Ames Winter Weather Tips

I came from Cedar Falls, Iowa. Public transportation isn’t so big over there, so I’m used to driving around to get everywhere. Sometimes I didn’t even wear a coat in the winter because the only time I spent outside was from my house to my car. Now that I’m in Ames and I rely on walking and public transportation to get from place to place, I find that I am spending a lot more time outdoors. And I will say this: Iowa winters are so cold! Even as an Iowan, I am shocked.

Most days, the weather is bearable. However, when it’s snowing horizontally and below freezing temperatures outside, getting from place to place becomes a lot more difficult. If you’re like me who walks outside a lot, I wanted to share some tips I’ve learned over time to survive the winter weather.

  1. Layer, layer, layer! I often have to walk outside for a collective time of 1 hour or more, and that’s not fun when it’s only 5 degrees outside (literally!)
    • Put on tights under my pants, then
    • Wear a tank top or long-sleeved plain tee under my t-shirt, then
    • Put a sweater on over my t-shirt, then
    • Wrap a sweater on, and
    • If it’s really cold and windy, then I will put a jacket on over that, and finally
    • Wear my winter coat and fight through the cold.
  2. Carry around a hot drink in a thermos! I like to keep hot green tea with me at all times. I find that it really warms me up and gives me energy. Plus, I love the pink color of my thermos.If you have long hair, tie it up! Whenever I leave my hair down while it’s snowing, my hair gets drenched by the snow and then freezes up when I go back outside. Alternatively, wear a hat!
  3. Take a warm bath when you get back home. It’s easy to get sick when it’s cold, but being sick means having to miss classes and work. I found that if I hop in the bath when I get home from a long day of being outside, it really helps prevent me from getting sick. I also like to add salts and essential oils for fun.
  4. Rest and stay safe if you need to! If there’s a winter snowstorm going on outside, it’s probably better for you to stay at home. I don’t know about you, but sometimes my car doesn’t start when it’s too cold outside and the roads/sidewalks haven’t been cleared yet, which makes it dangerous to travel around outside. After trying to walk home with 5 inches of snow on the ground and the wind at 20mph, I decided that sometimes it’s just better not to take that risk. Your professors and bosses will understand.

Always stay safe, stay warm, and enjoy your winter! It’s annoying at times, but it’s also beautiful. I love winter time because it allows me to light lots of candles, drink lots of hot chocolate and tea, and wear all of my favorite sweaters. Enjoy it while you can, and good luck!

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