- Car rides with the windows down
- Tall, ice-filled drinks
- Swims with your horse
The pleasures of summer seem far, far away.
At my place, pasture walks are slow, laborious efforts of postholing, walking in snow that goes to my thighs and fills my boots. I’d like to say “I Love Winter,” but, truth be told, I’m not a huge fan. It does have merit, though:
Animals tracks tell stories we’d otherwise never read.
Hot pie and cocoa taste better.
It makes me really appreciate the other three seasons.
This year, Father Winter seems to have moved on from last year’s hobby of tormenting New England. (Read more here) Since November, he’s been schooling the Rockies with major snow dumpage. Ski slopes around here have had over 200 inches of snow (two hundred!). Parking lots consistently have two-inch layers of ice. Coyotes, deer and even bunnies are gravitating towards plowed roads and shoveled paths instead of suffering the aforementioned postholing.
For many of us, staying warm is the make-or-break element that determines whether these months are ones of enjoyment or drudgery.
Here are some toasty tips:
Layer up: long underwear tops and bottoms, hats and hoods, thermal insoles in your boots. Wool is a great layer and thanks to Ramblers Way can be worn right next to skin.
Turn on the heat: hand warmers, heated insoles and gloves, even hot beverages help out when and where layers cannot.
Eat well: substitute a protein bar for that donut and skim the sugar and syrup in your coffee. Your body will thank you.
Stay active: embrace shoveling as an aerobic activity and avoid the temptation to hibernate. Higher metabolism = more blood pumping (and that’s a good thing!)
Bath time: You’ll find a good soak will stay with you for hours, heating core to toes. It’s leverage that for a warmer morning or bedtime.
Little cheats: heat clothes in dryer or near a space heater, splurge on an electric blanket to take the chill of your bed before turning in, pick To Go mugs that aren’t so insulated. They can’t double as handwarmers.
Hug a horse. When the wind is howling and the temperature is heading downward like a kid on a playground slide, this method may be the most satisfying one for taking off the chill. Watch our happy video.