Dressing for the Hiking Trail

Mens sweatshirts

When out in the wilderness, you can’t just access your closet or dresser to change your clothing when the weather gets tough — which is why you can’t take your outdoor clothing decisions lightly. Camping gear is essential, and the proper clothing is just as important as your tent and stove.

according to a recent survey, the most popular outdoor activities in 2012 were camping, biking, fishing, and hiking, all of which require adequate apparel to survive nature’s harshest elements. This article will address what outdoor clothing you will need for your future endeavor, emphasizing the importance of layers:

Outerwear: It is not enough to just bring one camping shirt for a three day excursion through the Canadian wilderness; you’re going to need an outer protective shell — it is your first line of defense. Purchase water-resistant or waterproof jackets that will repel rain and snow, yet will also be breathe-able. If you try on a rain jacket and you start to sweat, this is a good indication that the material is not well ventilated enough for you. Surf clothing will generally be water resistant. Look for armpit zippers, mesh pockets, and waist drawcords.

Insulation: All outdoor clothing stores will sell proper insulation layers, such as wool sweaters, to keep you warm in the coldest conditions. Your choices here are anywhere from synthetic fiber materials (such as fleece) to the traditional wool. There are also other state-of-the-art materials out there such as Polar-guard and Primaloft. Fleece is your best bet for staying warm: it is easy to pack, generally lightweight, and breathable. Of course, always consider function over form; save the appearance of the apparel for last.

Underwear: The Canadian retail clothing industry generates over $260 million in annual revenue, and most of this is from the purchasing of underwear. This isn’t Victoria’s Secret underwear, this is high-performance fabric that will wick moisture away in order to keep you dry and comfortable. Spandex, or anything else made of polyester, is a great material. Anything that is form-fitting, lightweight, and stretchable is the best pick for hiking.

Accessories: This doesn’t mean purses, ladies. The Canadian women’s clothing industry generates $5 billion in revenue every year, and a large portion of this is from outdoor clothing and accessories. Accessory pieces that have multiple functions and are still lightweight, such as bandanas, are a great addition to your list of items to bring. A hat can also be your best friend in rain or shine.

At most, you should be looking for outdoor clothing that is lightweight and easily compacted into small spaces. Be sure to check the weather of your destination and plan accordingly.

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