OS GetOutside Champions tell us why map reading is so important to them...
5 top tips for walking in in winter with OS #GetOutside champion, and avid mountain explorer, Bonita Norris.
Over winter the world is full of new resolutions and people trying to work off some of their Christmas guilt. Promises of getting active, getting outside more and trying new things with undoubtedly be talked about by many of us, with lots of us promising to walk more.
The only problem is January falls in Winter, when for most of us in Britain, a good time is a warm drink, some cheesy telly and desperate attempt to stay warm. However we don’t think that winter weather should put you off getting outside and taking a walk.
Luckily for us our #GetOutside champion Bonita Norris has put together some top tips for walking in winter. Having become the youngest woman from the UK ever to climb Mount Everest when she was 22, Bonita is pretty well accomplished in winter activities and knows a thing or two about getting out in cold conditions.
Winter is beautiful and the best time of year to exercise. Some popular places are crazy busy in summer, but if you make the effort you can be rewarded with peace and quiet and a very different-looking place. And it feels like it’s all yours. As my Himalayan trips have been in March time, my training for these has been during the coldest months of the year. I taught myself to think of the cold as a positive thing and would purposely get outside and run on the coldest nights of the year. I can remember once thinking “I actually can run in minus five!” It was a revelation. But it doesn’t have to be about training for the Himalayas, these top tips should steer you through some winter walking in Britain too.
My advice would be to use more than one navigation method – have a back-up. Always take a spare GPS and keep the batteries warm by having them close to your skin (ladies, I put mine in my sports bra!). Always take a paper map if you’re going to be using a phone to navigate in case it loses charge. And make sure you can take a bearing with a compass and follow it successfully. Refresh your map-reading skills for every eventuality, not least because the British weather can change so quickly.
"Never underestimate the impact a cup of hot tea can have on you mentally and physically when you’re cold and a bit tired!"