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Building a Snow Cave

Pack a large pile of snow, dig it out with snow shovels, insulate the bottom, cover the door and...

by John

SNOW CAVES — Ah… There is nothing quite as satisfying as building your own shelter and living in it. For us, snow caves are so fun they are an annual, winter camping event. Click on the links below for more detailed info.

Recommended Gear

Choosing Your Snow Cave Location

Piling a Snow Cave

Digging Out a Snow Cave


Choosing a Snow Cave Location
Piling a Snow Cave
Digging Out a Snow Cave
Sleeping in a Snow Cave
What is a Snow Cave?
Winter Camping Tips

Sleeping in a Snow Cave

Safety First

Temperature: make sure it is 34 degrees Fahrenheit or lower (1 degree Celsius) outside or your snow cave will shrink, crack and possibly even collapse during the night.

Top Heavy: Snow is heavy and the ceiling will collapse if the weight is not supported. The base should be the thickest part of the snow cave (2-3 feet) and the walls should be about 18 inches thick. Wide, short snow cave piles are more prone to collapse.

On Top: The roofs of snow shelters are unpredictable. Do not stand on top of the snow cave when there are people inside. On public land, you should destroy the ceiling and upper walls of the cave if you will be leaving it unattended because other people may accidentally fall through the ceiling—so be curteous.

More Snow Cave Tips
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