Tips For Hiking in the Cold Weather

0 Posted by - January 28, 2016 - Advice, Blog, Nature & Outdoors, Travel Tips

Do you have second thoughts when it comes to hiking in the cold weather? People usually avoid doing this but it’s a mistake to think that hiking in the cold weather means hiking during Winter only. Cold weather occurs in any other season and especially in the mountains where weather is  unpredictable and can change quickly. In just fifteen minutes weather can change from sunny to rainy and windy.

It is not that difficult but it requires some planning and good accessories.

Here are some tips for hiking in the cold weather;

If possible don’t go alone

Having a company is always more interesting. And especially if that person has a richer expertise when it comes to hiking in different weather conditions.

Print a map

Tourism boards and national parks have hiking maps that you can download or print from their official websites. I don’t have to mention how useful and important this is.

Directions

Check weather forecast

Before starting a hike you should always check the weather conditions. A site I really love is mountain-forecast.com. It shows weather conditions for thousands of mountain ski resorts, difficulty and best months to climb. This is a must for your trip-planning process.

Snowy Peak

Contact the closest tourism board

People from the tourism boards are usually locals or experts who have rich knowledge of the area and who can give you great advice or pointers. For example, on my last hike I chatted with people from a local tourism board and I got a really valuable advice. You can also research internet forums and see what other people have written before.

Let other people know your plans

This is really important, especially if you will be hiking alone. Let your family or friends know where you will be, when you will start your hike and when do you expect to return. If you will go as a group you should make a list with names of the people and their contact number.

Set realistic expectations

If you are planning a difficult hike, it isn’t the best idea to mix an expert and a beginner. If you are going as a group I think it’s very important to set a plan and have the same expectations to avoid any misunderstandings.

Have a good hiking gear

Good hiking gear includes essentials like: map and compass, sun protection, good clothing, first-aid kit, matches, backpack and a tent if you plan longer hike.

Tent catching some rays

Food and water

Staying hydrated is a must, thus you need a good water bottle. If you plan a long hike or in an unfriendly environment you should definitely get a water purifier. You also need a supply of food in case of emergency. Energy bars, drink mix, supplements etc. are some things you can take with you. I recommend Quest protein bars. You can read my review of them here or check their Amazon page.

Clothing

When you are hiking in the cold conditions you generate body heat by moving. You need to stay dry and warm, that’s why it is so important to choose good clothes. You need to be dressed in layers to be able to regulate the amount of warmth you need. Avoid cotton because it keeps the sweat and you will stay wet. The best material is made of synthetic or merino wool. For the outer layer you should have a good breathable and waterproof jacket.

 

Always be prepared

As previously mentioned, mountain weather is unpredictable and that’s why it’s always good to have an extra clothing and food in case something unexpected happens. Better safe than sorry!

Don’t over pack

If you are just starting with hiking don’t over pack. This can really ruin your trip and make you feel miserable. Instead choose 1-day trails that are suited to your level of fitness. You don’t need so much equipment if you are just starting out.

Hiking the Savage River Loop Trail

Bring a camera!

I love being in the peaceful nature surrounded by beautiful scenery. I also love to capture these moments! If you love photography I’m sure this will be on your list anyway. 😉 I’m currently using a camera from Nikon CoolPix series.

Do you have any tips to share? Feel free to comment below.

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