This is an excellent discussion. i am going out is weekend in WV and I have already reorganized my pack so that certain essentials will be easier to access if i am cold. I am thinking a fanny pack on the front with extra socks and large zip locks ( for wet feet to line boots), large nitrile gloves for a vapor barrier (ala Erik the Black), toe and hand warmer, fire tabs and stove, hot chocolate. My feet have gotten wet before and I didn't replace my socks cos they were in the bottom of my pack. Dum, dum,dum.
i wanted to put in my 2 cents (get what ya pay fer). Regarding the posts about urination, i would like to point out that the physiologic discussions assume normo tensive, adequately hydrated individuals.
Imho (and i have dipped a lot of urine, lol!) the vast majority of people are generally chronically dehydrated. Add to that the physical exertion required during a physical pursuit such as backpacking, and you could be setting yourself up before hitting the trail.
Secondly, and I promise this is NEVER discussed among women ( except me LOL!) is that many women of child bearing age are anemic. This doesn't help, either. If you are planning a trip with a female, you should strongly encourage a weeks course of iron with vitamin c (for better absorption) prior to the trip...
I'm thinking one shouldn't rely on urine retention/ excretion as a means of diagnosing hypothermia, but rather helping to understand why adequate hydration is imperative...
I think this discussion should become a sticky!