Field exercises in cold wet locations

#1
Sorry if this is in the wrong place but any help would be appreciated.
I was on exercise with the OTC last weekend in Thetford and it was bloody hard going so I’m just looking for any tips specifically for wet cold locations also any suggestions for kit to bring?
One thing I’m curious about is sleeping in wet kit. If I have been out and my kit is wet and then have to go on stag and I’m wet again do I/should I get straight back in my sleeping bag in full kit? The only thing I did was remove my combat jacket and loosen my boots but we didn’t even have enough time in the morning to get my boots done backup which meant a 4 mile tab over shit terrain with loose boots so I would be pretty fucked if I took much more off or had to change.
Also, those engineer burgens are bloody shite, how they hell do you deal with them!?

MB
 
#2
Welcome to the world of OTC, hurry up and wait then its why havent you moved yet?

In the knowledge that skin is waterproof....let us pray. :wink:

Why didnt you on the gore tex when it started to rain?
 
#3
well that was another kit problem I had, my gortex jacket zip broke so i was getting wet at the top where i couldnt zip it up and the rain was real on and off so i was gettin wet a little getting it on and off so i build up.
I also was not given a daysack and i had gore-tex jkt on but was told to leave the trsrs so my bottom half got soaked on stag. Oh and my webbing belt snapped too. can you tell i had a great weekend?

Well anyway, do you sleep in wet kit?
 
#4
I try and take off as much kit as I can get away with when I sleep. I'm usually down to a t-shirt and trousers.
Boots take less that a min to tighten up so it’s really not a problem, and if your trousers are soaked u can keep them on, just drop them to around your ankles.
Keep the Kit that you've taken off in your doss bag with you so that it warms up and can dry a little bit as well.
This way you also have extra layers to put on when you get up or go on stag so that you can stay warm.
Hope this helps.

T C
 
#5
yeh, what's the deal with gore-tex? do people use it? trousers as well?

any tips for staying warm specifically fingers and toes. I hope it will be a bit easier next time when I have my kit sorted and more organised.
Anyone bring their own bashas? what are the best ones?
 
#7
mbwest said:
yeh, what's the deal with gore-tex? do people use it? trousers as well?

any tips for staying warm specifically fingers and toes. I hope it will be a bit easier next time when I have my kit sorted and more organised.
Anyone bring their own bashas? what are the best ones?
Pack your Garry G-tex trousers, but you'll never use them unless you're expecting to stay in one location (OP, etc) where you can't basha up for a long period of time.

The Cheat's advice is what I was taught and works for me.

Best handwarmers? Gloves. Seriously, try either ice climbing gloves (seal skin etc) or issue gloves with silk liners that you can get from posh equestrian places (never, ever, let people find out about this).

BTW, good on you for not completely enjoying it, but trying to better yourself. (GOD THAT'S PATRONISING)

P.S. Thetford is bonk IDST

Edited to point out where I was being patronising
 
#8
Ref Gore Tex, I dont bother with it, even when its pishing with rain (as was at Hankley not so long ago)

Wet kit and sleeping, current CSM told us to undo trousers and pull them down to ankles when in sleeping bag if they are wet. Never had the time to try it.
Personally when I get into doss bag I have wooly hat, helly,trousers and a pair of black crappy trainers on (careful with this one, if you get caught you may be in for a rollocking)
Basha - not needed unless its going to chuck it down. issue poncho is fine for me.,

Cold fingers and hands- Get some seal skinz gloves, excellent at keeping your hands warm and you can still change mag etc with them on.

By the sounds of it you had abit of shyte weekend, stick with it matey.

Free tip, get a small thermos mug, brew up at dinner, stick tea etc in it and store it in an used ammo pouch, great morale booster at silly o'clock on stag.
 
#9
thanks for the info.
Cheats advice?

I got those silk inner gloves but i didnt think much of em and forgot to pack em! why not let people find out?
Those handwarmers look good, found some re-usable ones, boil em and crack em when you need em and they last for 40mins.

