Although it isn't officially winter until December 21 (winter solstice), the weather gods don't care--they'll gleefully dump snow and freezing temperatures on us any day now (and have already got started in the mountains). Being prepared for safe winter hiking in the mountains of the northeast United States means having winter-worthy gear and a matching attitude. If you're contemplating winter hiking in the mountains for the first time in your life, unless you're a witless person you're probably at least a little anxious about preparation. But even experience doesn't always translate into preparedness: there's a little corner of hell reserved for us old timers called complacency. Whether new and anxious or old and careless, I hope you'll find this bulleted list helpful in your prep for the snow, ice and negative digits.
Gear inventory and prep:
Mental and physical preparedness: