As we round out the month of October here in White Bird, the crisp notes of fall are starting to give way to the cold temperatures of winter. While we love the summer and all of the Hells Canyon adventures we offer during the warmer months, the colder temps don’t do much to dissuade us from going outside. That’s because we’ve figured out some simple ways to keep warm even as falling snow begins to replace falling leaves. Join Idaho’s number one adventure company as we outline our quick tips for staying warm this fall.

Trust in Your Layers

In a recent blog post, we walked you through every step of how to layer effectively for nearly any outdoor condition. The right outfit can leave you feeling brave even in the face of the most bitter fall winds. Remember to avoid wearing cotton while exploring this fall. While it might do a nice job of keeping you warm at home, if it gets wet while you’re outdoors, it’ll probably stay that way until you get home. 

We suggest wearing a long sleeve base layer, pack a fleece or insulated jacket, and a waterproof layer of some kind to ensure you can stay comfy. Don’t be afraid to put on and shed these layers as needed.

Stay Hydrated

Water gets cold in the fall, right? So why would we encourage you to drink more water? It’s because it goes a long way in keeping you warm. It’s easy to skip that extra bottle of water when you’re out and about in the cold. After all, the elements are keeping you cooler than your sweat likely is. But when you’re adequately hydrated, your body is doing more than just keeping you cool through sweat. It’s also keeping you warm. With enough fluid, your heart can pump blood easily to your extremities, which has the added benefit of protecting your core and internal organs.

When you’re dehydrated in the cold, your heart has to work harder to move blood to your extremities like your fingers and toes. It redirects the blood to your vital organs like your heart. Your vessels begin to stiffen up, and you experience a sense of cold faster. That means you get hypothermia faster too. Don’t get caught out in the cold. Make sure to stay hydrated during your fall adventures.

Pack a Snack

After you’ve polished off a bottle of water while out on your fall hike, make sure you take time for a snack break. Unlike exercising in warmer conditions, your body is burning extra calories to ensure that you don’t freeze. That makes snacks a vital part of any outdoor excursion in the fall.

Be smart in your snacking choices, however. You’ll want snacks that provide long-lasting energy. Consider options like chocolate, cheese, and nuts, which offer your body the fats and proteins it craves while you’re being active. 

Choose Your Seat Wisely

Who doesn’t love to sit on a log or boulder and enjoy the view during a break? It’s a classic part of the outdoor experience, but it could be sapping your body of warmth. As the temperatures cool, so too do the natural objects around you. When you sit on things like rocks and logs in the fall, your body begins to lose heat through thermal conduction. This means that you get colder faster.

If you have to sit down on your next outdoor adventure this fall, make sure to sit on a protective layer. You can get a specialty sit pad, or simply use an extra layer like your rain jacket. You can also sit on your pack to get a little padding for extra comfort.

Set the Right Pace

When it gets cold outside, our first instinct is to get moving quickly to build up some body heat. This is a great way to offset the cooling temperatures, but it can have an unexpected downside. If you work up a sweat, that perspiration can cool you off too much, leading to hypothermia. 

That’s why it’s critical to establish a pace that keeps you warm without making you sweaty. Your layering system will affect your pace as well, as if you dress in more layers, you may not need to move as quickly, and vice versa if you’re wearing lighter layers. 

Get Outside With Killgore Adventures

Just because the temperatures are dropping doesn’t mean you can’t get outside. Killgore Adventures offers a variety of ways to experience Hells Canyon all year-round. Our fishing adventures take you across the chilly rapids of the Salmon and Snake Rivers, while our ATV tours help you access some of the most remote regions of the canyon. Find out more about our adventures today and then book yours!