CAN YOU NORDIC WALK IN THE SNOW?
The answer is YES but its best to do it in the softer fluffy snow and where the risk of underlying ice is minimal (i.e over grassy terrain rather than hard surfaces or where frozen puddles may be hidden underneath!)
Here are our tips for staying safe and upright in the wintery conditions.
AVOID CHILLY DIGITS!
Keeping warm is the key to comfy winter walking – we recommend layers of clothing and of course, gloves that will not restrict proper use of the pole straps. Our favourites are the Gabel Long fingered sport glove We also stock the fantastic Sealskinz waterproof gloves and those with touchscreen finger tips so take a look now to avoid missing out.
STICK YOUR NECK OUT!
Don’t let heat escape from the top of your jacket or coat, these versatile neck warmers are just the thing to stop heat loss but are far more comfortable than a scarf. Soft, lightweight, breathable and made in England, we think they are a must have for any Nordic walker! They can double up as a head band too!
KEEP FEET DRY!
Like your head and hands, your feet need to be kept warm and this is not easy if your shoes are not waterproof. A few steps in damp grass and hey presto squelchy shoes and cold damp feet! Obviously a good pair of Goretex shoes or lightweight walking boots will negate this but it does push up the cost of footwear by quite a bit. There is an answer though…Sealskinz waterproof socks are a remarkable invention and they really do keep your feet as dry as a bone even if you walk through a stream!
DON’T SLIP UP!
Winter walks always include the risk of icy paths and it’s worth remembering that as the night draws in puddles can freeze over too (Another reason to use a head torch!). Where possible slippery paths can be avoided by simply walking on the grass but a set of ice cleats or snow grabbers like the non slip Artimates can cost you as little as £9.99 and will minimise the risks or a nasty slip.
BE SEEN IN FLURO GREEN!
What better way to add a winter layer than to include the safety factor or reflective strips and high viz colour ways? Our Silva high performance reflective gilets can be worn over existing clothing and although lightweight, they cut out the wind and are a handy item to have in your backpack in case it gets chilly or the visibility falls due to foul weather and fog. A sportier look than your usual roadside safety vest, these are more stylish and have a mesh back to avoid that dampness under your backpack (which can cause you to chill too)
Finally, it really pays to take time over what you wear underneath your walking clothing because you need materials that will wick away the sweat (or even turn it into energy!) rather than things that will leave you with dampness next to the skin which will cause you to chill as soon as you stop moving for any length of time. For comfort too, choose materials such as bamboo, merino wool or breathable sports base layers rather than cotton. The highly technical X Bionic range actually maintain your core temperature at 37 degrees and provide supreme comfort from your undies right up to outer layers…well worth the investment and once worn, never left in the drawer again!