Guide to keeping warm in Mountain Winters.
1, do not think of wearing only gloves. Your body conserves core temperature by restricting blood circulation to the extremities (such as the lower limbs, arms, and legs). So even if your torso does not necessarily feel cold, think about adding an extra layer. If your core is "toasty", your body will be happy sending your hands plenty of warm blood! If it is not, then no matter how well insulated your hands are, they will not heat up quickly. A warmer torso means your hands will be more flexible against the cold.
Control body temperature
2, Wear warm clothes on the feet and control your body temperature by adding and removing tops. The latter is much easier to add / remove than the former.
3, try to move as much as you can because it is the most effective way to re-establish / maintain a comfortable temperature in a sufficiently insulated body.
4, plan regular but short breaks. You will be burning energy and losing moisture through breathing and sweat. This needs to be changed. Lack of any of these affects your brain, the first part of your body. You definitely need your decision to stay warm in the winter mountains!
5, keep the brakes brief - up to 10 minutes maximum. More than that and you may start to feel cold. I think a good balance is a 10 minute break after hiking 80 to 110 minutes. From stopping, eating sandwiches, to drinking, to actually running again, it takes 10 minutes easily.
6, instead of adding a warm layer to the exposed crest, think about doing it a little earlier. You have a final 5-minute climb to warm you back up. You may have a terrain facility for shelter, where that may not be an option at the summit.
7, discipline is important! Aim to be proactive rather than reactive. Be on top of your game! Your brain is the first organ in your body to be affected by cold and you need to make your decision. Don't get caught up in the hassle. Not necessarily waiting for the next hill climb to warm you up. Cold and hypothermia are insidious. If you are uncomfortable, seek shelter. If it is at hand, stop and deal with it! After 5 minutes you will start feeling much better. Sadly, people have died of hypothermia, while possibly enough to survive. Do not let the cold dominate you!
8, overheat? Wait and take off a layer. Later sweaty clothes can have a real chilling effect on the body.
9, invest in a good pair of winter gloves. Do not underestimate the agony of severe hot pain! The money spent upwards of £ 40 may appear to have been well spent. Liner gloves keep them hygienic.
10, an extra pair of adequate winter gloves is important. A glove can easily be lost in the air. An unprotected hand in the winter mountains of Scotland can mean frostbite. The Dachstein mitts are old school but they are cheap and they have a long standing reputation of working in Scotland.
Belle / Overlay Jacket
11, consider buying an overlay jacket. This is a very quick and efficient way to add a very warm layer when you take a break in the winter mountains.
12, think about packing a vacuum flask of hot drinks. If you are a little cold, there is nothing like the comfort of warm fluid uptake that is flowing to your core.
13, Keep the cold garter above the mouth in the coldest conditions and breathe with a cloth. It will act as a heat exchanger - extract heat from the exhausted air and use it to heat the inhaled air. It can be amazingly effective!
14, wear ski goggles (anti fog). These not only provide physical protection to the eyes but also help in keeping the face warm.
15, You will often wear your waterproof to windproofing as much as you would wear to waterproofing. Remember that rising air is more effective on cold winds than falling temperatures.
14, if you can then use the terrain to shelter it from the wind e.g. Walk down the lee of a ridge.
17, Winter Boots - In addition to the significant need to be sufficiently rigid, proper winter mountain boots will generally be better insulated.
18, wear warm (winter) hiking socks and make sure your shoes are big enough to accommodate them without affecting your circulation.
19, Gators - You need to make sure that there is no snow on the top of your shoe. This is one of the best ways to get wet (and possibly cold) feet. Generally, I am not a huge fan, but some type of garter is needed in the winter. In my experience the internal gaiters in some leg wears are not up to the mark. When intertwined with an appropriately sized conventional getter, they provided a very secure closure.