The Importance of Being Safe In the Snow

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Snow is a large part of winter it brings various opportunities for fun and entertainment during the winter season. Snow is a fun part of winter that many people look forward to because it enhances the winter effect on a particular place. It is however hazardous if a person does not take necessary safety measures. It is caused by low temperatures hence it is advisable for a person to keep warm due to the cold that poses fatal risks to a person’s health.

This can be done by wearing warm attire that will prevent a person from getting exposed to cold weather that causes health complications such as: Asthma, Pneumonia and Frostbite. These are health complications that can be avoided during the winter. A person can stay safe in the snow without getting exposed to low temperatures provided they stay warm at all times.

There are a number of ways a person can also keep safe in the snow through wearing protective gear. Protective gear can be worn by a person while they are in the snow. They protect an individual from falling down or getting hurt in case they fall. Such gear protects areas such as the head, elbows, knees and feet.

Keeping safe in the snow is an individual’s duty hence one should ensure that they live in a well monitored area where they can access help in case of any accidents while they are in the snow. Wearing shoes that have high friction is also a preventive measure a person can take to avoid falling down. Purchasing durable equipment is advisable in order for a person to use the equipment over a long period of time to stay safer for longer.

It is important for a person to keep safe in the snow by using practical gear that they can wear and operate easily in the snow. Some gear may be complex to understand which leads to many complication while using the preventing a person from making use of them effectively.

Buying high quality equipment is important while staying safe in the snow because maintaining safety in the snow enables a person to enjoy several advantages such as:

  • Staying safe in the snow enables a person to enjoy a healthy life without suffering any accidents
  • One can enjoy the winter weather without feeling restricted by the snow

Keeping safe in the snow plays a big role in the following areas:

  • Skating
  • Ice hockey
  • Home games and activities such as building a snow man
  • Surviving a blizzard
  • Carrying out regular activities such as shopping, going to work, travelling

 

Sledding 101

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One of the most basic, but also one of the most thrilling wintertime activities a person can partake in is sledding. The beauty of sledding is that it requires almost no skill or expertise to do, and is an almost guarantee to be a fun time for all, both young and old. It’s a timeless activity for anybody who grew up in a place that saw snow in the winter and has a few hills nearby. For those that didn’t, here’s what you need to know about sledding to get you started.

The first thing you need to know is that just about anything can be used as a sled. We’ve all seen pictures of the classic rectangular sled that’s generally made of wood, but there are also plastic saucer-shaped sleds. These have far less friction on the snow, which makes them travel faster, and they’re also harder to steer, which can add to the fun if you’re fine not having complete control over where you’re going. It’s also common practice for people to use inter-tubes commonly used in pools as sleds, as they work in a similar fashion to the saucers.

Of course, anything that will have reduced friction on top of snow and that can hold a person’s weight can be used as a sled. Cafeteria trays, garbage lids, and laundry baskets are all viable sled alternatives for people who don’t have a real sled at their disposal. If you want to go even more rogue, a garbage bag, an old tarp, or even a large piece of cardboard could be used. For those feeling adventurous, going down a hill without a sled could be an option. If you’re willing to brave the cold for a few seconds, heading down a hill face first while lying on your chest can be quite exhilarating.

Outside of the sled you use, the next most important thing in sledding is the hill you go down. It’s important to keep in mind that before you can go down a hill, you first must climb up that hill. You don’t want to pick a hill that’s too big, because it’ll be draining to climb up more than once or twice, and it’ll be harder to control your speed on the way down. The same goes for steep hills, which are harder to climb up, and can sometimes lead to traveling at unsafe speeds on the way down. The best hills to choose are ones that are relatively easy to climb and that flatten out at the bottom, allowing you to come to a smooth stop.

Finally, while sledding it’s always important to keep safety in mind. Sledding may seem like a safe activity, but injuries are more common than you think. It’s important to always dress appropriately, limiting the amount of skin that’s exposed, as sledding often involves rolling around in the snow at some point. It’s also a good idea to strap helmets onto younger participants, to ensure safety in case they fall off the sled at some point. If you keep safety in mind, find the right hill, and choose a sled that suits you, you’re bound to have an exciting time sledding, regardless of how much experience you have with one of winter’s greatest past times.

