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Choosing Winter Outdoor Clothing, Equipment and Accessories

August 9th, 2009

Although the British summer is still officially in full swing – even if nobody has told the weather – the winter sports scene is only just around the corner. Proving to be more popular each year, winter adventure activities are not for the faint-hearted. Indeed, winter sports including skiing and snowboarding are physically demanding pursuits that also require a disciplined mental approach. Additionally, activities such as winter hiking and mountain climbing offer their own set of challenges that can prove deadly when not undertaken in a professional and sensible manner.

Of course, the dangers of winter adventure activities are part of their wide appeal, as the fine line between fun and injury is essential for getting the adrenaline pumping. Moreover, the rush of skiing or snowboarding down a mountain having climbed up the other side is fraught with hazards, yet it is this sense of feeling truly alive that keeps people coming back for more each year. Indeed, winter adventure activities are a way of life for many people.

Choosing appropriate outdoor clothing and equipment, however, is not something that should be associated with any sense of risk. Those who partake in winter sports and adventures without the right equipment and clothing are those who put their lives on the line for no good reason. The first thing to note when choosing appropriate outdoor clothing is that the winter can give rise to truly unforgiving temperatures and weather conditions. What may seem like a gentle nature walk, for instance, can quickly turn into a battle of survival. Therefore, clothes should provide adequate thermal protection and insulation, be fully waterproof and yet also breathable and lightweight enough to ensure that sweat does not become a problem. Montane jackets are among the best in the business for these items of clothing. Furthermore, high quality hiking boots, gloves, hats and fully protective trousers are also essential.

Base layers such as Montane`s Bionic long sleeve t-shirt are also very good for regulating the body`s temperature whilst providing a supportive under layer of clothing. These also assist in muscle performance to a certain extent, are lightweight and help to wick sweat away from the body. On a freezing day at the top of a mountain somewhere in Scotland or Wales, base layers can provide an exceptional level of comfort, warmth and support.

Finally, much consideration must also be given to the choice of camping gear. Winter adventure activities will often be undertaken in cold, damp, icy or snowy conditions, whilst wind can be ferocious at a certain altitude. With all this in mind, it is essential that the winter outdoor adventure enthusiast is fully prepared to survive in extremely poor conditions. In this respect, Vango tents such as the Alpha 300 and Spectre 200 provide exceptional cover when required, although it is always necessary to buy a tent that is suitable for the expected conditions (ie., a mountain tent). Furthermore, the Vango Sumatra tent is ideal for the family outdoor adventure.

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