One of the best things about winter is having the opportunity to head to the mountains after a fresh snowfall for a beautiful day of skiing, snowboarding, or trekking. These exciting activities are a fantastic way to get your blood flowing and adrenaline pumping, and they sure beat sitting around the house watching reruns on TV.
But nothing can turn a great day into a horrific one faster than an accident, injury, or other mishap out on the slopes. That’s why it’s important to put safety first and be prepared for some of the most common calamities that might arise. Here are a handful of safety tips that all skiers, snowboarders, and trekkers should keep in mind for every outing:
- Dress in layers that can easily be removed or added according to changing weather conditions
- Prevent hypothermia by changing into warm, dry gear every day. Portable glove and boot dryers can help get your equipment ready to go in just a few short hours.
- Never take a jump blindly. Be sure to scout all landing areas and use a spotter if necessary
- When venturing to remote areas, tell others about your plans, route, and destination
- Heed all warning signs on the mountain and stay well clear of avalanche danger zones
- If possible, carry a small shovel and wear an avalanche beacon as added precautions
- Consider fitting your trekking boots with ice cleats to aid with traction and prevent falls
- Know your limits and don’t try anything reckless that might needlessly put yourself or others in danger
Not every accident can be avoided, but a “safety first” attitude, common sense, and good preparation will help prevent minor problems from turning into major catastrophes. Keep the above tips in mind the next time you hit the slopes so you can enjoy your day and return in one piece.