To choose clothes for a walk, you need to find out about the weather beforehand. On a hot day in the height of summer, a brisk walk requires far less protection than covering a long distance on a cold winter day. First, wear clothes whose fabric absorbs perspiration and blocks outside moisture, leaving your skin dry. You will achieve this by using the basic, insulating and protective layers.
Part 1 of 4: Basic Layer
Step 1. Avoid wearing thick clothing if walking on a hot day
On cold days, it's a good idea to wear long underwear such as long underwear. However, this does not apply to hiking on a hot day.
Step 2. Wear thermal underwear in the cold
This type of garment has different weights, starting from 100 – the heavier the weight, the warmer the garment. So, if you plan to go to a very cold place and be exposed for a long time, buy pieces with a heavier weight.
Step 3. Avoid using cotton pieces
Cotton gets wet with sweat, your clothes will be uncomfortable, and you might even catch a cold if you start to perspire in colder places. This fabric is also not suitable for walking on rainy days.
Step 4. Look for fabric clothes that absorb perspiration
Merino wool and silk are good options, but the ideal is to look for clothes made of specific synthetic fabrics for that. Athletic items with the wick away feature are best for absorbing moisture.
Step 5. Choose the right socks according to the weather
They should also be synthetic or wool, to absorb moisture and prevent blisters. The thickness of the sock will depend on your preference and the weather to be faced. For days in the dead of winter, for example, it is best to choose thick wool socks. On the other hand, on a hot day it is best to wear light socks.
Some people wear a thin sock under the thick sock to avoid the dreaded blisters
Part 2 of 4: Insulating layer
Step 1. Dress up in layers
This is even more important in cold climates. As you feel yourself warming up, start taking them off so you don't get sick; if you start to feel cold, get dressed again.
Step 2. Choose shorts and light t-shirts for walking in the heat
The skin needs to breathe and excessive heat can cause many health problems; some prefer to wear a skirt or kilt for even more ventilation. To protect yourself from the sun and insect bites, wear shirts and long pants in the lightest fabric you can find.
Step 3. Look for warm clothing to protect yourself from the cold
Wearing long-sleeved blouses and long pants is basic, but you'll also need vests, jackets and tights to keep warm.
Step 4. Prefer fabrics that do not retain moisture but maintain body temperature
Fleece is the most common choice because it's lightweight and allows the skin to breathe, but there's also merino wool and goose down coats. Remember to keep the feathers dry so that they do their job properly.
There are waterproof feather coats on the market
Part 3 of 4: Protective Layer
Step 1. Purchase a jacket with a waterproof exterior and removable fleece lining for more versatility
This will allow you to stay dry in areas of light or medium rainfall, no matter the temperature. Removable fleece will keep you warm in cooler temperatures, but the jacket can also be adapted to warmer weather if needed.
Step 2. On warmer or moderate days, wear a simple windbreaker coat
These coats help keep the cold away on windy days, but are not suitable for very cold temperatures because they have no lining.
Step 3. For very adverse weather conditions, buy a waterproof and skin-breathing jacket
The best ones are designed to transmit perspiration from the inside to the outside while also preventing external moisture from entering clothing. Although necessary, these jackets are quite expensive.
Step 4. Settle for a water-resistant jacket
Heavy woolen garments block wind and rain, but tend to get wet in extreme weather conditions such as storms. However, they are cheaper than the ones that are completely waterproof.
Step 5. Don't forget to use the insulating layer for walking on very cold days
Even if you are already wearing a second skin and thermal clothing, the protective layer must also have this feature if you really want to preserve its warmth.
Step 6. Avoid coats that do not allow the skin to breathe
Though tough, long-lasting and waterproof, these jackets retain heat inside and don't allow your skin to breathe normally. This will cause you to get cold from sweating or too hot on a very cold day.
Step 7. Buy a jacket with multiple features
Look for one that has a hood, multiple pockets, and vents. Despite their usefulness, these features add to the value of the coat, but they remain the best option for anyone looking to do heavy trails.
Part 4 of 4: Other Parts and Accessories
Step 1. Wear hiking boots for more comfort
They are suitable for simple walks and more complex adventures too. These boots give your feet good support and protect them from things like sharp debris and snake bites; the height of the barrel will depend on your preference. A waterproof pair is ideal to keep your feet dry in damp or wet places, although they don't allow your feet to breathe in the heat.
Step 2. For more flexibility, choose a pair of walking shoes
These shoes provide great support for your feet, both on even terrain and on trails in the middle of the bush. Look for a pair that has a firm, grippy sole.
Step 3. Don't forget the hat
Just as it is important to wear an insulating hood to retain heat on cold days, a hat is essential for walking on sunny days. Use one that has flaps large enough to protect your face and neck from sunlight.
Step 4. Include winter gloves
The best ones are waterproof and have an internal coating. Also, you may need to use a balaclava to get warmer.
Step 5. Take a backpack or fanny pack
Backpacks are best for cold days as they have more space to include more layers of clothing and food. On the other hand, fanny packs are ideal for hot days, as you'll need to carry water and snacks in the same way, but you won't have to worry about extra layers of clothing.
- Take plenty of water on the trip. No matter how breathable your clothes are, you will sweat anyway, which means your body will lose water. Be sure to replenish this water, stay hydrated and you will avoid illness and nausea caused by the heat.
- Start slowly if you are a beginner. Walk in simpler places and cover short distances before venturing into difficult terrain and long trails.
- In addition to water, it is important to drink sports drinks to replace electrolytes lost in sweat. Pack savory snacks or sports drinks to keep yourself balanced.