What to Wear Hiking in Winter – Tips & Guide

Last Updated on September 13, 2020

Hiking is an aged old hobby that people have been following since they discovered outdoors. Besides keeping us fit, it also rejuvenates our minds by providing fresh air. Hence, people love hiking as it let them explore the world. Although most people like hiking, they can’t complete a successful hike.

What to Wear Hiking

Even they can’t get the best potential out of their adventure. And it may happen because either they don’t know what to wear while hiking or they wear the wrong attire.

That’s why it is essential to pick out the best hiking clothes. Here we have discussed details about what you should wear in various conditions at the time of hiking, and you may read through it to enrich your knowledge.


Footwear is the most important thing you need to wear on the terrain. These protect your feet and give your ankles support while hiking. There are several options to consider when it comes to hiking footwear.

You may wear hiking boots, hiking shoes, shoes or sandals. That means you have to wear footwear that suits the terrain and environments as well. Let’s check out which one is comfortable to wear in different hiking terrains.

Hiking Boots

Hiking boots for women or men are suitable for multi-day hiking trips because they provide support while carrying a heavy pack and can help you tackle some challenging conditions. If you are in rocky terrain at the time of winter, then you should wear thick leather boots. And if the temperatures are low, then you need to consider insulated boots.

Hiking Shoes

You may also choose to wear hiking shoes as they offer optimal comfort and control. Again, they are less bulky than boots. But one thing you need to ensure that you select the best shoes which come with the flexible midsole and feature breathable materials.

Hiking Sandals

If you are hiking in warm weather, then these sandals are can be a great choice. Also, if you are on a multi-day backpacking trip, a pair of hiking sandals can be a great alternative to heavy boots and shoes. They allow your feet to breathe. And they also enable you to pass river crossing comfortably.

Hiking Socks

Most hikers wear thick woolen socks in winter because they keep hiker’s feet warm and give fantastic cushioning. However, some hikers wear a sock liner under a woolen sock as it reduces the likelihood of blisters and provides maximum comfort. You may also follow this method.


For the lower half of your body, there are a lot of options to consider, such as pants, leggings, shorts, etc. Also, you need to think about the weather and the type of hiking you will be doing. In some conditions, you need a few pairs of pants to keep you warm and dry. And in other circumstances, you have to go with the shorts. Let’s see which situation demands what types of clothing.

Hiking Shorts or Pants

Beginners sometimes face up with difficulties while choosing what to wear. Mostly it depends on the situation. Some hikers wear shorts while others prefer wearing pants to protect their legs. Again, others enjoy the stretch of leggings. Here we will discuss the options thoroughly.

Shorts are suitable for summer hiking. You may select them if you want to go for a swim in the river while on your hike. Pants can be the best option for hiking in colder weather. Many hikers wear cargo pants because they provide plenty of rooms to store gears.

If you don’t want to wear such pants, you may choose leggings or yoga pants. These are also comfortable to wear in warm weather because they provide the ventilation as like shorts and protect your legs from the sun as well.


For the upper half of your body, there are plenty of options to choose from lightweight t-shirts, thermal layers, and shells. Here we will walk you through the suitable option that may suit you and fulfill your requirements.

Hiking Shirts

For hiking, you may choose from casual t-shirts or a long-sleeve shirt. Also, you can wear a basic shirt which can provide comfort during a day out on the trail. Like any gear option, it is a matter of personal preference. And no matter which types of shirts you wear, try to avoid cotton. You need to select a shirt that is made out of synthetic materials because they will dry quickly and stay fresh for a long time.


Lastly, you can wear some hiking accessories like hats and sunglasses. They can protect us from the sun and keep us fresh on the trail. On the contrary, in cold days you need to pack a beanie and a pair of gloves to stay warm.

Final Words

The way you dress depends mostly on the conditions of terrains and your hiking plan as well. If you plan to hike in summer, you need a lot less coverage than you need for a hike n in winter. Except for some circumstances, you should wear clothing that absorbs moisture from your skin and prevents rain. Also, you should dress in a base, insulating, and shell layer.


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