Winter Skills Snow Cave!
If you want the ultimate winter challenge then get out and build a snow hole this winter…
- One shovel (or the more the merrier)
- Survival bag (you many need to place this on the floor in order to pull snow away from the hole?)
- Plenty of time!
Find a drift of snow that’s not an avalanche risk. I could explain in detail how you need to dig in and create platforms and then fill in, etc, but instead here’s Ray Mears building one. He knows his snow holes a bit better than I do! At first you’ll think that its not relevant to the UK as he digs down into 2 metres of snow! But once he’s done that, he’s got a wall of snow in front of him and that’s when the fun starts. Treat that as the front of your drift.
Once you’ve built it – here’s what it’s like inside. The snow should insulate the hole and keep you warm, but you’ll also need to make sure you’ve got a bivvy bag or similar to keep your sleeping bag from getting damp. Remember that vent hole with the walking pole and take care to ensure plenty of ventilation in your snow hole. Getting sealed in is a real possibility if it’s snowing heavily over night.
Have fun and take care!
Make sure you keep an eye out for our own Snow Hole Challenge, providing we get enough Snow again this year!!
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siDave Roberts founded Walk Eryri in 2004, with the aim of providing routes that are off the beaten track. Walk Eryri is now part of Mud and Routes which continues to provide more off beat routes and walks in Snowdonia and beyond. Dave has been exploring the hills of Eryri for over thirty years, and is a qualified Mountain Leader. Dave also established Walk up Snowdon, Walk up Scafell Pike and Walk up Ben Nevis just to mention a few.