With each winter trekking I learn more about the equipment I need, and I try to slowly adapt my sport wardrobe to the real needs. However, it was not an easy task and I had to seek more professional opinion of my friends, ask a boyfriend and check out what the enthusiasts on the Internet forums say about this matter. Such a wide range of choices that shops offer us can make you dizzy.
How to dress up for mountain hiking in winter?
It all depends on the thermal insulation capabilities of our clothes. Thanks to the appropriate technology, our clothes will protect us from the wind, rain, keep the warmth inside and drain the steam outside. Thanks to that we will reach the summit and we will return unscathed. I used the thermo clothes earlier while snowboarding and running. For example, if we replace it with layers of cotton, which does not have thermal insulation capabilities, the material will soak, the weight of the clothes will increase and we will get cold.
A set of clothes for winter trekking consists of layers:
1. First layer: thermal isolating underwear. A ski or snowboarding set is welcomed. My first layer usually consists of a sports bra, a light T-shirt (sleeveless or with short sleeves) and thermal isolating leggings (I use these for running). My favorite choice when it comes to socks are those of Alpaca wool because they keep the warmth well.
2. Softshell layer: a layer that will protect us against the wind, sometimes also from a gentle rain. When hiking in the mountains in the winter, it happens that the sun reflecting from the snow makes it very hot. Then it is the most comfortable to wear a softshell: softshell pants put on leggings and a light softshell jacket (or a softshell / fleece blouse).
3. Hardshell layer: that is, both wind and waterproof layer for heavier conditions. Here, everything depends on our needs and the temperatures at which we find ourselves. In most cases, this layer keeps the heat while we’re moving, so if you plan a longer stop, it’s better to have a down-to-go with you. The hardshell layer is a jacket that we put on top of softshell / sweatshirt / fleece.
Shoes: I use shoes in my size (39). According to the recommendations for longer trips and longer trekking, it’s better to think about larger size shoes, because the feet may swell and cause discomfort. In addition, with long descents, the toes automatically slide forward – the larger size of the shoe can be more convenient.I use shoes that cover the ankle, but they are quite soft and do not have a waterproof function. They are suitable for one-day trips and I had no objections to them, but I plan to buy more appropriate footwear.
Accessories: gloves, cap / headband.
How much does a set of clothes for the mountains cost?
My winter set consists of:
The whole set: around 500eur Is this a lot? Yes and no. It all depends on how we look at it. On the one hand, the amount is definitely not the lowest, but on the other hand the prices of mountain sports clothes do not seem to have an upper limit. We can find jackets for both 150 and 1000 eur. I think that it is possible to complete a decent outfit for winter trekking in the mountains at a reasonable price while maintaining a very good quality. In addition, once purchased clothes have multiple purposes (winter sports, hiking, cycling, etc.), and hopefully will serve us long.
How do I know which mountains clothes will be suitable for me?
After long time of searching and debating, I learned some of the most important things:– Clothes must be well-fitted to us to avoid discomfort. The first layer (underwear or thermo leggings) must lie on us like a glove and adhere well to the skin– It is good to invest in light clothes, which will not constitute an additional burden during a longer route. My jacket weighs only 360g!– Water resistance is divided into several types and it is important to read correctly whether our clothes are “water-resistant” (resistance to light rain, hand wash), “water-repellent” (hydrophobic) or “waterproof” (highest level of resistance) for water).– It is important to check the material membrane. The real water resistance starts from 10000mm H20 (in my jacket it’s 20000mm)– We also check the breathability of materials (permeability). This means that our jacket will isolate us from the atmospheric conditions, and at the same time will evaporate the moisture of our sweat. It should not be lower than 10.000g H2O / m3 (15000mm in the case of my jacket)– We avoid cotton and clothes that look good but do not have any parameters– Many people recommend the layer adhering to the body to be made of merino wool (Merino) clothing. But until now I’ve only used wool producs as my socks made of both: merino, alpaca.– Gore-Tex is not the only right choice. Many companies have introduced their own unique membrane solutions, such as Dry-Technology from Mammut
Trekking in the mountains – what we must take with us?
Additional necessities: poles can ease the movement in the field (currently I am thinking of buying), capacious and comfortable backpack (preferably if it also has a rain cover).I always take with me an extra pair of thin gloves that I can put on during any crisis situation if they are completely soaked. I also had an extra sweatshirt, but it did not come in handy.
Stores with trekking and mountain clothes – which one have good reviews?
Those from which I personally used:
– One way
– Kalenji (it’s more about shirts here)
– Nike (leggings, shirts)
Other companies that have very good opinions among mountain enthusiasts:
– The North Face
– Jack Wolfskin
Sports bras: I praise Hunkemöller very much (mine is from the D. Kroes collection)
What your set consists of? What are your must haves? And what would you rather avoid?