I agree winters are hard on tripods. The one I bought last summer snapped at the hinge. Also the metal can be very cold to carry around. I’ve revived my cheap 25 dollar tripod by replaceing the broken rivits with screws and living with the broken plastic pieces. I think that if you are hear during the dark season then the other very important thing to have is a remote shutter release. When a tripod is set on snow even pushing the button will cause the pics to blur sometimes.