Tips on Choosing Hiking Gear

Tips on Choosing Hiking Gear

Late winter and early spring hiking is a magical experience, thanks to less people, plenty snow often covering the ground, and a cool nip in the air. Being prepared for the cold and wet is crucial to how much you enjoy the hike-if you're cold the whole time, you won't appreciate the beauty of the environment coming alive as we move into spring quite as much. Gear up for any hike that might include variable weather with these tips from retail pros.


Stick With the Tried-and-True Fabrics

"There are a lot of newer 'high tech' materials and fabrics that are recommended for wet, wintery, or spring-like conditions, but we find that often it's the tried and tested fabrics that work best. Tweed has been used for hundreds of years to keep people warm during the winter months and is still a popular choice with people who work in cold conditions." – Max Robinson, A Hume Country Clothing


Check the Outsole of Your Boots

"Boots come with rubber outsoles, and for good reason: Rubber is naturally waterproof and slip-resistant. When shopping for boots, always refer to the thickness of the outsole. Many boots come with spikes or lugs for walking over technical terrain." – Experts at Dick’s Sporting Goods


Have Layers For All Weather Conditions

"Always dress in layers when hiking in the winter or early spring, and choose a baselayer that has insulating and moisture-wicking properties to help regulate body temperature. Though both merino wool and polyester baselayers will wick away moisture from your skin and keep you dry, once merino wets out, it takes a long time to dry. If rain is in the forecast, hikers may want to opt for synthetic fill midlayers." – Ethan Garceau, Outdoor Gear Exchange


Invest in a Ballistic Nylon Backpack

"A fabric that fits the bill is a ballistic nylon. Fun fact: bulletproof vests in World War I were constructed of ballistic nylon." - Karran Gupta, LiveWell360


Choose Boots Protected With DWR (Or DIY)

"Test to see if your new boots have a DWR (durable water repellent) finish on the upper. If your boots have this finish, water will bead up and roll off the surface of the upper. Even boots with a waterproof breathable membrane should also have a DWR finish to prevent moisture from saturating the exterior fabric or leather." – Experts at Sierra Trading Post


Be Able to Connect Jacket and Pants

"A jacket-to-pant connect system keeps out snow and cold, especially on those heavy, random powder days we get in the spring across the country. As well as sealing out wetness, a connect system will prevent the snowskirt on your jacket from riding up." – Experts at EMS


Source: 6 Retailer Tips for Choosing Hiking Gear for the Late Winter and Early Spring

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