There are many schools of thought on what to wear hiking. Some folks opt for layering, others take a minimalist approach running the risk of getting caught in increment weather and then there are the folks who nail it.

Every employee at VOORMI spends their free time out of doors. We collected all their feedback to create the best guide on what to wear hiking.

Hitting the trails? Dress for comfort and adventure!

Hiking is a fantastic activity that allows you to get some exercise, enjoy the beauty of nature, and de-stress from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or just starting out, it’s important to make sure you’re dressed appropriately for the conditions. The right clothing can make all the difference between a comfortable and enjoyable hike and a miserable one.

Choose the right clothing!

One of the most important things to remember is to dress for the conditions you may experience. For example, you might start out wearing a base layer and a light jacket, but as you work up a sweat, you can peel off the jacket to stay cool. Then, as the sun starts to set and the temperature drops, you can put the jacket back on to stay warm.

Here’s a basic guide to dressing in layers for hiking:

  • Base layer: This is the first layer of clothing that goes next to your skin. In essence this manages your microclimate! It should be made from a moisture-wicking material, such as merino wool. This will help to keep you dry and comfortable. Merino Wool is also breathable, offers UV protection, is anti-microbial, anti-odor and quick drying.
  • Mid-layer: Your mid-layer is the engine that keeps you warm and comfortable during most of your hike. It provides insulation to trap heat generated by your body, but also allows for breathability to prevent overheating. Again, Merino Wool is also a perfect fabric for this.
  • Outer layer: This layer protects you from the elements, such as wind, rain, and snow. A rain jacket and rain pants are essential if you’re hiking in wet weather, but not your only option. Any product that has a water-resistant layer can handle quick weather bursts or quick moving spring showers.

Choosing the right fabrics:

In addition to layering, it’s also important to choose the right fabrics for your hiking clothes. Avoid cotton, as it absorbs sweat and will make you cold and clammy. Synthetic fabrics, such as polyester, some natural fibers (like Bamboo) and nylon can inhibit breathability and aren’t as quick drying. A fabric like Merino Wool can wick away moisture from your skin and dry quickly. This is great for all hiking settings from the coastal to high alpine environments.


Sun Protection:

When you’re hiking, it’s important to protect yourself from the sun. This means wearing a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen. A wide-brimmed hat will help to shade your face, neck, and ears. Sunglasses will protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful UV rays. And sunscreen will help to protect your skin from sunburn. Long sleeves will provide protection against the sun and are strongly encouraged where the sun is powerful – on water or above treeline.  


Your footwear is another important piece of gear for hiking. You’ll need a pair of shoes or boots that are comfortable, supportive, and provide good traction. Hiking boots are a good option for most hikes, but trail running shoes can be a good choice for shorter, easier hikes.

Here are a few things to keep in mind when choosing hiking footwear:

  • Support: Your shoes or boots should provide good ankle support, especially if you’ll be hiking on uneven terrain.
  • Traction: The soles of your shoes or boots should have good traction to help you grip the trail.
  • Comfort: Your shoes or boots should be comfortable to wear for long periods of time.

Other essential gear:

In addition to the clothing and footwear mentioned above, there are a few other essential pieces of gear that you’ll want to bring on your hike:

  • Backpack: You’ll need a backpack to carry your supplies, such as food, water, and first-aid kit.
  • Navigation: A map and compass or a GPS device will help you stay on track.
  • Food and water: Bring plenty of food and water to stay hydrated and fueled on your hike.
  • First-aid kit: A first-aid kit is essential in case of any injuries.

By following these tips, you can dress for comfort and adventure on your next hike.

Happy hiking!

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