Snow, temps in the teens, should we unplug to play in the snow?

Hi all,

We're enjoying a beautiful snow day here in Cincy.   Last year during this time we didn't yet have Jeremy's pump.  Jeremy had one of his lowest lows last year while we were playing in the snow.  I'm not going to let my fears stop us,  (they used to) but I do have questions on the best way to plan.

So question for you pump experts,  would you unplug for prolonged outside activity?  Forgive my ignorance.  I guess I worry it will be too cold for the insulin in his tubing?   Just wondering what you all do, unplug or not.   Thanks in advance.  Have a great day.


Jeremy's mom

Hi "Mom"!

I may not be an expert (I've been pumping for just over a year) and I don't often spend extended amounts of time playing in the snow if I can avoid it (used to when I was much younger though!), but here is what my pump trainer had said to me regarding this situation.  Jeremy will not be wearing the pump on the outside of his clothing.  Rather, it will be in a pocket on his "inside" clothes or clipped to his belt maybe.  He'll have a snowsuit or some other kind of outdoors clothing on over it.  So, the heat from his body should keep the insulin and pump at an acceptable temperature, just as it regulates his body temperature.

One thing to keep in mind is that if he is going to be unusually active outside (i.e. tobogganing and running back up the hill each time), you might want to use a temp basal a little lower than regular.

Hope this helps!  Oh, and you can keep all the snow there in Cincy; I'm already sick of it here in Ontario, Canada!

This is also the first year my son has had a pump. A few weeks ago he played outside in the snow, full tilt, for about an hour. We disconnected his pump and with all his activity, he did fine without for that amount of time.


I have not been disconnecting my son's, 4, pump when he goes out in the snow. It has been so cold here the last few weeks that he hasn't been out side for very long. I do not worry about the tubing freezing because it is under his snowpants and jacket.

I think the best suggestion is to test before he goes out to play and maybe test while he's outside after an hour or so. If he usually gets a snack before high activity (like before PE or sports) then I would give him one before going out in the snow too. Probably can't hurt to give a 15 g snack before playing if you are worried. Have fun!

Hello, Fellow Cincy Mom.

 I am totally new to the pump too.  In fact last year at this time my son didn't have diabetes yet.  He is going to be 3yrs.  this month and wears Animas.  We didn't have any problems last week with it getting too cold.  Well, maybe a little when he got snow inside his pants from going down a hill on just his belly!  Ha!

I will say I checked him just before going on and covered him for at least 15 cbs. based on what his number was.  The beauty of the pump is that I can always correct later.  The little guy (thankfully) never had a low.  One day I gave him 20+ cbs uncovered. 

In my very limited experience I say check, carb up, and check again.


Happy snow days!

Keep the pump close to your body in an inside pocket and use that temp basal. You may drop the basal by 40-60% when you play hard! During the summer months when I'm out playing I drop mine that much- even just going out for a walk i have to used my temp basal! Have fun!