Sunski’s Guide: What to Wear Hiking
Hiking is perhaps the most accessible way to get up in it. After all – all you really need to go for a walk in the woods is two feet and a good attitude. That being said, you may still be asking yourself what to wear hiking. After all, the appropriate sports sunglasses and gear can make a world’s difference between getting out for an hour and getting out for a day. We’ve compiled a list that will take you from the base to the summit (wherever your summit may be) with style and ease.
Pack them even if it’s not sunny. Shades can be a great accessory for wind, rain, or when the clouds unexpectedly clear. This is especially true in the high alpine, when you’re a few thousand feet closer to the sun and its rays. Polarized glasses can be a life saver on extra sunny days.
2. Speaking of the sun- Sunscreen
Like a pair of good sunnies, sunscreen should always be in your pack regardless of weather when you start. Even if the sun stays hidden for the majority of your outing, it can come in handy for chapped lips, rough hands, and will soothe windburn too.
3. Ski Strap
Made popular by backcountry ski enthusiasts, ski straps can come in handy even for those just looking to get out in fair weather. If a strap breaks on your pack – use a ski strap. Soles on your boots falling apart? Use a ski strap. Want a fun necklace? Ski strap! The options for use with these handy straps are limitless, and they can be an extremely useful temporary solution for those encountering small misfortunes in the backcountry.
We know moms around the world have always advised to pack a sweater because it might be cold, but when you’re choosing what to wear hiking – especially in the alpine backcountry – we mean it. You might feel hot while ascending up your hike, but the second you sit down for a break, your sweat could start to get a little cold, and BOOM, it’s freezing. Add in some wind and you might be in for a real doozy. Synthetic, breathable layers work best for day hikes, seeing as they’ll dry faster than cotton, hold in body heat, and serve as a windproof base.
5. Good, quality socks
When deciding what to wear hiking, these can make a world’s difference in the comfort of your feet, especially when out for an all-day excursion. Something thicker that extends at least above your ankle works best for longer outings and lessens the likelihood of blisters and discomfort as you explore.
6. Speaking of blisters…
Whether you prefer moleskin or duct tape, something to cover raw skin is necessary. Blisters are a surefire way to ruin a hike, but easy solutions like Neosporin + Moleskin will make it possible to continue on when your mind says yes but your feet say hell no.
7. Cell phone
While so many of us are inclined to leave technology by the wayside as we venture into the woods, it’s important that at least you or one member of your group has a device to contact the outside world in case of emergency. Additionally, mapping apps like Gaia make it easy for hikers to track their route without having to deal with pages of extensive maps.
While this is by no means a comprehensive list of what to wear hiking, we hope it aids those looking for an adventure near or far – wherever your mountain top may be!