Anything over 1000 is not any better. Second if your using all these and walking to your stand making your feet sweat they will be cold even if you light your boots on fire. You either need a good pair of boots with a good pair of wool socks or take your boots to the stand while wearing some sneakers or lighter boots and change your socks and boots in the stand. The only boots that I have ever worn that will keep your feet warm regardless of temp and activity are Lacrosse Ice Kings and a pair of good mid weight wool socks.

V-fib
November 9, 2013, 01:54 AM
Well, I cut some carpet pad and made new inserts for my boots. Sat outside today for about 3 hours hunting. temp about 39 degrees and my feet were toasty warm without the need for toewarmers.

v-fib

Resist Evil
November 9, 2013, 10:45 AM
Well, I cut some carpet pad and made new inserts for my boots. Sat outside today for about 3 hours hunting. temp about 39 degrees and my feet were toasty warm without the need for toewarmers.

v-fib
Glad to hear it!

V-fib
November 9, 2013, 03:46 PM
like i said in an earlier post i'm going to keep experimenting with all the good ideas posted.

where there's a will there's a way.

V-fib

brainwake
November 12, 2013, 10:48 AM
I saw a documentary on the science channel once. They were experimenting with the human body under extremely cold conditions. They ended up making this suit that basically warmed the torso and in return the body regulated the extremities. It was based on circulation. It kind of lead me to believe that if the torso is properly warmed, the extremities would take care of themselves....just a thought..of course if your feet are in snow...that is a bit different.

Arkansas Paul
November 12, 2013, 12:11 PM
A good pair of socks that wick away sweat are good too. I have a pair of Under Armour Cold Gear socks that are great. I didn't like paying $25 for one pair of socks, but they work. Those on, then a pair of thick wool socks over them and a pair of Browning 600 gram Thinsulate boots and I never have a problem with my feet getting cold.

The carpet pad trick is neat too. If I ever have a problem, I'll try that out. Prolly is pretty comfortable too.

V-fib
November 12, 2013, 01:02 PM
yeah, I paid $25 for some cabelas wool socks thatl are worthless. So i'm kind of shy of paying that amount again. We have about 3/4" of snow here in west MI but it should be gone by this weekends rifle opener. The first 3 days of the season I usually spend 8+ hours a day afield so I should have plenty of time to evaluate some of the ideas posted here. funny though it's supposed to warm up to the 60's by the weekend, and hardly any of the standing corn is picked in neighboring fields. go figure:D

98Redline
November 12, 2013, 05:28 PM
Regarding the warm torso "core" temperature thing. There are a couple of companies that manufacture a heated vest that you could wear under your parka to help keep your core warm. The trick is finding out how much heat you need to make sure your extremeties stay warm.

I also posted about those heater body suits back a page or so. I have a buddy that hunts out in Saskatchewan and swears by those things. He says that until he started using the heater suit, he damn near froze to death every time he went up there to hunt (i.e. too cold and stiff to be able to climb out of his stand)

Officers'Wife
November 12, 2013, 06:22 PM
As mentioned many times, nature blessed you with a system that keeps your vitals protected then rest of you. A good warm coat and knit "watch" hat under fur lined hat will go further to keep your feet and hands warm than all the gadgets in the world. In cattle country people swear by wool socks for working in the snow but they still maintain if your feet are cold put on a hat.

V-fib
November 13, 2013, 03:54 AM
Well, i was hunting in the snow yesterday evening with temps in the low 30's. I added a pair of neoprene socks to the mix of liner sock and wool sock with the carpet pad insoles i made and wow! no issues with cold feet. I think is was the placement of the neoprene sock that made a difference. In the past it was liner sock, wool sock, neoprene sock and feet were ok but eventually got pretty cold. Last night I switched the order to liner sock , neoprene sock then wool sock and was amazed at the difference.

98redline and officers wife,

I always have been a warm hat guy and my hunting jacket is super warm. However, they do make a chemical warmer similar to hand/foot warmers only larger that you stick on your back over the kidneys. I have not tried them.

thanks again for all the good input

v-fib

Double Naught Spy
November 13, 2013, 09:11 AM
If as the belief has been stated that if you keep your torso or torso and head properly warm that your feet or hands and feet will be fine were true, then we would not need gloves or anything other than flip-flops.

Yes, it is important that your head and torso remain warm, but at the same time, your hands and feet also need appropriate protection. You don't see people who claim to be appropriately warm who are sitting for long periods of time in the stand with their boots and gloves off.

V-fib
November 13, 2013, 10:15 AM
DNS, good point!

v-fib

brainwake
November 13, 2013, 10:44 AM
I dunno...that documentary I saw, the guy wasn't wearing gloves or shoes...and he was able to perform fine motor skills with the warm torso suit.

Tirod
November 13, 2013, 12:23 PM
The amount of heat lost from your head is minimal and the theory has been debunked several times.

References and links would help understand this better. My experience over the last 40 years of being outdoors in the winter hunting and in the Army Reserves training says otherwise to me. The circulatory system is biased to pump blood to the brain, and the neck is the most exposed area blood vessels pass thru. That bias is why the extremities shut down and we lose toes and fingers to freezing first.

I keep my feet warm by trapping heat with headovers and face masks. Having the soles of my feet insulated away from thick cold tread works better for me. I avoid heavy winter boots as much as possible now and wear light trail hikers with good socks. I'm sixty with diabetes and my feet are warmer now than when I chased the grail of heavy Arctic boots. I did have Matterhorns and the like, no thank you.

