Athlete Students

Students brave the cold Wisconsin Winters

Cade Fisher

More stories from Cade Fisher


Photo by Marisa Valdez

When I applied to UW-Eau Claire, I knew it was in northern Wisconsin. I’m from the midwest and know what the winters could look like. However, every day I wake up and slip on my boots, I am reminded that we live in a tundra.

UW-Eau Claire students are forced to ice skate and snowshoe to class due to mother nature’s intense winter storms. This article is a rant and shoutout to all of the students and staff at UW-Eau Claire for braving the rough terrain.

The Snow

It is an experience when you put on some regular tennis shoes in the morning without looking outside. Before you know it you open the front door and you’re stepping through inches of snow, soaking your shoes and socks.

This past week, classes were canceled because of a snowstorm, and according to WEAU News that storm delivered over 10 inches of snowfall.

Students on this campus have had to trudge through heaps of snow to get to campus. Luckily, the campus does have a good grounds crew that salts and brines the sidewalks on campus to help the cause.

Sometimes, however, the weather wins and students are forced to snowshoe across campus to get to their academic buildings, the library or Davies Student Center. 

There is nothing worse than when the snow packs under hundreds of students walking on campus. The bumpy terrain can easily cause someone to roll their ankle, and the sidewalks feel like uneven sand.

The best part about this however is the added struggle of trudging through the terrain is a better workout than your everyday hot girl walk. We need to build up those calf muscles.

The Ice

Trudging through snow is one thing, but skating down the hill or from one class to another is another challenge.

The ice that can form on the sidewalks of UW-Eau Claire and the greater city requires a large deal of concentration and balance for students. 

When you’re tackling different thicknesses of ice without proper footwear, a keen eye is required to make sure you can get to classes without pulling a Charlie Brown.

Hobbs Ice Arena is an ice rink that students can use if they don’t get enough of that skating kick on their way to class. Winter sports thrive inside and outside here in Eau Claire.

The Wind

Walking alone is a great exercise for students to participate in to get outside and get the body moving. The hill alone is a workout for students, but the winter winds turn the difficulty up tenfold. 

It is a rough battle walking on campus with the wind pushing you back. More force is needed to get students around campus, building up a sweat by the time students get to their classes. 

The winter wind is another type of gale too. The hats and scarves handed out are great ways to combat the cold, but full ski masks are required to face the chilling winds that give bare skin freezer burns at times.

I would like to take a moment to also give respect to all of the students who have to cross the footbridge to get to Haas Fine Arts Center and the Human Sciences and Services building. The wind from the river is a final boss that you all bravely face.

Living in a winter wonderland like UW-Eau Claire can be a challenge, but it offers new ways of exercising that students don’t have to think about. No matter the weather, it can be an added bonus that going to class is its own gym workout.

Congratulations to all UW-Eau Claire students for attending school in the north. You have faced some truly rough winter months and your struggles are seen.

Fisher can be reached at [email protected].