I was thinking of trying some stuff out. I found that there is lots of kneeling and resting on your elbows so i was going to get a piece of gore-tex material and sow it to the knees and elbows of trsrs and jkt and then cover the gore-tex patch with some cotton to stop noise and to feel more comfy. what you think?

Yes Thetford was a bit shite, i did question my sanity at times. IDST.
p.s. i'm new to this shit if you cant tell.
 
#10
why black trainers? more comfy than boots and dry or another reason?

re. basha, it just seems that the issue one is way too thick and hard to pack. surely there must be something better?!?

ill have a look for those seal skin gloves but why does nobody fancy the handwarmers?

also what about tights? i hear all the fisherman wear em, and what about the fingerless gloves that have a mitten top that velcros on and off?

also, i hear when you first get your smock they come with a waxxy waterproof layer, is there anyway you can renew this?

MB
 
#11
I've seen guys to take a chopped down roll mat on stag with them to lay on, like a folding german one, thin as paper but would do the job I guess. Wouldnt suggest you do it with your issued one.

I seriously wouldnt bother with hand warmers. Stick you the layering system and you should be fine.

Black trainers because white ones would show up at night, a god send to change into if you have done a hard tab. Plus if you get bumped you can still leg it in them rather then trying to force your boots back on.
 
#12
mbwest said:
thanks for the info.
Cheats advice?
i.e. Me... The Cheat...

Seal Skins do some cool G-tex sock randoms that I’ve heard good news about. And i just did some fibua and a bunch of lads had neo-prene fishing gloves where the finders kind of peel back and stuff. They were thin enough to change mags, and the finger things were good for the little fiddly bits, and because they're neo-prene (that’s so spelled wrong) they're even warmer when wet.
Had some on and they were the dogs danglers.
T C

And if you’re going to cut up your roll mat and make a little arse sized piece to sit on. Can stick it in your bergan and keeps your bum warm if you’re sitting around eating/cleaning weapons/o-groups etc.
T C

And the trousers are good for fibua...bit more protection on the knees and when your crawling through sewers and that. Last addition I promise.
T C

Ok 3 times...once for bad spelling...
T C
 
#13
mbwest said:
i had gore-tex jkt on but was told to leave the trsrs so my bottom half got soaked on stag.
This is called "pump DS".

The purpose of MVP kit is to keep you dry. It keeps you dry so that you can soldier better, harder and longer. You getting wet and miserable can eventually lead to a) you acting like a mong: b) hypothermia leading to c) you being ineffective - in fact, worse than ineffective because you can rapidly become a no duff casualty requiring casevac.

Why not suggest saving weight by leaving your rifle in the armoury?

Its not you, its poor DS'ing.
 
#15
B_B must have missed you in the bushes with the CWS....

Each to his own, it was drummed into us during athlone that the Gore tex jacket was issued because of health and safety and the staff decided when we put it on, which has been never. I've always found the S95 fieldjacket good when it rains.
 
#16
Like I said, "Pump DS".

FFS, these clots will ensure somebody gets hypothermia. The days of "you only get wet once" and "Skin is waterproof" died out with the dinosaurs.

The OC should be looking into this IMO, its just crap."each to his own" is wrong: you are being trained to do a job efficiently. MVP kit helps you do that.
 
#17
If you get a hard time for wearing your Gary Gortex, wear it under the outer layer. Put a set of cotton long johns and long sleeved vest on, then the Gortex layer and then the Cbt 95 layer. Thus no rustling of gortex and no grumpy DS.

The charcoal hand warmers are the dog gonads. Very cheap and the better ones last a night. Used them on Sennybrodge on many a cold night and they have done the job. Always remember to put them in the cloth bag provided and don't forget to put a thick elastic band around the warmer to stop it opening when in your pocket.

Issue poncho is v good for keeping you off the ground when on stag. Make a biivy bag out of it by closing one end and the side and then get inside the ponch when on stag and on your belly. If it then pi**es down with rain when you are on stag you will stay dry.

