Sunday, January 23, 2011

Winter Warmth on a Chicago Bears Weekend


This is a historic Chicago weekend.  For the first time since 1941, the Chicago Bears will play the Green Bay Packers in the NFL playoffs. Although I'm not really a sports fan, as a Chicagoan I feel intense allegiance to our teams. Does that mean I'll be at Soldier Field watching the Monsters of the Midway in snow and 5 degree wind chill? Umm, no.  What I have been doing is handing out advice to pitiful travelers trying to figure out how to stay warm on a  January Chicago Bears weekend.

Besides the obvious, (a real coat not a light jacket or hoodie, a hat to cover your ears, gloves and boots.) I recommend a secret weapon I actually discovered in Door County, Wisconsin. I was snow shoeing in 8 foot drifts and 2 degree temperatures and despite doubled-up insulated gloves, my fingers were cold.  My guided offered me a pack of hand warmers. I had seen these stacked up in Chicago drug stores but never took them seriously. Surely, somebody who's never lived through a Chicago winter came up with this scam to squeeze a few dollars from the desperate and freezing. I shook the small, white, packet and placed it in my glove and I was amazed. Warmth oozed from the packet and my hands felt like I had placed them in a warm oven. The heat lasted the entire three hours I was outside.

These non-toxic, air-activated, miracles last 7-hours straight and are  for one-time use. I prefer to keep the warmers in my pocket or between layered gloves because they do get really warm. On the same trip, I also discovered toe warmers, which can be shoved in your boots for toasty heat. If you're standing or walking outside during a Chicago winter, hand and toe warmers are essential.  The Grabber company also offers foot and body warmers but I've never tried them. Somehow, I think the excitement of watching the Bears trounce the Packers, as they did during that last playoff, will generate enough heat to keep most bodies warm.



13 comments:

Wendy said...

I could use a pack of toes warmers for the chill in NYC at the moment.

Fly Girl said...

Wendy, I know what you mean. Right now, I just double my socks because it's a pain to waste the warmers if you're only going to be outside for less than 3 hours.

——>Katie Bolinger said...

Door County is in Wisconsin sweetie. I know some people think all good things outside of Chicago are in Michigan so it's an honest mistake. I have a few of these for the kid to go sledding but it's been to cold to even consider such a trip. It's good to know they work.

Fly Girl said...

Oops, I think that was a subconsious slip. Didn't want to give Wisconsin too much credit...

A Cuban In London said...

Thanks for the advice. I could have really done with those during the big chill back in December. And good luck to Chicago!

Greetings from London.

eden said...

My first time to hear about this warmers. This is really very helpful when you go out on a very cold weather. Our winter here is not very very cold for we don't have snow in our place but if we are planning to go to the snowy mountain (NSW)to see real snow, this is very helpful. I haven't seen real snow yet, you know:) Thank you for sharing.

Fly Girl said...

Cubano, thanks but I'm afraid they didn't win. Sigh.

Eden, never seen snow! Oh my, you must get to those mountains!

lynne Jordan said...

It's been too long since i stopped by your spot here! And it's as wonderful as ever! Too bad about da Bears!!

Fly Girl said...

Hey Lynne, Happy new year! I can't even think about the Bears...

Heather Dugan ("Footsteps") said...

I love these warmers and have gotten to depend upon them during our cold winters. I even keep a pack in my camera bag!

Jean-Luc Picard said...

A good event for those
v in Chicago! Those toe warmers made me smile

Nel said...

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Fly Girl said...

Heather, that's a good idea!

Jean-Luc, I like to make you smile!

Nel, thanks for dropping by!