1. Care for your batteries
Camera batteries go flat really fast in the cold winter, so remember to keep them warm. I usually put them close to my body. Remember to bring extra batteries if you are going for a long day trip. If you are going for a few days’ expedition, make sure you bring enough backup batteries with you. If you're shooting with Nikon, please use only Nikon original batteries.
2. Keep fingers warm with the right gear!
The important thing when shooting in the winter cold is to keep your fingers warm and wear the right gear. For temperatures down to minus -15 degrees and below, I wear a pair of thin nylon gloves that comes with rubber grip on the tip of the finger. That gives a good feel for making adjustments and to push the camera buttons.
Now, here’s the trick, I wear an additional fingerless glove mitten that comes with flip-top cover over it. I then only flip open the top of the mitten when I need to push the small buttons or to change lenses. I am pretty sure you could still shoot with the mitten on for the regular buttons.
Overall, remember to try it out before your trip to make sure all your gears are fit for the trip. For clothing, I would suggest you visit a winter gear shop and consult the experts there to share with you what gear would be more appropriate for your trip.
3. Protect your camera and lens
If it's raining or snowing, always keep the lens cap on from getting the snowflakes into your lens. It would be hard to clean them in the wet whether. Never never use your mouth to blow warm air onto your lens like what you always do when cleaning your lens in warm weather, you may get a layer of ice coating on your lens! All you need is dry cleaning cloths and I would bring more if I were you.
Use rain gear; there are commercially available, ready-made camera covers, if possible. For a quick and cheap way and if you can't find anything better, just use a plastic bag, rubber-banded around the camera and leave an opening for the lens, of course.
4. Try to avoid changing lenses
You can get moisture inside the camera body, and it can freeze and damage the camera. If you really have to change, do it fast and do it at a safe place like under shelter and remember to remove your mittens cover flip. It can be very slippery.
© Alex Soh