Your hiking outfit needs to be about much more than style – it’s all about practicality. But thanks to unpredictable weather, you need to be prepared for every eventuality. That means you need items that keep you dry in the rain, others that cool you down when it’s hot, and options for layering up when it’s cold out. Layering clothes allows you to adapt to various weather conditions along the trail, making your trip a much more enjoyable one. Wondering how to layer clothes effectively? We’ve got a few tips and tricks up our sleeve.
HOW TO LAYER CLOTHES FOR HIKING
Your best bet for travelling comfortably is stocking up on multiple lighter layers rather than dressing in one single or bulky item – that way, you’ll find it much easier to adapt to various weather conditions by either stripping off or layering up as you go. And, if the layers are lighter, it makes it much easier to pack them away into your rucksack when they’re not needed!
But each layer needs to work together to provide a comprehensive hiking outfit that you can wear in one. So each item must complement one another to maximise comfort and efficiency along the trail. There are three basic layers you’ll need when it comes to layering clothes for hiking – your base-layer, mid-layer and outer-layer clothing. Wondering what does what? We tell all in our guide to layering clothes for hiking below – helping you learn how to layer clothes for winter hiking and cooler temperatures.
Base-layer clothing is the foundation to your hiking outfit. It’s better that it’s lightweight and able to dry quickly. As it’s worn next to the skin, moisture-wicking base-layer clothing is your best bet. You need this layer to help regulate your body temperature and draw moisture away from the skin while you’re on the trail. This will help to keep you dry and comfortable, while trapping in the warmth to shelter you from the cold.
Our long-sleeved shirts come complete with a range of our innovative technologies. The NosiLife shirts provide outstanding defence against biting insects, a technology that lasts the lifetime of the garment, making it the ideal base-layer clothing for years to come. A number of our long-sleeved shirts are also constructed using our SolarShield technology, with UPF40+ protection against harmful UV rays – because sun protection is important, even when it’s cold.
But most importantly, when it comes to layering clothes, your long-sleeved shirts must be equipped with moisture-wicking capabilities. A number of our long-sleeved shirts are built with moisture control to move body moisture away from the skin, keeping you cool and comfortable.
Much like long-sleeved shirts, long sleeved t-shirts also act as great base-layer clothing in a more casual setting. The ThermaControl fabric in the Craghoppers’ long-sleeved t-shirts provides technical base-layer clothing for your adventures. This technology allows you to stay on the move without having to stop and start to adjust your layers every five minutes.
Mid-layer clothing is your warming layer – designed to provide extra insulation on cooler adventures, trapping body heat between the layers and forcing sweat vapour to push out of your clothing away from the body. Your mid-layer can consist of multiple layers, depending on the weather conditions and temperature – but, if you pack more than one item, you ensure that you have more flexibility and the ability to adapt to a wider range of temperatures.
Fleece is the most popular type of mid-layer clothing as it is durable and quick drying. Naturally, the thicker the fleece is, the warmer it will be as the closer-knit fibres will trap in more heat. The Craghoppers’ fleece collection includes both full and half-zip options, all equipped with extra pockets and made from easy-care materials that will last long into your future adventures. The full range of Craghoppers’ fleece is also constructed using recycled materials, which makes it an eco-friendly choice for environmentally conscious travellers.
Gilets are often overlooked but, if you’re looking for mid-layer clothing, they’re the perfect choice – particularly if you’re after an additional mid-layer to throw on top of your fleece. They’re cut-off, sleeveless versions of jackets that give you freedom of movement for your arms and offer extra insulation for the body, all while locking in core heat as you walk.
Constructed using lightweight materials – like the ThermoPro synthetic fill which mimics the properties of down – our gilets are a suitable choice for your mid-layer hiking clothing collection. They’re super lightweight but just as effective at keeping you warm. But, if you’re a little too warm, you can easily store your mid-layer clothing away in your rucksack while you cool off.
No hiking outfit is complete without a proper pair of walking trousers. There are various options to choose from, like stretch-fabric trousers, zip-offs and waterproof walking trousers that provide an extra layer of defence against the weather.
Your outer-layer clothing, or the “shell” of your hiking outfit, is there for weather protection. It’s designed to block out the wind, the rain and the snow, keeping you cool and dry all the while. These are generally waterproof or water-resistant, quick-drying and durable. A lot of outer-layer clothing is also breathable, so that the moisture wicked from your body can escape.
Having the right jacket in your walking wardrobe is key for making the most out of the great outdoors. They provide an extra layer of defence between you and the elements, shielding you from windy weather and rain – not to mention locking in even more of that core warmth. You can pick up fleece-lined and insulated jackets, as well as soft-shell jackets that are more lightweight, but still just as wind-resistant and effective.
The Craghoppers’ jackets are designed with an adventurer’s pursuits in mind, made with lightweight and flexible fabrics that allow for extra ease of movement and durability.
Small enough to pack into a corner of your bag, over-trousers will provide effective protection against the elements. So, if the weather takes a turn for the worse, you can whip them out of your bag and layer them over your trousers as another level of defence and warmth.
And that’s how to layer clothes for hiking! It’s all about preparing for every eventuality. So before setting off on your next outing, take the time to think about what you’re packing and all the items you’ll need for layering clothes effectively. Complete your hiking outfit and browse our ranges of men’s and women’s outdoor clothing.