Enjoying the great outdoors when it’s below zero

Some people refuse to go outside to recreate when the temperature dips below freezing. That happens way too often in our neck of the woods so people learn how to dress to stay warm. When you’re exercising outdoors whether it’s skiing, snowshoeing or walking to a fishing hole your body creates heat. The last thing you want to do is work up a sweat if you’re going to remain outside for long.

You need to dress in layers that will wick away moisture, insulate from the cold, and keep out the wind and rain. The layer closest to your body needs to wick sweat away from your body so your skin stays dry. A good set of long underwear made from breathable material does the trick.

The next layer you put on over your long underwear should keep you warm. A polar fleece if it’s really cold outside or something lighter if you know you’re going to be working really hard. It’s nice to wear a garment that has a zipper on it so you can let out heat as needed. If I start to sweat I either remove this layer or the layer I have on over it.

The outer layer acts more like a shield to protect you from wind or precipitation in the form of rain or snow. This doesn’t have to be a thick bulky piece of outerwear and it should be worn loosely. A full zipper and vents in the jacket are great for letting out extra heat.

Most of the time a hat is too much for me when I’m cross-country skiing. I usually wear a polar fleece headband and neck gator both of which can be removed if I get too warm. If your going to stop for a picnic or to fish then it’s a good idea to bring along an extra pair of socks and a dry layer in case you do work up a sweat.

Winter outside

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