Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Prepping for Winter - Part 2
As mentioned in the first part of Prepping for Winter, all outdoor experts whether talking about infants or adults, say "Cotton Kills." Cotton unlike polyester & wool fabrics does not wick moisture away from the body, nor does it dry fast. Having a cotton layer, especially up against your skin is an invitation to hypothermia and frostbite when you are active. Sweat saturates the layer and clings to your skin, subsequently freezing from the arctic air.
Loose layers are key to feeling comfortable and allow you to regulate you body's temperature. Tight fitting clothing can decrease circulation, inviting frostbite to spread more quickly.
Footing - trails, sidewalks and even parking lots are a dangerous place, especially in the freezing/thawing months of early winter (fall for people in the Lower 48) and spring. When ever you are carrying or wearing a child it is important to consider wearing ice grippers. You go down, so does your kiddo. Some sneakers like Ice Bugs come with studs built into the treads of the shoe, others fit over the sole of your shoe & there are services provided by local stores, such as Skinny Raven, to put studs in an old pair of running shoes or boots.
Gloves & Mitts - Like baselayers, you don't want cotton or any material that is slow to dry. Mittens are the most effective tool to keep you hands warm and provide the best space for hand warmers. Gloves separate the fingers which looses heat. Mits are the ultimate example of power in numbers, however you do loose some dexterity.
While it is true you pay for what you get, there are reasonably priced layer options at any department store and at lots of second hand stores. Good gear is an investment that should last you years.