It is about time to finally stop receiving the winter so negatively and embrace its mystical beauty instead! Spending more time outdoors, even if everything is covered by the layer of snow, is beneficial in so many ways. Hiking during cold, winter months livens up not only your body but also your soul. Read on to find out why you shouldn’t skip hiking adventures this winter!
It Promotes Physical Health
Instead of shielding yourself from cold and gloomy weather and spending your free time indoors, why wouldn’t you opt outside this winter? With appropriate warm clothes and several safety tips, any sort of outdoor exercise is beneficial for your health. Hiking during winter months can boost your metabolism, strengthen your immune system, improve your sleep and it can even help you avoiding indoor germs and bacteria by breathing the fresh air. The worst thing you can do during the winter is to lock yourself between four walls, no matter how tempting it seems.
Seeing A Well-Known Landscape from a New Perspective
Although you have walked certain trails a dozen of times, hiking them during the winter months can be a completely different experience. Green meadows are now covered by pure white snow, mountain lakes are frozen, daylight is different. And what’s more, deciduous trees have stripped off their leaves rewarding you with magnificent and surreal panoramic views of surroundings.
Snowshoeing Positively Affects Your Mental Health
Has the winter blues struck you too? Your energy is at its lowest and you’ve been too lazy to get outside of your warm home? Believe it or not, this type of ‘depression’ is a real thing and it’s called Seasonal Affective Disorder. This condition is caused by the shortage of light which is related to our brain’s levels of serotonin – a neurotransmitter that plays a major role in maintaining the mood balance. That’s why it’s highly important to increase your exposure to natural light during winter – and hiking is a great way to keep your mood in balance.
It Challenges Your Skills and Abilities
Snow can dramatically change your favorite, well-known trails, making the path hardly visible. You will need to use your orientation skills or navigation devices. Snow can also slow you down, so winter hiking generally takes a lot of effort. Through winter hiking, you can develop various skills and learn a lot about hiking gear. You will learn how to walk in crampons, for example, or in what way the food for winter hike differs from the food you need on a hike during the summer.
It Can Help You Losing Weight
Hiking during winter doubles your workout. You burn more calories when it’s cold outside because your body needs to maintain its core temperature. That’s why snowshoeing food must provide a lot of fuel for your body, but if you want to lose some weight you can try to calculate the number of calories needed to boost your weight loss. However, be careful and don’t risk your health – if a hike is grueling, you’ll need more strength and more food to safely finish your hiking journey.
Encountering The Wildlife
Winter is the perfect season to get more insight into the wildlife of an area. The chances of encountering the wildlife are increased during winter because wild animals aren’t scared by the human noise while the silence helps you to spot them more easily than usual. Besides, these forest critters leave interesting tracks in the snow so you can learn to identify them by the footprints they leave.
Winter Is Perfect for Night Hiking
Winter days are short, so it’s recommended to start a hike as early as possible. But, if you still get caught by the dark on a full moon night, the light reflecting on the snow will make the landscape more illuminated and therefore easier to walk and get oriented. You can even plan your own full moon night hike with a purpose – just imagine the moment when a magical panorama of sparkling town down below in the valley opens upon your sight!
Less Crowds and Peaceful Solitude
The Alps are popular tourist destination during summer, but when the temperatures began to drop, trails are distinctively less crowded. The silence and solitude you sense on a trail when snowshoeing are closely related to the sense of freedom and the sense of peace – that’s acknowledged by every hiker who has tried winter hiking.
Winter is the perfect season to capture all that great photos you’ve been planning to shoot for a long time. Not only the landscape looks amazing, but there is a less chance of capturing someone’s backhead instead of the Matterhorn.
Would you like to experience the winter beauty of the Swiss Alps? Join us for our next WeHike to Le Reculet! Snowshoeing season is officially open!