What To Wear Hiking In The Winter?

What To Wear Hiking In The Winter

The winter months can be the most frustrating time of the year for hiking. Temperatures can seesaw, and many people are often not prepared for the coldest times of the hike. Finding the right gear is paramount for a successful winter hiking trail, which is why you need to know what to wear hiking in the winter months.

What To Wear Hiking In The Winter?

Wearing something warm is probably the first thing that comes to mind. However, it is not as simple as this, and you also need to look for something breathable and comfortable to wear for an extended period. It is essential to consider versatile clothing that will ensure comfort and give you the functionality you need.

  • Warm Clothing
  • Hiking Backpack
  • Hiking Boots
  • Snacks/Water
  • Other optional items like a helmet, camping gear, and so on

Since there are so many different options, we have created this article to help you see what you can wear for the most comfort in the winter months. Aside from knowing what to wear, it is also important that we look at the special features. You need to know which features are the most important when buying something for the winter.

What To Wear Hiking In The Winter?

The thing about hiking in the winter is that you will need to be comfortable. At the start of the hiking trail, you need something that will keep you warm. However, as you progress through the trail, you might need something more sophisticated. It should keep you warm while also allowing the wind to pass through.

Many people prefer going for a jacket and having a comfortable shirt underneath. This is probably the best option to make sure that you get what you are looking for. Once the sun sets in, you can remove the jacket keeping you warm, and you should have a comfortable t-shirt that could make life a little bit easier for you.

List Of Key Items To Buy For Winter Hiking

You must consider our list. The list will give you some essential clothing types and gear to take on your hiking trips. The guide should ensure that you are prepared for almost any situation, and you will have comfort. Here are the essential items that you have to consider when hiking in the winter:


Price: $20

Many people often forget about headwear. However, in the winter, most of the heat from our bodies escapes through our heads, which means that we get cold. Wearing a hat or some form of beanie is a great way to have comfortable headwear that keeps you warm.

Upper Body

Price: $200 – $400

The price might seem excessive for some people. However, the upper body will generally need two layers of protection in the winter months. You will need a shirt that will keep you warm on the inside, and your jacket should provide additional insulation. These jackets are often the most expensive part of the gear. However, they are functional, and they should be very easy for you to use when not hiking.

Lower Body

Price: $150

The lower body is also essential in preventing potential hyperthermia from setting in. In the winter months, you will be looking for something that will keep you warm for the most part. Should it get hot, you can remove one of the layers. However, many advanced pants can be adjusted to accommodate warmer conditions.

Are jeans the best option for hiking in the winter?


Price: $150

Footwear is just as important as all the other layers of clothing. If you hike in the winter, you might encounter ice, and you will need good footwear. In many cases, it will be even more expensive if you add crampons that enable you to walk on the snow and ice. However, good shoes are important to provide you with comfort and protection for your feet.

This guide will help you pick the best hiking boots for your winter hike.


Price: $50 – $100

The backpack is another important piece of gear, and you will often use it to store some of the layers once you have taken them off. It would be best if you had a secure backpack, durable and can hold a good capacity. There are some excellent backpacks on the market today, and you don’t need to search too far to find something functional.

Here is our guide for picking the perfect hiking backpack

Key Features Of Winter Hiking Clothing

Now that you know which items would work best for hiking in the winter, you might also want to consider these essential features. No matter which products you buy, you should cross-reference them with the following features. If they can hold up to some of these buying suggestions, they will be worth the price:


One of the main elements of good clothing is durability. It is even more important to consider that you can get sick if your clothing breaks and becomes dysfunctional. It would be best to look for reputable brands that offer you good value for your money but with a reputation of durability.


Even though the hiking gear will be used in the winter, you will still feel the heat inside the clothing. It is important to counteract this with something that offers ventilation. Many high-end jackets have zippers that can open up ventilation ports. Alternatively, you can just remove the jacket for optimal ventilation.


The inner workings of the gear should be comfortable, and this means finding something made from material that you like. If you are allergic to any materials, you don’t want them when hiking. It can be very frustrating to deal with any allergic reactions while out on a hiking trip.


Hiking in the winter is not for everyone, and many people might only do it once. It is often better if you buy multi-functional clothing that can be reused for your everyday life. However, if you are an avid hiker and only want clothing for your hiking trip, you might want to look for better gear dedicated to hiking.

Hiking In The Winter Summary

Hiking in the winter can be a new challenge, and there is so much that you can experience. Many wonderful sites like ice crystals are only available in the winter months. However, wearing the right clothing can make a big difference. Let us know in the comment section which clothing you prefer for the winter hiking trails.

Need Help Preparing for a Hike or Backpacking Trip?

Check out our Hiking Equipment Guide for Beginners.  It’s a complete list of gear that every beginner should have!

Hiking In The Winter

Lee G.

I love the outdoors! Everything from hiking, climbing, rappelling, and caving.

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