5 Critical Tips for Winter Hiking Safety

Top Tips for Safe and Comfortable Winter Hiking

5 Critical Tips for Winter Hiking Safety

 

While many avid hikers may wait until spring to take the trail once more, there are plenty of advantages to hiking in winter. The winter landscape can be quite beautiful to explore, and emptier trails result in greater opportunity for solitude in nature.

However, hiking in the winter provides a unique set of challenges when it comes to safety. Consider the following tips to stay safe should you choose to hike in winter.

1) Avoid Wearing Cotton

It goes without saying that you’ll need plenty of warm layers, but you should avoid cotton at all costs. Once wet, cotton will sap your body heat quickly, and you’ll run the risk of becoming hypothermic.

Even if you are hiking in a dry environment, cotton clothing can still become wet with sweat. Opt instead for wool and synthetic layers. Depending on how wet your hiking climate is, down layers should be avoided as well, as these lose their insulating properties when damp.

2) Plan a Shorter Route

Winter months mean shorter days. You simply won’t be able to cover as much ground as you can during generous summer days.

Don’t overextend your mileage. Instead, stick to shorter routes that will allow you to reach the trailhead before dark.

3) Beware of Avalanche Advisories

Especially in mountainous regions, be aware of which trails and areas are at risk for avalanches. Avalanches are extremely dangerous, so these areas are best avoided.

Avoiding avalanches will require local knowledge and research, so do your due diligence before hitting the trail.

5 Critical Tips for Winter Hiking Safety beijing

 

4) Bring Enough Water

It’s easy to remember to drink enough in summer, and it’s just as easy to forget in winter. Nevertheless, your body needs water.

Make sure to pack a minimum of 2 liters for a day hike, and remind yourself to drink regularly. Many hikers enjoy bringing a hot thermos of tea, which is a nice way to stay hydrated on the trail in winter.

5) Bring a Flashlight and Extra Batteries

The winter months mean limited daylight, and you don’t want to risk being lost in the dark. While you should plan your route and mileage to be off the trail before sunset, prepare for the worst.

After all, an injury or a wrong turn may waylay you. Always pack a working flashlight and extra batteries to avoid being stuck on the trail overnight.

Closing Thoughts

Hiking is a wonderful way to engage with the natural world year-round. While many hikers stay off the trails during the winter season, many trails can still be enjoyed in colder weather.

To stay safe, hikers will need to plan their route, wardrobe, and hiking supplies accordingly.

Man in yellow jacket climbs the rocks in the winter mountains

 

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What to Do When Your Airline Loses Your Luggage

Things You Need to do If an Airline Loses Your Luggage

What to Do When Your Airline Loses Your Luggage

 

Whether it’s a layover in Beijing or Great Wall hiking trip, it’s an awful experience when an airline loses your luggage. To help you navigate these tricky waters, we’ve compiled everything you need to know for when your luggage gets lost.

Lost Luggage

There was a time when lost or misplaced luggage was as common as catching a cold. However, the airlines have sharpened their game over the past two decades. Misplaced luggage today is a rare occurrence. Unfortunately, it does still happen from time to time.

The Three Important Steps

If your airline has lost your luggage, the first thing to do is not panic. Stay calm. You may already be feeling tired and stressed after the flight, and adding to it will not solve anything.

Instead, try to follow the following steps that will help you get your belongings back:

  • Contract the Service Desk ASAP
  • Clarify
  • Compensation
What to Do When Your Airline Loses Your Luggage China

 

1. Contract the Service Desk ASAP

Every airline has a service desk for lost/misplaced luggage. The first thing you need to do is head over and alert the assistant on duty. They will ask for your boarding pass that contains the tag number of the checked-in luggage.

It is vital that you notify them immediately. The sooner they spring into action, the faster your luggage will be found.

2. Clarify

Once you have registered the complaint, clarify with the assistant when your luggage will be retrieved by. In most cases, it will take no more than 24 hours. Also, check if the luggage will be delivered to your hotel room or if you will need to pick it up.

Some airlines may charge you a fee for the delivery. Remember to note down the baggage tag numbers, tracking ID, and the assistant’s name when you hand over your boarding pass.

Things You Need to do If an Airline Loses Your Luggage

 

3. Compensation

Most bags are not lost, merely delayed. If the airline does not return your bag within 30 days, you should proceed with a compensation claim. This can be a bit of a hassle as airlines are not easily parted with their money, but it may be the only way to make things right.

At this point, you will most likely need to provide further information about the contents of the bag, especially if any valuables were lost.

