Hiking in winter: What beginners should consider
Hiking in winter
What beginners should consider
There is no snow in sight, which is why many pull out the wall shoes. If you want to conquer summits in winter, you should consider a few points.
In Germany, winter is only slowly getting underway. Many areas that actually have snow at this time of year have so far received nothing. Often only a narrow strip of snow has been prepared for driving, the rest is green. Therefore, many resort to hiking boots. However, if you want to climb a summit in winter, you should consider a few points.
Wear enough layers
When hiking, it makes sense to rely on a layer principle. Because you should be prepared for all weather-related challenges. Over the functional underwear, which fits as closely as possible to the body, comes a warming layer – such as a fleece sweater or softshell jacket. Another jacket that protects against wind, rain or snow. It should have a hood that can be pulled over a hat or headband to protect it.
Hiking trousers can be too cold in winter, so it is best to wear functional underwear or leggings here as well. A change of clothes is also important. Because if you don’t change your sweaty clothes after a strenuous tour, you can end up freezing or catching a cold. Gloves and a tube scarf protect hands and neck from the icy wind.
Choosing the right shoes
So that you don’t get cold feet in the mud and snow in winter, the shoes should be well insulated. Also make sure they are waterproof. Gore-Tex models, for example, are absolutely windproof and reliably protect against wet feet. Also make sure that the shaft is high, this protects against twisting and the snow does not end up in the shoe. The brine should also offer grip on icy surfaces.
Plan enough time
It gets dark much faster in winter than in summer. Sometimes the sun goes down as early as 4 p.m. That’s why you should start the tour as early as possible and always have a headlamp with you – just in case. In addition, hikers should not undertake too much. Stomping through snow or ice fields takes a lot of strength.
Enough food and drink
Since winter hiking requires more energy due to the cold and the exertion, athletes should have enough provisions with them. Fruit, nuts or energy bars are recommended. But bread should also end up in your backpack, as many huts are closed in winter. To warm yourself from the inside, simply fill a thermos with tea. Instead of taking a long break, it’s better to take several short ones – this way you don’t cool down so quickly. If you have a seat cushion with you, you can even take a seat in the snow or on cold stones.
Grödel or light crampons are practical if it gets icy. Make sure that the hiking shoes can be combined with it. Gaiters can be useful to close the gap between the shoe upper and trousers. Equip hiking poles with the right baskets. Because if you’re out and about in the snow, you should rely on bigger ones – that way you won’t sink as much. In case of doubt, an emergency bivy bag can save lives. It protects against cooling down if you get lost or possibly injured.