4 Ways to Get Your Fill of Chill this Winter
With California in ashes, Colorado staring wistfully at its flake-free skies and the entire East Coast digging out from last week’s insane snow siege, the weather so far this year has been, shall we say, not exactly normal. But instead of crying over spilled powder, we’d rather just adjust our plans—and our gear—to the weather we DO have. In the immortal words of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson: When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. From Kelty HQ to you, here are four unexpected ways to make the best of this weird, wild winter.
1. Build a Legendary Snow Fort
Got a wicked case of cabin fever, ‘cause it’s cold enough to freeze a lugee in mid-air? This is actually ideal snow fort weather. Ask any Eskimo: a well-engineered snow structure can keep you surprisingly warm, using human body heat alone. It’s also great opportunity to grab your sleeping bag and test the temperature rating—and maybe invite your hot neighbor in Apartment 3G if you need some additional warmth.
According to Popular Mechanics, your best bet is to approach your snow fort with a bricklayer’s eye; use a plastic shoebox to form bricks, then have the aforementioned hot neighbor use extra snow as mortar, to solidify the walls. For extra durability (and curb appeal), use a hand trowel to shape and smooth the exterior walls—then dump a bucket of cold water over the whole thing.
COOL TIP: For the perfect igloo picnic, pack things that taste best cold, like sushi and pale ale…and make your snow-dome-away-from-home more comfy with a built-in dinette set.
2. Take Your Pool Floats Sledding
Snow in FLORIDA? Yep, that’s apparently a thing now. So if you don’t live a place where you’ve got a whole closet—or even an entire garage—dedicated to toboggans and other winter gear, take heart. In a pinch, you can get an hour or so of killer sledding out of your inflatable pool toys.
Some floats are more durable than others, so not every hot dog will have its day. But there’s only one way to find out whether or not your inflatable cherries are the pits…and that’s to take ‘em for a snowy spin!
3. Nordic Ski Manhattan
Unless you happen to have a snowcat parked in your pricey monthly garage, it’s gonna be tough to enjoy those crazy-cold East Coast temps the way nature intended—on a ski slope. On the upside, though: the Big Apple avenues that are typically clogged with taxis and town cars are enticingly empty after an unexpected snow dump! So fill your thermos with Bloody Marys, shove a chorizo-egg burrito in your pocket or pack and strap on your nordies…this is Breakfast at Tiffany’s: 2018.
4. Have a Backyard S’morathon
With all respect to those Outside-mag-cover-modeling, polar-bear-challenge-loving, sub-zero-running freaks—not everybody wants to freeze off their naughty bits in the name of fitness. So, for those of us who’d rather die than lace up our Newtons in this uncivilized weather, we humbly suggest a cozier alternative to the winter marathon: the backyard s’morathon.
We’ll leave the particulars up to you, but the key ingredients are pretty simple: a crackling bonfire (or a grill), a welcoming assortment of comfy camp chairs, approximately 26.2 of your favorite people, lots of beer, and SO. MANY. S’MORES. If you must make everything a competition, you can always see who’s best at the 12-ounce curl.
West Coasters, kindly do us all a favor: skip the fire, stay indoors, and try this recipe for Oven-Baked S’mores Bars instead. Everybody else, get out there and PLAY.
Follow @keltybuilt on Instagram for more winter play ideas.