In Closing

Though lost luggage can put a dampener on your vacation, it doesn’t have to be the end of the world. By following the steps outlined in this article, your luggage may soon be returned to you.

What to Do When Your Airline Loses Luggage

 

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9 Best Foods to Take on A Great Wall Day Hike

Best Snacks to Eat Before, During, After a Day Hike

best food for a great wall hike

 

When you’re preparing to go out for a Great Wall day hike, whether it’s an easy mile or a more strenuous 8-mile hike, taking enough (and the right) snacks to keep your energy levels up is a priority. Check out these 9 foods you should consider taking on your upcoming trip, or purchasing once you arrive at the many markets in Beijing.

1. Salted Roasted Mixed Nuts

The salt adds flavor while roasting brings out the natural oils for flavor. Mixed nuts ensure you won’t get bored with your choice of high protein, vegan-friendly snack.

2. Fresh Fruit

Forget flying with fresh fruit. That is not going to fly with the spoilage rate. Instead, plan on purchasing fresh fruit at vendors in Beijing near your accommodations. There are markets in all of the neighborhoods near Jiankou, Mutianyu, Gubeikou or Jinshanling. Have food containers to hold your fresh fruit to protect against spoilage and bruising.

3. Dried Fruit and Trail Mix

If you are interested in having a sweet treat that offers more fiber, vitamins, and minerals compared to candy—go with dried fruit. Popular picks for travelers include dried and sweetened cranberries, blueberries, cherries, and apricots. You can also find dried mango and raisins.

4. Chocolate

Chocolate is wonderful if you choose the right type. Avoid chocolate with a high butterfat content, such as white chocolate, because it will melt more rapidly.

Consider taking cacao nibs, which are unprocessed pieces of the cacao nut used to make chocolate. These do not melt under normal heat. Yet cacao nibs offer a high nutrient content with 21 percent of daily value of iron and two grams of protein in seven teaspoons.

best food great wall hike

 

5. Gummy Candy

For a sweet treat and afternoon pick me up, bring along some gummy candy or jelly sweets.

6. Healthy Seeds

One of the increasingly popular health foods on the market is seeds. Hemp, pumpkin, sesame, and poppy seeds are just some of the more common seeds you can carry hiking and eat raw.

Add them to your trail mix if you’d like. Other popular seeds that people often mistake as grains are quinoa and buckwheat, which are typically served cooked.

7. Hard Cheese

Cheese offers a rich source of protein, but you have to choose the right type of cheese for your hike. Why and what is hard cheese? Hard cheeses include Pecorino Romano, Parmigiano-Reggiano, Manchego, and Jarlsberg cheese. Then you have the more popular hard cheeses of Cheddar, Gouda, Provolone, and Gruyere.

Each of these cheeses will withstand the temperatures of the Great Wall better than meltable soft cheeses including Mozzarella, Chevre, Brie, and Havarti.

8. Cold Meats

For you carnivores out there, cold meats including salami, pastrami, and summer sausage are convenient for hiking the Great Wall of China. You can get away without having refrigeration and your meat stays edible.

9. Hard Boiled Eggs

Another high protein source, which is also vegetarian-friendly, is hard-boiled eggs. One egg has six grams of protein, less than 100 calories, and a variety of vitamins and minerals. Plus, once boiled, a hard-boiled egg handles hiking very well.

snacks for great wall hike

 

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Happy (Chinese) New Year 2019!

Happy (Chinese) New Year 2019

 

Wow, what a year! If you are reading this, it means you were part of an incredible year for WGW Adventure Tours. 2018 was big for us. Our team grew immensely, and had a blast while doing it.

Our mission is to help people get into wild Great Wall, inspire travelers to discover China. As 2018 comes to a close, WGW Adventure Tours wants to take a moment to thank you for making of 2018 a memorable year!

We had the privilege to host you in Beijing and we hope you made many memories that will last a lifetime and new friends along the way. We can’t thank you enough for visiting us, supporting us, following us, and hiking with us.

Here’s a little look at some of the most special moments for us as we approach 2019, the year of the Pig…

Video

We love travel videos, they are inspiring, beautiful and always put you in a good mood. Travel videos have the effect of igniting the wanderlust inside all of us, inspiring us, and encouraging us to start doing something new. Making a great travel video is a good way to show people how awesome our tours is. Check out the video created by our guests Alex & MJ while hiking Jinshanling Great Wall.

Blog

We’re in love with a handful of new blogs we created. By the end of 2018 we have published over 260 blog posts to help you travel better. If you haven’t read these yet, take a few minutes to read. You won’t be disappointed.

