Not only being cold is highly uncomfortable, it can be dangerous as well! But, as always, we will serve you some interesting fun facts and tips for you – learned and experienced first hand!
1.) Clothes – be like an onion!
First of all – 50 to 70% of your body heat gets lost through your head. And your amazing, rich, full and thick hair will not stop that. That is why you feel the cold much more if you don’t wear a cap!
Layers are your best friends! It can still feel cold if you wear a woolen jumper with nothing underneath because one loose layer won’t be able to retain heat as well.
The ”professional outdoor people” divide the layers on a base layer, middle layer and outer layer, according to the conditions you intend to meet.
The most recommended material is, of course, wool. Nothing holds the heat as good and since the materials are antibacterial, they do not smell. Silk also does a nice job.
The thing that has been saving my comfort is the skiing leggings under my pants! What appears to be a thin layer of fabric, actually saves me a great deal of trouble – despite the fact that I work in the office, the waiting for the bus and walking through the breeze can get annoying.
Recommended clothes and accessories
2.) A good jacket
Jacket is also important. For the city life in not freezing places like Oslo, a winter coat should do fine, but the further away from the sea you go, the more merciless climate you will encounter. Especially in the mountains, a proper down jacket will be a good investment. If you don’t absolutely hate the hood, I’d recommend you the one with it. That way you won’t lose the cap 😊 Mind that the jacket can resist the wind and is waterproof.
Good choice of hiking equipment
3.) Shoes – yes, they deserve a special paragraph!
All the layers in the world won’t help you if your feet are freezing. The warmest recommendation you can get is to invest into good shoes. The best option would be to have waterproof shoes specially made for heavy conditions, with a layer of warming fabric inside. There are quite some brands that offer shoes to walk on ice (one of them being called – self-explainatory – Icewalkers), having special spikes on the bottom side. One of the best purchases in my life have been the boots with swappable spike-mode – from this point on, watching unequipped people struggling with ice started being kind of fun to watch.
My Icewalker shoes – can’t praise them enough 🙂
Gloves, mittens, everything is better than nothing! Gloves are fantastic – you can also wear the ones where you can use your phone – but mittens hold the temperature even better!
However, if you’re visiting some nasty, icy climates far in the mountains, some special windproof gloves may not be a bad idea.
Do NOT underestimate the power of socks! Woolen socks can go a long way and they are terrific investment that will keep your feet warm and cozy! Keep in mind to purchase the shoe size accordingly, though.
100% wollen socks; one of the best Christmas gifts you can get to an outdoor person
But all of these are sooo expensive!
Wise people say ”You cry only once when you invest into quality.” and this is especially true when it comes to winter equipment. It may cost you, but you will spend the rest of your trip – and many trips to come – grateful to yourself for owning all of these! Still, I would warmly recommend you to watch out for the sales in the shops with sports equipment and check out the tax free shops. I got some crazy deals there!
5.) Get enough sleep
Very important! Get a good night rest! Not only it is beneficial to MANY of your body functions, it keeps you warm!
6.) Avoid alcohol and caffeine
Alcohol and caffeine – We know how delicious mulled wine is and how good the coffe feels. And it does keep you warm. But try to not abuse the alcohol and caffeine intake. Not only it dehydrates you, it causes your body to lose heat faster. Some of the compounds also may cause your blood vessels to constrict so your hands and feet can get colder faster.
Consider alcohol/caffeine-free warm drinks
7.) Keep your immune system strong
Now it is more important than ever not to forget to take in enough vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids, because the dry and cold weather alone can contribute to a great variety of health issues, especially the skin conditions. Make sure to eat healthy, therefore! If your skin is sensitive, make sure to use products for that. Especially dermatitis and angular cheilitis (inflammation of the corners of the lips) can get nasty. Keep your corticosteroids ready if you have issues with that! A coconut oil also helps a great deal.
Trout with potatoes and vegetables in Lillehammer hostel Stasjonen
If you followed our wisdom and want to try out your new equipment, check out our hostel in Dombås or plan the holidays at Lillehammer Hostel Stasjonen (fun fact: the dinner picture and Yassin sleeping were taken in this hostel 🙂 )
Written by Sandra Meglić, and EVS volunteer
Funded by Erasmus+ and Aktiv Ungdom
Picture 1 taken from this helpful blog