Here are some tips on how to choose the best outfit for hiking, along with some affordable selections of clothing that would be perfect for your next trip.
By: Ketherin Jonsson
Spring is here and that means you should get outside and enjoy the weather! Hiking is one of the best ways to get exercise, enjoy nature, and have fun.
The best way to pick an outfit for a hiking trip is to consider all of the possibilities you could encounter during your walk. Depending on where you are going, how long you are going for, and what the weather conditions are like, you will have to adjust your clothing accordingly.
As a general rule, I can say that the good old principle of dressing like an onion works perfectly for hiking.
The right compromise of lightness, safety, and comfort is ideal for the clothing you choose to wear. Although style always comes into play, you don’t want to be stuck carrying items you don’t need.
This list of hiking clothing will help you figure out what is truly useful and what is unnecessary.
Factors that will determine what hiking clothing you to choose to wear and to carry in your backpack:
- The expected duration of the hike
- Maximum altitude you plan to reach
- Current weather conditions and forecasts
A good outfit base for a hike consists of these main items:
In my opinion, the best jacket for a hike is a Marmot waterproof jacket with an inner shell made of Primaloft technology. This jacket has the advantage of being able to use both shells separately according to your needs.
there are excellent waterproof shell jackets, elasticated, which offer an excellent protection from rain and wind without restricting the movements.
The jacket will provide high breathability and a great amount of insulation from water and the wind. They are also very light and easily compressible for you to store in your backpack.
Normally, in the summer for hikes below 3000 meters, I put the jacket in the bottom of the backpack and use only the shell without the inner insulation of Primaloft.
These jackets definitely take up much less space than the old down jackets I used to wear without sacrificing warmth. My Marmot Primaloft Jacket has become an irreplaceable essential for my hiking outfit when the weather is cold.
The shirt you choose for your hiking outfit should ideally ensure good breathability and dry sweat quickly without giving a bad feeling of wetness.
I highly recommend you always carry Champion Vapor cotton tee as a spare t-shirt in the backpack that can be worn as a replacement once you reach your destination if you are all sweaty.
I also always carry a long-sleeved t-shirt in my backpack as well in case it gets breezy or cloudy and I want an extra layer.
Athletic pants and leggings are made of a lighter material that will keep you warm and dry quickly if they get wet. I would not recommend wearing jeans on a hike because, in addition to restricting movement, they will stay wet all day if you get them damp or it rains and that can be super uncomfortable.
When it is very hot, shorts are your best choice. In this case, bring a pair of long pants in your backpack, more or less light depending on the environmental context, just in case.
Boots and Socks
There are so many different kinds of hiking boots out there. Different boots exist for different needs but whatever you choose, make sure that they are durable, comfortable, and appropriate for all of the conditions you might encounter on your hike.
If the trail is going to be really wet or it is raining, consider Gore-Tex or another waterproof material to keep your feet drier.
If you know that the trail is going to be extremely rocky and uneven, pick boots that come up slightly higher on the ankle for increased support.
Of course, when it comes to footwear, the right fit is everything. The wrong boots could leave your feet aching and leave you with painful blisters at the end of your hike.
The best boots are nothing without the best socks. The best socks, like other garments, are made of wool or synthetic materials that dry fast and let your feet and toes breathe.
Look for socks with reinforcements placed in areas of increased friction.
Hat & Gloves
A baseball cap with a visor is lightweight and easy to add to your hiking backpack. It will come in handy for those super sunny days to protect yourself from the harmful rays and make it easier to see.
Gloves are only really necessary if you are anticipating hiking in the high mountains or during the off-season in cold weather.
Along with items like a water bottle, snacks, and your phone, you have to consider all of the clothing you will need to bring or wear on your hike and how it will impact the weight of your backpack.
The right compromise between lightness, comfort, and security is what I believe to be the perfect combination for a hiking outfit.
What kind of clothing is absolutely essential for you when choosing an outfit to hike in?
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