Recently in Ohio we have received a little snow. With snow always comes the excitement of sledding, snowball fights, and the most magical gift of all – snow days. To help get everyone ready for these activities. I decided to kick things off with a look at a couple of different ways to build a snow fort, and also how to utilize these various forts for a full fledged outpost.
The first fort we are going to look at is The Snowpile. These can be found anywhere that someone has piled up snow, and they are the easiest and most convenient defense. Though this may not be the most luxurious of forts, it will allow for protection in a sudden attack of snowballs.
Simply stated, a snow pile is a pile of snow. With further investigation, snow piles can be found easily, and if some else did the piling, with no effort. Otherwise, you will need to pile the snow yourself in any manner that you see fit.
Next, let’s take a look at the simple rampart fort. This fort is a simple design and easy to build. You will start by finding an area of ground that is strategic – located on high ground, good visibility, and
with a few options for retreat. You will then use the existing snow, or, if needed bring in more snow and start to pile the snow in a semi circle (see figure 1). You will want to pile the snow as high as is comfortable for defense, a good suggestion would be at least 3 feet high.
The Rampart Fort will allow for a better defense against invaders and leave a clear route for retreat and re-grouping at an alternate location. This fort obviously does not offer any protection from rear attacks, so you will want to be vigilant while using this fort.
The Circle Fort
The circle fort is very much like the rampart fort. However, instead of stopping at a semi-circle, you will create a full circle of snow with a height of about 3 feet. It is heavily suggested to create a small door or two in this structure for ease of egress and entrance. When quick movement is necessary, you will thank yourself for adding the doors.
The Circle Fort allows for 360 degree protection from the assault of line drive snowballs. If the attack on your fort changes to a lob throw, where they are trying to hit you over top of the wall, then it would be wise to fashion a roof. The best suggestion for a roof would be to find an old tarp and some poles. The tarp should be large enough to allow the entire fort to sit beneath it. Then take the poles and hoist the tarp to about 5 feet high. This will allow a two foot window for snowballs to enter and exit, allowing for a more than adequate defense.
Creating a Complete Defense
Often when winter brings snow early, it is easy and fun to start to develop an ultimate snow defense system. I would urge you to develop your own personal system, but I have also included a system that works with my layout below.
Feel free to offer any suggestions and comments below.