Facebook

In 2019 we will continue to intensify our Social Media presence. Therefore, please feel free to visit us on Facebook Page! Since we joined Facebook in 2013 we have attracted over 30,000 followers and would like to coordinate our travel ideas, tips and information about Great Wall hiking, city tours more frequently. Follow us on Facebook.

New Tours

Don’t worry, we’re never going to stop expanding to offer you the best opportunity to hike the Great Wall of China. We have added 2 new hikes to our tour programme,

Look out for these tours in 2019.

Happy New Year from all of us at WGW Adventure Tours

Chinese New Year is the most important festival in China, and no matter where you are in the world, we want to wish you there happiest and most prosperous new year. Looking forward to seeing you on one of our tours in 2019.

Happy (Chinese) New Year 2019!

 

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8 Mistakes Travelers Often Make on Their First Trip to Beijing

Top 8 Travel Mistakes in Beijing and How to Avoid Them

Young couple traveling take a selfie portrait with the View of the hall of prayer for good harvest of Temple of Heaven,Beijing

 

When going to Beijing  for the first time, the last thing you want to do is make mistakes. Yet season after season, travelers are caught doing the same silly things. Don’t be that traveler with these eight mistakes you want to avoid when visiting Beijing and the Great Wall for the first time.

Mistake #1: Not Enough Time in Beijing

When you visit the Great Wall of China you want to give yourself a few buffer days. Think about it. You’re most likely flying from halfway across the globe. Jet lag is real and it can affect you in the weirdest of ways.

Plus, once you arrive in Beijing, also home to the Temple of Heaven, Summer Palace, and the Palace Museum, has so much to explore in and of itself. Give yourself three days at minimum to see the city before or after your hike along the Great Wall.

Mistake #2: Booking a Hotel in the Wrong Area

Beijing is big. It’s also congested. Therefore, it really makes sense to consider the location of your hotel carefully, staying as close to your intended activities as possible.

Good location hotels offers you the best areas to stay in major tourist destinations.  The last thing you want to be doing is wasting time in traffic jams when you could be out having fun.

GUANGZHOU, CHINA - JANUARY 2, 2018: Beijing Road Pedestrian Street in old part of Guangzhou crowded with people and decorated for Spring festival at night

 

Mistake #3: Not Buying a Local SIM card to Use While in Beijing

International roaming changes can cost a fortune, so make sure you pick up a Beijing SIM card to use while you’re here. There are two primary companies offering Chinese SIM card: China Unicom and China Mobile.

Mistake #4: Underestimating Beijing’s Notorious Traffic

Rush hour traffic in Beijing can be gridlock. Make sure you leave yourself plenty of time when travelling out and about, especially to the airport. Missing dinner plans is regretful, but missing your flight is a serious pain. Beijing Airport Express Train is the preferred way to travel around downtown when you’re in a hurry.

Mistake #5: Not Buying Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is more than just protection in case you miss your flight. It is a small investment that can save you from moderate financial loss. You can get several types of travel insurance covering medical issues, baggage, cancellation, and even all of the above.

Most people are overwhelmed by the right type of insurance to get for a particular trip. Typically, the more you spend on a trip, the more insurance coverage you want to get. For instance, an all-inclusive tour abroad to China and the Great Wall would warrant comprehensive coverage.

The Forbidden City in China in the new year's night,the Imperial Palace.

 

Mistake #6: Exchanging Large Sums of Currency Before Your Trip

If you are one of those travelers who exchanges thousands of US dollars at their local bank before leaving the country, try another tactic. Wait until you arrive in the country of your destination to exchange the majority of your money via an ATM. You will get the best exchange rate and be less at risk of getting robbed of all of your cash.

Go ahead and carry about the equivalent of $150 in their local currency, just to be on the safe side. This way you have some spending money for a taxi, food, and emergencies when you land.

Mistake #7: Not Bargaining (or Bargaining Too Much)

Americans tend to lack the ability to bargain for great deals. Yet in some countries including in China, bargaining and haggling is part of the cultural norm. Not brushed up on your bargaining skills? Hire a tour guide.

Mistake #8: Not Being Adventurous Enough

Beijing is a safe city and, as long as you keep your wits about you, you can really explore this city from top to bottom. Don’t stick to shopping mall meals and western pubs, especially if it’s your first time to Beijing. Follow your feet and see where they take you in Beijing – you’re bound to see something remarkable! You can hike the Great Wall of China if you are adventurous enough.

awesome great wall with great weather

 

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