I’m not going to give you excuses as to why I haven’t posted, especially when I said I’d post soon. Instead, I’m going to share my stories in a few separate posts. It has been busy, but I have got to try and get myself back into it.
So I’ve been in Montana since December, and I’ve learned a lot.
I’m going to start with some obvious basics for winter. If you’re from Florida and have never been to the midwest, you need to understand there is such a thing as being really cold.
If you think being in the 50s during off season is cold, you will think again after coming to Montana in the wintertime. I think the lowest I’ve seen it actually get here is -30 in the evening, but it doesn’t mean it can’t get colder. While googling the lowest temperature recorded, I found a page on montanakids.com which stated that “The coldest temperature ever recorded in Montana was -70 degrees below zero at Rogers Pass north of Helena, on January 20, 1954.”
With that in mind, consider wearing warm clothing, and be smart about it.
Have a warm jacket. In fact you should have two, you may want to double up on a cold day.
Buy a pair of long johns and wear them underneath your pants. You can always go to the bathroom and get them off if it gets too warm.
Make sure you have a good warm hat.
Keep a pair of warm gloves in your pocket, even if it’s a warm day.
If your shoes aren’t waterproof at the least, you’re gonna have a rough time.
In my case, I had a pair of gloves and a hat when I arrived here. I also had two great jackets.
I want to mention one of those jackets, made by Roper. This isn’t an advertisement or affiliate link. I seriously want to give kudos to whomever worked up the design of this jacket. I was able to wear just this in 20 degree weather and didn’t feel any outside weather on my torso. It’s also super lightweight, not one of those bulky jackets, so it was easy to pack it up as a backup.
If I see this in store, I’d buy another.
Unfortunately I do not think they sell it anymore (or took it down for the season change).
But if you see this jacket, I absolutely recommend it 100%.
I had to buy a pair of boots that could handle colder weather. I recommend looking at the tags. But if you plan on hiking, look harder and spend the money – Believe me. The boots I bought, didn’t help me on a hike. I “almost died” several times for a couple of photos and the photos didn’t even come out the best that I would have expected. I’ll have a post about this adventure soon.
Be smart. Buy SOME things in advance.
No, I’m not talking preparing for the apocalypse, but there are possibilities of avalanches occurring if you’re closer to the mountain. Colorado recently has had a few major warnings and this video was all over social media.
Buy a extra gallon of water or two and don’t touch them. Grab a couple of canned foods. It doesn’t hurt to have them. This way you have a minimum of two days or more depending on how much you keep. I personally have a go bag. I have water, cans of food and a can opener, an extra jacket and blanket, a flashlight, knife, matches, hand warmers, and a couple other things in there. It can’t hurt to be prepared, right? Worst thing that can happen is that you don’t need it. I may or may not post about what I have in my go bag later. I plan to revisit it for the summer months coming up.
Prepare and winterize your vehicle.
So my one regret is coming here with a RWD truck. It’s limited my ability to drive safely. Fun fact, Salt only works to a certain temperature, so the most part Montana does not salt their roads. I have snow tires, added 600 pounds to the back of my truck and I’m still sliding around at 20 MPH. I don’t have a heavy foot either. It’s a matter of taking the risk or just wing it walking to the bus stop and letting the bus driver deal with it. I’ll have a couple of stories about this in another post as well.
Well there you have it, my top three recommendations to start thinking about in terms of living in Montana in the winter as of this moment. It may be very different for others actually living here. I’m just passing by. Whats your take? Did I miss anything?