5 Activities to Pass the Winter
There's nothing worse than suffering through endless months of below freezing misery knowing that t-shirts, suntan lotion and ice cream cones are still a month or two off. After Christmas, passing time in the winter months seems a far greater challenge and the minuscule amounts of daylight and cabin fever certainly don't help.
But instead of giving into the self-destructive urge of sitting by the window and staring down the rain, February can be a great month for experiencing new things that allow you to explore different activities, be creative and become more knowledgeable.
Go Ice Climbing
Just like in summer, it's always good to take advantage of the opportunities the season provides. Though picnics in the park and trips to the beach may be out the question, there are many activities available that allow you to make use of all the winter-wear you've stocked in your wardrobe.
Ice-climbing exerts your mind and body as you navigate your way up the tall slippery surface, providing a great rush of adrenaline. Furthermore, Scotland is home to the largest indoor Ice Climbing facility in the world with walls reaching heights of up to 50ft and grades ranging from beginner to expert, making this activity a must try for the natives looking for a bit of adventure.
Discover New Music
Music is constantly evolving. Though iTunes, Spotify and Youtube are all great platforms for finding artists similar to those that you already like, nothing compares to going out there and discovering new acts first hand. Live events and festivals are held all year round with the aim of promoting the best new music of all genres
The west coast, in particular, is a stronghold of Scotland's finest folk music with plenty of live-music nights and festivals that explore the traditional elements of Scotland's musical heritage.
Bake or Cook Something Different
Experimenting with different recipes is a great way to introduce yourself to new flavours and improve your skill.
Cooking and baking can be enjoyed as a group or solo activity and is a great way to spark your creativity. Some dishes can take hours to prepare and it's not always possible to find the time to make them; so take advantage of the wet and windy days that leave you stuck indoors and experiment!
Skiing and Snowboarding
The popularity of these snow sports has escalated greatly in the last few years, and with its mountain-filled terrain and low temperatures Scotland is a natural choice for those wanting to give them a try without a costly trip to the Alps.
The west coast houses a handful of resorts, such as Nevis Range and Glencoe, known for their dramatic slopes and stunning views. With equipment hire and lessons available, this is an activity that can be enjoyed by people of all skill levels.
Have a TV Marathon
Sometimes it's just too difficult to give up the comfort of the mountain of blankets that you've been hibernating under since November, especially when the weather outside leaves little to be desired. Luckily, all your favourite TV shows are back on air after their Christmas break, allowing you your fix of your favourite characters, but waiting an entire week for the next episode can be tedious. So why not dust off some of your favourite boxsets( or maybe even try something new) and watch episode after episode of uninterrupted excellence?
We all have that show that we've never quite got round to watching; the one that we read about online and that your friends are always talking about. Now is a perfect time to see what all the fuss is about!
Of course there are many other activities that can help you get over your winter blues like reading, learning a new skill or organising your photo collection that all come with the added bonus of being productive way to spend the time.
It's always a good idea to keep an eye out for events happening in the local area; all year round you will find concerts, festivals, shows and celebrations are being hosted nearby that can open you up to new experiences, or at the very least help pass the day.
For those in and around the West Coast we would recommend checking out the Fort William Mountain Festival at the end of the month; hosting a range of workshops and exhibitions to celebrate the very best of mountain culture.