The Camino Frances

The Camino Frances

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Hiking in Winter

I've been itching to post something on walking in winter.
There is nothing like a brisk hike in sunshine, with friends, to lift your mood, and even on cloudy or snowy days, it works its magic.
I tell my walking friends - there is no bad weather, just bad equipment.

How do I dress?
I wear a layer of two of merino wool on my trunk.

Merino T1 Long-Sleeved Crew Regatta
This is the MEC version, but Costco has a cheaper line, and thrift stores lower the cost even more.

Then a down vest or merino hoodie, then a windproof and rain resistant jacket on top. I almost always have a color-coordinated silk scarf around my neck.

Legs need a merino blend pair of leggings, or fleece lined leggings if it is below -10, with a pair of nylon pants on top. The pants are rain and wind resistant, and dry fast.
Socks are merino, and shoes are my Keens which I wear all year except when I put on my Keen sandals in the heat. Keen shoes and merino socks keep my feet dry and warm, and if the snow is deep, I put on gaiters - we have not needed them this year.

I wear a buff like a headband on cool days, and a knitted tube when it is colder. I like the tube - it is like a large buff - because it serves as hat and scarf.
Thin gloves are usually enough, but below -10, I pull a pair of mittens on top.
There - prepared for the cold, and able to enjoy the hike!

You might need some icers or cleats for your shoes. They keep you safe from falls, and are available at Canadian Tire and MEC.
Here is a link to the kind that have worked for me for several years.

I also use poles. They are great year round, but invaluable going up or down on hillsides.

I watch the weather on the weather channel each morning before I go out for some clues about what to expect, but the weather is usually better than predicted.

Bring along water and a snack, and then enjoy yourself!

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