Britain: will it snow and what can we do to prepare?

As the weather worsens Camping World takes a look at our options as the snow hits Britain again
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* Snow
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* November
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* Aldershot - Hants - England

Nov. 14, 2011 - PRLog -- As the weather worsens across the country, Camping World takes a look at our options as the snow hits Britain again

Far from being an occassional flurry to hit the British Isles once every few years, the evidence from the last few winters seems to show that Britain is now stuck in a cycle of harsh winters and heavy annual snowfall. But the question we have to ask ourselves is this: what have we now learned, and how can we prepare?

First up: when exactly is it going to snow?

There's no point in running around in ski jackets and crampons in October - you'll just get wedged into your seat on the bus and hobble around like you've got massive corns on the feet. However, as much as we can make light of this question, the fact remains that it is notoriously difficult to predict when - and indeed if - it is going to snow, and whether it is going to be a problem.

Weather reporting through channels available to the public can be fairly innaccurate at best, or even downright vague, but our top tip is to look out for the gritter lorries on the roads. With access to some of the best data the Met Office can provide, the gritters come out in force just before any chance of snow to try and keep the roads clear should it happen. Generally when the temperatures drop to near freezing the gritters are sent out, so if you see them on a road near you it's probably best to prepare for the worst, pack your winter survival bag and sling your snow boots into your boot.

So just how can you prepare for snow?

It is important to consider the difference between necessary preparation and sensible preparation. Extreme cold can be dangerous and there are certain precautions everyone should take: if you are travelling anywhere by car and there's the chance of snow you may get stuck on the roads and have to wait, often through no fault of your own. Make sure you are prepared for long periods in the cold by keeping the following in your car: a blanket or other warm insulation is vital for staving off hypothermia; it might be tempting to jump in the car in a t-shirt and let the car's heating do the job for you but if you're stuck in a tailback with limited fuel this might not be an option. Cars can cool down very quickly and something as simple as a sleeping bag in the boot could be a lifesaver.

Click here to visit our Winter Ski Store for all this and more:

Make sure you have some sort of emergency food stashed in the car, as well as a bottle of water (although at a push you can drink snow a la Bear Grylls). Absolutely vital for a long period stranded in your car, a chocolate ration and drinking water keeps your energy levels up and may prevent the need for striking out away from your standed vehicle and putting yourself in a potentially dangerous situation. Another top tip is to pack a can of soup - it can be eaten hot or cold and doesn't go off.

Three other car-related bits of kit finish our list of necessary preparations: an emergency snow shovel is handy for both in the car and at home, rope can be very useful when you're stuck, and some jump leads can get you going when you've left the light on all night. Hopefully these three things should be enough to help you or another stranded motorist out of a fix and get moving again.

And so on to sensible precautions

Sensible precautions are really up to you, they are not vital but may go a long way to making life in freezing conditions much more bearable. Top of the list comes some purpose-made snow boots. Where once these were rare in the UK, they are now available to suit all budgets in many different styles and fashions. Dedicated snow boots offer great protection from the endless freezing slush seen on streets all over Britain, and are designed to offer good insulation to prevent you getting frostbite in your feet. After a few years of braving it and relying on our wellington boots, British people are now waking up in their thousands to more practical footwear that makes it easier to get around. Snow boots now come with anything from thick wool liners to integrated snow studs and some can even be worn comfortably in temperatures rated down to -20 degrees.

Last stop for footwear preparations are temporary ice grippers - another great product to come to the UK market, ice grippers are removable rubber crampons that fit over the sole of your shoe or boot and provide you with the ability to walk safely on ice. At £11.99 these great little inventions are a small price to pay for being able to walk to work or the shops without falling over.

Of course, all the traditional bits of kit are very useful - a mid-range ski jacket provides all the waterproofing and insulation you need for extreme British weather conditions, and good gloves, fleece layers, warm hats and scarves are a must  in winter - a cheater's option for the scarf might be a snood or neck chube which negates the hassle of it flapping round your face.

So what else?

Now the fun bit - when the schools are closed and you can't make it to work, what else is there to do in when it's snowing than going sledging? Of course by the time you think of it, so has everybody else and everywhere that had them in stock has sold out of all their sledges and you're laft trying to adapt the wheelie bin into something that can carry you and the kids safely down a hill in the local park.

This year Britain is fortunate in that the preceding two year's of bad weather has meant many retailers are fully stocked with sledges and toboggans of all shapes and sizes so - from the very cheap to the really quite expensive - you're sure to find a bargain sledge somewhere. But, it would be very sensible to act in advance of the snow and be prepared for once; there are many pre-snow discounts on sledges and snow gear which are sure to dry up when demand peaks. Mums and mums-soon-to-be especially will find it difficult to get around with small children as strollers and buggies will get stuck, the answer is a special baby sledge with seat straps to allow them to simply pull-along behind (combine with a kids snow suit for maximum comfort).

Finally, a bit of subtle protection to keep you warm all day is a good set of thermals - available for men, women and kids, thermals provide a great underlayer and are engineered for comfort and breathability. So much better than a vest for keeping the cold at bay and ideal for winter. Combine with some ski socks for ultimate comfort.

Click here to visit our Winter Ski Store for all this and more:

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Tags:Snow, Britain, Will, November, December, January, Febuary, Prepare, Survival, Emergency, Sledge, Cheap, Car
Industry:Retail, Shopping, Lifestyle
Location:Aldershot - Hants - England
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