Image Credit Flickr User Skippy

Snowboarding 101

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Over the past decade, snowboarding has taken off and become one of the biggest fads in winter sports. Of course, if you’re not familiar with it, snowboarding can be an intimidating sport to break into, as it appears quite dangerous to the untrained eye. But snowboarding isn’t nearly as dangerous or difficult as it may look, and if you’re interested in giving snowboarding a try, here are a few pointers to get you started.

The first step to snowboarding is making sure you’re dressed appropriately. Wearing thermal layers under your snow pants and winter jacket is essential, but not to the point that you’re unable to move freely. Gloves, goggles, boots, and a helmet are also must-have items while snowboarding. It’s also important that everything you wear fits tight, especially your boots and helmet. You want boots that fit tight so there is no chance of falling out of them if you take a tumble, but not so tight that cut off circulation to your feet. Your helmet needs to be tight so that it won’t move around on your head, nor should your helmet ride low on your eyes, obstructing your vision.

Once you’re dressed appropriately, the next step is to pick out the style of snowboarding you want to try, as it will determine the type of snowboard you rent or buy. The most basic kind is an all-mountain or free ride snowboard, which are good for generating speed going downhill, while also having enough flexibility to turn and pull off a few tricks. Freestyle or technical snowboards and shorter, giving you more control and maneuverability, which can be advantageous for beginners. Finally, there are alpine or carve snowboards, which are long and thin, making them tough to control; however, they’re great if all you want to do is build up a lot of speed going downhill.

After you have your board and your style of snowboarding picked out, the next step is to determine your lead foot, which can be tricky, as it’s not necessarily your dominant foot. To help determine your lead foot, run across and smooth surface like hardwood and then slide, and whichever foot sticks out in front of the other is your best bet to be your lead foot while snowboarding. Knowing which is your lead foot will help you set the bindings on your board and stay on your feet better once you get out on the snow. Of course, if you’re not comfortable on your lead foot, it’s easy to make a switch if you think it’ll make a difference.

The next step is getting yourself to the top of the hill and giving it a try. Once you’re properly attired and strapped into your board, turn your snowboard so that the end of it is pointing downhill and then apply pressure by pretending that you’re squashing a bug with your lead foot in order to start moving the board forward. Make sure to keep your knees bent, and don’t feel like you need to lean forward, because once the board starts to inch forward, gravity will take care of the rest. From there, get ready to fall, because you’ll fall early and often while you get used to turning and stopping. With snowboarding, the first day is always the toughest, but if you get through it and still want to go snowboarding again, it won’t take long until you’re comfortable enough to make snowboarding a regular activity.

Skiing 101

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Skiing is the classic wintertime activity, enjoyed by millions who live in climates that produce snow on a regular basis, as well as those who are willing to travel to mountainous regions while on vacation. But for some reason, most don’t flock to skiing unless they’re introduced to it at a young age. It’s an activity that does require a few accessories and a little bit of know how, but there’s no reason why an amateur can’t pick it up with relative ease. For those that are looking for a new wintertime hobby, here is a beginner’s guide to skiing.

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The first thing you need to learn is how to distinguish trail difficulty. Every trail at a ski resort is given a difficulty rating compared to the other slopes at that resort, and you need to make sure you’re on a trail that suits your skill level. A green circle is the symbol for an easy trail, and should always be the first trail you try at a new resort. If you feel like you’ve mastered the green trails, you may want to move up to a blue square, which signals an intermediate trail that has a few more obstacles than the beginner trails. For more advanced skiers, there are difficult trails represented on maps with a black diamond or a double black diamond, but those are only for more experienced skiers.

Once on the slopes, it’s important that you keep a look out for the skiers in front of you. Skiers that are down slope from you always have the right of way, and because you can see them but they can’t see you, it’s vital that you do your best to remain a safe distance from them to avoid accidentally bumping into them, or worse. While it’s your responsibility to look out for the skiers in front of you, it’s also common courtesy to the skiers behind you not to stop in the middle of a slope and force them to avoid you as go by. Even if you’re a beginner and a little uncomfortable, just keep moving until the next section of the hill to avoid collisions between skiers.

