Tips for smoking in the Colorado cold


Collegian | Gregory James

Colorado State senior Will Davis lights up his bong on the balcony of his apartment in Fort Collins Nov 3. It’s important to layer up before going outside to smoke.

Miles Buchan, Staff Reporter

As you already know or will soon learn, Colorado’s winter conditions can be brutal and unforgiving. If there’s one thing I know for sure, though, it is that stoners endure. Whether you’re sneaking outside for a quick session while your family plays board games or you’re out for a full-blown winter excursion, preparation is key. That’s why I’ve put together some of the tips and tricks I’ve learned over the years to help you out the next time you’ve got to smoke outside in less-than-ideal conditions.

First, and most importantly, clothing is important. Being from Colorado, I will tell you with confidence that underdressing is not worth the shivering. Wear several layers — the most important being a waterproof or windproof shell. Gloves are nice but can get in the way, in which case hoodie or jacket pockets should work fine. If you want to go the extra mile, put a hand warmer in each pocket so between hits, you can bless your fingers with extra pocket warmth.


The next aspect to consider is location. You want to be somewhere that gives you coverage from wind or falling snow, so it’s a big win if you are the owner of a gazebo-type structure. If not, stand next to something taller than you — like a wall, fence or car — to help shield yourself, the weed and the flame.

Stay out from under trees; the accumulated snow can come down on you. If there is no structure to be found, then just focus on keeping your product dry. If you’re having a hard time, ask a buddy to form a “happy house” with their hands. This is just like making a little house over the bowl or joint so the wind won’t blow the flame out.

Now that you know what to do with yourself, the cannabis aspect deserves some attention. I am a big fan of keeping my smoking devices — such as lighters and pipes — in a fanny pack or small bag when outside. That way, there will be less fumbling around with glass pieces, which means you’ll be less likely to drop, break or lose any valuable paraphernalia.

To that point, rather than bringing a glass pipe outside with me to mess around with, refill and relight, I prefer to smoke a stick (joint or blunt) because ideally, it will only require one attempt to light. Even better: You may consider taking a dab from a pen, rig or nectar collector outside. This can be tricky, but if your goal is to spend less time outside, ripping a quick dab might be your move.

Lastly, we cannot only survive, we can thrive in the cold. Maybe take a day to embrace your winter wonderland vibes and build an igloo or smoke fort. Set up a nice place to sit, plop a snowball in your bong for the cooling effect and have yourself a frozen hot box. Don’t leave that piece outside, though, as it’s liable to crack from the frozen water. Happy winter break and winter smoking!

Reach Miles Buchan at or on Twitter @buchanmiles.