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Keep Walking in the Cold - Choosing a Route

Tips For Safer Walking in Cold Weather


Updated August 28, 2014

Hoar Frost on Oregon Grape Bush

Hoar Frost on Oregon Grape Bush

Wendy Bumgardner © 2013

Hibernating is for bears, not walkers. Here are our best tips to keep walking no matter what the weather. First we'll select a good route, then discuss how to dress for the weather, then on to warm rewards and links.

Where You Walk

Start your walk into the wind: so you will finish with it at your back.

Sheltered routes: Select routes sheltered from the wind where possible.

Preventing slips: Select routes that are cleared of snow or ice or do not have standing puddles or mud slicks.

Beware of cars: Use caution when walking on roads, cars may have more difficulty in seeing you in rain or snow and maneuvering around you.

Use a running track: Check the local tracks to see if they may be a good outdoor or indoor alternative to the sidewalks or streets in poor weather.

Seek shelter: Plan for refuges along the way - is there a store, park restroom, or other place you can duck into to warm up during your walk if needed?

Walk the mall: Consider mall walking as a cold-weather alternative.

Treadmill: Consider treadmill walking as an alternative.

Prevent Slipping and Sliding

Walking poles: Give yourself extra stability and reduce the chances of slipping by using walking poles. Using a pair of fitness walking poles or trekking poles will also help you burn more calories and warm up faster.

Traction: Don't wear slick soled shoes if there will be wet or snowy pavement. For icy conditions, see Stabilicers or other slip-on ice cleats.

Next > What to Wear on Cold Weather Walks

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