A dry soldiers is a happy soldier!!! by the time you have served 25 years we might be issued some useful kit to do the job, but i doubt it.
 
#18
To be honest, the best thing for drying kit on any exercise is your own body heat unless you've got a vehicle where you can drape wet kit over an engine or warm decking. If you get in your maggot fully dressed you will dry out everything. To make sure you retain your body heat in your newly dried clothes ensure that you wash your body to the waist, plus your nether bits - use soap all the time. Try and have a clean tee shirt or vest to wear next to your skin because the sweat on the closest layer is what chills you. You can put your spare vest or tee shirt in your sleeping bag with you and that will dry the sweat off it. Obviously as the clothes get dirtier they trap less heat from your body so the longer you're out without fresh laundry, the worse it gets.

Another essential. Keep your feet as dry as possible. Your feet will get cold before the rest of your body because there is no fat to hold the heat in. Even if you don't get water inside your boots your feet will still sweat - even when cold. So ensure that you take your boots off at least once a day. Dry your feet thoroughly, especially between your toes and let the fresh air at your feet - even if it is freezing. When you put your socks back on put a dry pair of cotton socks over your bare feet before putting your boot socks on. Spare pairs of cotton socks are easy to carry and dry. They absorb the sweat from your feet and stop your boot socks getting saturated with sweat.

Cleanliness where possible is the key. Always try and carry enough spare (lightweight) kit to wear next to your skin and it is essential that you wash sweat from your body - even in the coldest weather. Even if there is no hot water. Washing in cold water is uncomfortable but trust me, when you put your clothes back on you will feel 100% better immediately. If you are in a command position make sure all your troops follow the same regime.

All of the above has been learned the hard way.
 
#19
GDav said:
To be honest, the best thing for drying kit on any exercise is your own body heat unless you've got a vehicle where you can drape wet kit over an engine or warm decking. If you get in your maggot fully dressed you will dry out everything. To make sure you retain your body heat in your newly dried clothes ensure that you wash your body to the waist, plus your nether bits - use soap all the time. Try and have a clean tee shirt or vest to wear next to your skin because the sweat on the closest layer is what chills you. You can put your spare vest or tee shirt in your sleeping bag with you and that will dry the sweat off it. Obviously as the clothes get dirtier they trap less heat from your body so the longer you're out without fresh laundry, the worse it gets.

Another essential. Keep your feet as dry as possible. Your feet will get cold before the rest of your body because there is no fat to hold the heat in. Even if you don't get water inside your boots your feet will still sweat - even when cold. So ensure that you take your boots off at least once a day. Dry your feet thoroughly, especially between your toes and let the fresh air at your feet - even if it is freezing. When you put your socks back on put a dry pair of cotton socks over your bare feet before putting your boot socks on. Spare pairs of cotton socks are easy to carry and dry. They absorb the sweat from your feet and stop your boot socks getting saturated with sweat.

Cleanliness where possible is the key. Always try and carry enough spare (lightweight) kit to wear next to your skin and it is essential that you wash sweat from your body - even in the coldest weather. Even if there is no hot water. Washing in cold water is uncomfortable but trust me, when you put your clothes back on you will feel 100% better immediately. If you are in a command position make sure all your troops follow the same regime.

All of the above has been learned the hard way.
All good advice, on the washing front if it is cold use wet wipes, yeah I used to slag people off for using them then one day I tried it, leave the packet in the pocket of your sleeping bag, you can wash your groin and armpits etc in your gonk bag and come out warm and ready. They are not as good as a proper wash but they are better than a rushed poor attempt at a wash!

As for the All Arms Bergan, I assume thats what you mean by Engineers Bergan, get a peice of sturdy cardboard that fits inside against your back, it's not the best solution but it is free and it stops the thing becoming a shape akin to a bowlingball bag and rolling all over the place!
 
#20
Something I forgot to mention. If you DON'T wear all your kit in your sleeping back and finish up putting wet clothes back on - you'll be far worse off and far colder than you were before.
 

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