Essential gear needed for cold weather treks
A cold weather trek is a challenging and potentially daunting concept. Yet those individuals who have experienced the pleasures such an adventure has to offer understand why the effort is more than worthwhile. Such individuals also understand the importance of having the right gear. Not only does this help mitigate against the inherent risks in such activity, it will also enhance comfort and therefore allow you to enjoy it fully.
Cold weather treks are not always voluntary. People can find themselves having to make such a journey because of unexpected circumstances during a hiking expedition or skiing holiday for example. In these situations it is even more important to have the right equipment, as your priorities will not be about comfort and enjoyment, but actual survival.
Here are some essential pieces of kit for cold weather trekking.
- Ski Jackets are one of the most fundamentally important bits of cold weather gear and a new ski jacket should be at the top of your list of things to buy. As well as their obviously important waterproof, wind-proof and heat-insulating qualities, they can also provide a useful means of easy-to-access storage with a range of different-sized pockets and compartments for smaller items like torches and first-aid kits. Some of the best jackets are also designed to be suitable for a range of climates, with features like vents and hoods allowing them to be adapted for different temperatures.
- Footwear is also critically important, so invest in some good walking boots. Quality is essential for safety, comfort and durability, so get the best you can afford. The last thing you want on a trek is blisters or a twisted ankle so make sure they fit you perfectly and break them in before you use them out in the field. Complement the boots with some walking socks specially designed for cold weather use. Socks that wick away moisture are particularly useful as they can reduce the risk of blisters and chafing.
- A Day Pack is another great investment. Find one that is large enough to contain everything you need to carry. It must fit you comfortably and have plenty of pockets and compartments for easy access and organization of all your kit and equipment.
Once you have fundamental items like this arranged, create a comprehensive list of other items. As a minimum you should have a change of socks, sunglasses, a waterproof hat, gloves, a water bottle, a torch, first aid kit, and snacks. It is also sensible to ensure your phone is fully charged before heading off in case it is needed in an emergency.
Whether you are planning a cold weather adventure, or whether you find yourself making an unexpected journey in cold weather, the right gear can make all the difference between success and disaster. Preparation is key as it is far easier to make arrangements in advance than it is during the situation itself. So before you start a trek, or if you think there is a reasonable risk of you having to make one, do your research and make the right investments.
Use your instincts to survive