If you remember Moon boots, you remember they had very light molded soles but a thick insulated insole. They basically were copies of Inuit and Siberian native footgear done in modern materials. Unlike native designs, they were waterproof and vapor proof, so moisture built up inside them. I doubt they will be reinvented for hunting tho, there's little profit in it. Like magnum calibers, people buy what's extreme, not what works.

Double Naught Spy
November 13, 2013, 04:50 PM
I dunno...that documentary I saw, the guy wasn't wearing gloves or shoes...and he was able to perform fine motor skills with the warm torso suit.

Where do we get these warm torso suits that negate the need for gloves and shoes?

It isn't just about being able to perform fine motor skills, but discomfort levels.

By the way, what documentary was this?

brainwake
November 13, 2013, 05:12 PM
I am not sure, I tried to find it, but too vague. It was just one of those things I caught on TV. I know I don't sound like the most reliable source here. :) I won't say much more on the topic.

I will say that I wear shoes and gloves..although..I tend to wear the lightest weight gloves in favor of control over warmth.

I also wear decent hunting boots with 2 pairs of wool socks....and a warm beanie...I also like my insulated hood up to keep the neck warm.

But when it gets cold, I wear a base layer, a mid layer and an insulated outer layer. I go for the bibs because they give extra to the torso and don't let cold air up your back.

I also snowboard and have some hot chillies that are a heavy weight base layer. But usually they are too hot. It's all about layers as far as I am concerned. My feet and hands are rarely an issue. YMMV

V-fib
November 14, 2013, 01:58 AM
I would like to see that documentary too.

as stated before I have very warm hats/ face covers and hunting clothes. In fact one snow camo knit hat/facemask is so warm I can only use it if it's really cold otherwise I'm uncomfortable.

Another thing i bring up that i think makes a difference in choosing boots is size and width. I buy winter boots one size larger than my footsize and go with wide instead of medium width. that way you can layer your socks and they won't be packed tight which decreases circulation.

v-fib

savanahsdad
November 14, 2013, 03:21 AM
I gave up the wool socks years ago , and the 2 or 3 pairs of socks too, after I was told about Fox brand wick socks , you can get them at Fleet Farm for about $6 a pair they pull the moisture away from your feet keeping them dry , and I put 1/2" thick felt liners in the bottom of my Rocky Mountain boots , and if it gets under 10deg I'll slip on my boot blankets, and make sure your feet can breath , if your boot are to tight or you have to many tight socks on the blood cant flow ,

redneck2
November 14, 2013, 08:48 AM
One thing for everyone to remember is that some guys (like our OP) have medical issues that change the equation. Referring to this in terms of blood flow.

When we ice fish, we take pieces of regular thick carpet to put our feet on. As noted previously, I suspect that it isn't the insulation around and on top of your feet that's as important as the cold that gets thru the soles of your feet.

I was gonna suggest something like you have come up with. I use thin sock liners, then heavier wool or polypro sox. As you get older, keeping feet warm is not easy.

Double Naught Spy
November 14, 2013, 08:58 AM
I am not sure, I tried to find it, but too vague. It was just one of those things I caught on TV. I know I don't sound like the most reliable source here. I won't say much more on the topic.

I will say that I wear shoes and gloves..although..I tend to wear the lightest weight gloves in favor of control over warmth.

I also wear decent hunting boots with 2 pairs of wool socks....and a warm beanie...I also like my insulated hood up to keep the neck warm.

But when it gets cold, I wear a base layer, a mid layer and an insulated outer layer. I go for the bibs because they give extra to the torso and don't let cold air up your back.

Okay, so I don't see you putting a lot of stock into the notion that if your body/torso stays warm that you don't need gloves or boots either.

Being active and staying warm is quite a bit different than sitting in a stand quietly and trying to stay warm.

Tirod
November 14, 2013, 11:21 AM
That's the problem with most outdoor clothing - it's designed for those who intend to keep moving. Sitting still for hours, even all day, you need a lot more. At that point we have to look at the bigger picture - it takes shelter, not a warm coat. You build an environment with an outer barrier wall that resists some of the temperature and conditions the part you are in.

Nobody mentions it, but it's one reason hunting blinds are becoming popular. You can raise the temperature in one by just being in there - respiration does the job. I've experienced the same result by using a net over my face, it doesn't pass air to some degree, and elevates the temp next to me. It doesn't take much.

Lots of ways to combat the cold, some require preparation. You either shelter up more, or expend some form of energy to remain warm. Sitting still is the hardest situation to overcome.

brainwake
November 14, 2013, 11:35 AM
Those cheap warming butt pads work great too. Anytime you have contact with the ground, that is where the cold will leach out of you. That is why the ice fishing comment earlier emphasized the insulation on the soles. As a backpacker, we tend to look at the R rating of our sleeping pads when considering what is needed. The air mattresses are comfortable, but will freeze you out if you sleep on cold ground. So sometimes the closed cell foam is better, though not as comfortable.

So all in all, I would just say that insulation between you and the ground and your core body temps should be the priority. Of course you should also cover and insulate your head and extremities.

V-fib
November 15, 2013, 12:19 AM
Appreciate all the good ideas and feedback on this subject. I'm off hunting our rifle season with warmer feet than past seasons!:D

v-fib

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