To get comfortable going downhill in your skis, learn how to walk while standing in your skis. Put your skis in a parallel position and move by pushing yourself forward with your poles. This is the best way to simulate the act of going downhill without actually being on a slope. Once you’re comfortable doing this, try out a variety of techniques and positions on flat land that you’ll end up using while going downhill.

Once you’ve tried out a few basic maneuvers, test yourself on some common actions that you’ll need while going downhill. For instance, at some point you’ll want to stop, which you do by pointing your skis toward each other and then pushing your heels outward, but doing so without overlapping your skis, which often results in a loss of control. As a beginner, it’s also important that you learn how to fall, as that will likely become a common occurrence early in your tenure as a skier. If you need to make a quick movement, don’t try to swerve until you have more experience, simply try to fall uphill and land on your hip or shoulder, resisting the urge to catch yourself in order to prevent an injury.

After you have an understanding of the rules of the slopes and feel comfortable executing a few basic techniques and maneuvers, the final step is learning how to use a chairlift, which is a little more difficult than it looks from a distance. But once you learn how to get on the chairlift, there’s literally no looking back, as you’ll be on your way down the slopes.

Image Credit: Flick’r User Ines Sraiva

Shooting Rifles In the Snow – Tips For Cold Weather Shooting

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Snow (2)Even for experienced shooters, pulling off accurate shots in below-freezing temperatures can be tricky. If you’re not used to winter shooting, you’ll need to modify your approach a bit. Good cold weather shooting depends on at least five factors:

  • the right gloves
  • appropriate lubrication
  • sighting for low temperatures
  • high-performance ammunition
  • clean barrels

Let’s examine these factors to see how each impacts your shooting.

Invest in a Quality Pair of Gloves

Obviously, the gloves that you select for your winter shooting will have a big impact on trigger feel and accuracy. A pair of gloves of medium thickness made from a synthetic material is the ideal choice. Every cold-climate shooter has their own particular preference in this department, so it’s difficult to give a specific recommendation. Popular glove brands include SealSkinz and Outdoor Research.

Switch to a Cold-Weather Lubricant

You’ll need to change up your typical lubrication regimen depending on how cold it will be wherever you plan on shooting. A lot of popular lubricants can cause jams in colder weather. Try something like Otis’ Dry Lube instead. As an aside, ensure that your rifle achieves room temperature once you’re back inside before putting them away so that condensation doesn’t accumulate and cause corrosion.

Re-Sight Scopes for Colder Temperatures

If you zeroed your rifle at 200 yards at 70 °F, it’s a good idea to re-sight your scope at current sub-freezing temperatures. As we all know, heat causes metal to expand. Ergo, lower temperatures would cause anything metal to contract. Whether you’re talking about the best AR 15 Optics or scope for bolt-action models, you’ll need to make sure that your gear is acclimated to the cold.

Test Ammo for Cold Weather Performance

While most ammunition is engineered to deliver adequate performance throughout a wide temperature range, the cold can cause misfires. Test fire your ammunition of choice to ensure that it detonates consistently at low temperatures. In addition, it’ll take some time to get used to the lower velocities that cold, dense air will cause. At long distances, ammo will inevitably hit lower in colder climates.

Pay Special Attention to Cleaning Barrels

Everyone has a different take on how dirty is too dirty when it comes to their rifle’s barrel. Keep in mind that dirty barrels will have a disproportionate impact on accuracy at low temperatures due to the lower muzzle velocities experienced below zero. Keep a BoreSnake handy to give your barrel an impromptu sweep when you’re at the range or out in the field.

Consistent Bullseyes below Freezing

Between gloves, ammunition, finding the best mosin nagant rifle scope and general cleaning, there’s clearly a lot to consider when shooting in the snow. No one factor will ensure that you get the results you desire, which is why it’s important to take a comprehensive approach to the problem. Focus on the big picture and address each of the areas mentioned above to make shooting in cold weather more enjoyable and accurate.

