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July 2017 Issue
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Tips for staying warm on a winter tramp

Drink tea and soup to keep yourself hydrated on your winter tramp. Photo: Meghan Walker

Knowing how to stay warm when tramping in the colder months is vital for enjoying your wintertime rambles. Here are a few tips…

Rest awhile. Going hard-out, sweating up a storm might feel like the best way to get warm, but once you stop moving, that sweat will cause a chill as it cools down on your skin. Wear moisture-wicking clothing and take rests to avoid over-exerting and drenching your base layers.

Keep eating. You’ll need more calories in the cold, so keep munching while you walk. Good options for winter are chocolate, cheese, and salami.

Drink plenty of water. It’s surprisingly easy to become dehydrated in the winter – the air is drier and due to the cold you may not feel thirsty. Eating soups and drinking tea at night will add water to your diet if you find you’re drinking less during the day.

Camp up high. If you’re forgoing the hut, avoid pitching your tent in a valley, where cold air settles overnight.

Be bold, start cold. At the beginning of a cold-weather tramp, it’s tempting to start out with all your layers on. But within minutes, your body temperature will rise and you’ll soon be stopping to remove those extra clothes. Starting out with one less layer than you think you need will help save time and avoid unnecessary sweating.

Sleep with your boots. Frozen boots can make a cold morning even colder. Bring your boots inside the hut, and if you have removable insoles, put them into your sleeping bag for warm toes in the morning. If you’re camping, put your boots in the bottom of your sleeping bag.