How to stay safe in the snow in Scotland
There is no need to stop being active in winter in the great outdoors, but it is a good idea to have a check list for staying safe in the snow. Here are five tips for staying safe in the snow in Scotland.
Check the weather
It might seem like an obvious thing to do, but it’s also vital. Before heading out for a day in the hills an mountains, have a good look at a range of weather forecast sites, such a the met office and MWIS.
Dress for the occasion
Layers, insulated mid-layers and waterproof outers are essential kit for winter activities. Take spares in your rucksack and always have hats, gloves and warm socks. Brighter clothing is a good idea if you will be running near traffic, for example, and crampons are a good idea for both walkers and runners.
If you plan to walk or ski in the Scottish winter mountains you need to know about the avalanche risks. You should attend an avalanche awareness course and also check theThe Scottish Avalanche Information Service before heading out. Crampons, ice axe and an avalanche beacon are vital kit.
Getting to and from the hills can be hazardous in winter. Check the forecasts, take your time and thing about carrying items such as snow chains or snow socks for your tyres to aid grip on icy and snowy roads.
Tell someone your plan
If the worst happens it’s important that other people know what your plans are. Tell them an approximate return time and where you will be walking, skiing or climbing. If you are not back at the agreed time they can make the decision to call emergency services.
In an emergency
Know what to do in an emergency in the hills. Scottish Mountain Rescue have a good advice section. Read this and learn what you should do if the worst happens.