Beware of what lies below the snow’s surface.
Snow falls differently depending on location. If you’re in a coastal climate closer to the ocean, where snow is stickier and full of “pillows,” you should always be wary of any kind of bump in the snow. Travis cautions that you never know when a sharp log or rock is waiting just beneath the surface. Same with higher and drier locations like the Rocky Mountains, where the snow, with a little bit of wind, can lightly cover a jagged cliff band.
Another inconspicuous hazard is the threat of deep tree wells. As snow falls on a tree, the branches collect most of it before it hits the ground, which inevitably creates a hole around the trunk. But if you fall head-first into a tree well, Travis advises you to wait for a friend’s help and not move. “The more you struggle, the more snow falls into the hole and engulfs your body,” he says. “This is another reason the buddy system is great – so they can yank you out of there.”Back to top