Keeping Your Firearms Safe When Skiing

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Working hard year around is exhausting, which is why it is so nice to take a vacation. However, for those that prefer to keep their firearm with them and find themselves frequenting winter destinations like ski-resorts, the vacation can easily turn into an unpleasant occasion. Many ski-resorts are not designed to protect valuables like firearms. Even if left in your hotel room while you go skiing, it is possible that your firearm can be stolen. Luckily, there are ways to protect yourself and your possessions while you hit the slopes. Below are a few of the most popular recommendations.

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Keep Your Firearm Safe in a Safe

While your hotel room or resort does supply their own form of safes and security devices, sometimes it is just better to bring your own. Taking your own personal safe with you on vacation not only protects your firearm, but it also is a great way to keep your other personal items stored in a unit that you are comfortable with using and that you personally have access to. One popular example of a safe that you can take on the go is a nightstand gun safe. This tiny unit is compact, easy to carry around, and stores your firearm in a secure manner. You won’t need to worry about someone stealing what you own.

Vaults for Extra Protection

If keeping a small safe with you is not assuring another, another option that you have when skiing is to take a vault with you. While traveling with a vault is not very ideal if you are flying, it is an excellent option if you are driving to your ski location. A vault fits easily in your car trunk or backseat. Before choosing a vault though, make sure you do your research and check out the reviews by the gunsafecritic. These reviews will provide all of the information that you need to know about which vault is the best for your purpose.

Keep the Firearm in Your Hotel Safe

Lastly, if the above to options are absolutely impossible, the alternative is to use the safe in your hotel room. This should only be used as a last resort because there is a major risk involved. A hotel room safe is accessible to the staff in the building and is susceptible to break-in by guests. In addition, you usually cannot be fully confident that the hotel safe will completely secure your firearm. As with all firearms, you never want to leave it in a risky situation.

Summary

The next time you consider going skiing, taking steps like using a personal vault or safe will ensure that your firearm stays out of trouble and is completely safe from robbery. You really do not want something so valuable to find itself in the wrong hands. Before you decide which option is best for you, it is also advantageous to read reviews and to be certain that what you buy suites your firearm storage needs.

Cold Weather Hair Styling Tips

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Most of us tend to complain about our hair the most in the summer, when heat and humidity cause our hair to get frizzy, puffy and dry. However, the winter months are hardly a picnic. While our hair might be slightly more tolerable in the colder months, many of us can find our hair becoming dull due to the harsh, dry air. To help you maintain a beautiful mane throughout fall and winter, here are some cold weather hair styling tips for all hair types.

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Dry Hair? Try a Thick Mask

Dry hair can oftentimes feel extra brittle during the winter months. After all, there’s less moisture in the air, and many of us find ourselves indoors more. The key to keeping your hair moisturized is with a thick and rich hair mask. The best way to apply a hair mask is by slathering it on dry hair, covering your head with a shower cap or saran wrap and letting the mixture sit for 10-15 minutes. Afterwards, get into the shower and shampoo and condition as normal. You don’t have to invest in a pricy hair mask from the salon, either. Coconut oil is a simple household product that doubles as an amazing DIY mask.

Oily Hair? Treat The Problem At The Scalp

Some people will find that their oily scalp becomes more oily during the winter. This seems counter-intuitive; after all, shouldn’t oily hair be oilier when the weather is humid and drier when the weather is dry? Well, dry weather conditions can actually cause the skin to produce more oil, since it believes that the body is in drought-like conditions. Hence, oily hair types need a shampoo that will combat excess oil and leave them with a healthy and moisturized scalp. This article from the curling wand review experts at some online sites may offer a great list of shampoos designed specifically for treating oily hair.

Normal Hair? Do a Little of Both

Those who are lucky enough to have locks that fall into the “normal” hair category should take a cue from both dry and oily hair types. To keep your scalp healthy and vibrant, use a clarifying shampoo once a week that will remove any product build-up from your scalp. However, battle harsh winter air by also using a deep conditioning treatment once a week. Whenever you style your hair with heat, be sure to use a product that is designed to protect your hair from high temperatures. Heat styling is the number one reason why normal locks become dry and damaged.

If you take care of your hair and give it a little extra love in the shower, you’ll find that it will stay vibrant and healthy all throughout winter. Cold hair can be harsh, but with the right products and tips, your locks will stay lovely all throughout winter and fall.