View Full Version : clothing advice--help appreciated!

01-20-2006, 21:03
I hope that this thread will be helpful to others who are as mystified by the vast world of clothing options as I am. Thanks in advance for any advice.

Here is a list of the clothing I have. I know I have it all, I just don't know what do bring and when. What layering combinations do people recommend? For example: In winter should I hike in shorts and capilene bottoms, or should I save the bottoms for sleeping in? I'd like to go as light as possible while still being prepared for medium comfort in a variety of conditions. My start date is march 6 or 7.

down coat, pretty light
rain coat

heavy fleece w/ hood
light fleece (200 I think)
mid layer w/ half zip
capilene silkweight long sleeve
synthetic t-shirt
cotton t-shirt (yes, yes, it will kill me. but for summer?)

zip off pants, quick drying
bathing suit/nylon shorts
rain pants

med. weight capilene bottoms
very light silk long johns

fleece hat
3 pair of smart wool-ish hiking socks

01-20-2006, 21:44
WOW....Thats a pile of clothes!!!

After the "break in period" (about 3 days) on my thru hike I carried:

Top, outer:

Rain jacket
nylon long sleeve button down shirt (wind protection and fine dining)
fleece jacket (now a poofy poly fill jacket)

Top inner:

2 tee shirts

Bottom outer:

rain pants
long pants (wind protection and fine dining)

Bottom inner:

spare undershorts (shorts had linners)


2 pair socks
rain hat
lite fleece hat (sleeping mostly)
gaitors (not sure that I would carry agion)
several handkerchiefs

No long johns, only one jacket, no gloves (I needed them once, I used my spare socks)

When cold I would put on the hat first, My favorite pieces turned out to be the long sleeve shirt and pants. They were the most used. They worked for cooler weather, light rain, bug protection, and nice resturants.

01-20-2006, 22:33
At Mountain Crossings ( about 30 miles from Springer) they have a list for thru-hikers when they shake down their packs.....

Here is their basic suggested THer clothing list:

1 midweight top
1 midweight bottom
1 lightweight top
1 lightweight bottom
1 capilene T-shirt
1 nylon shorts or zip off pants
1 rainjacket
1 rainpants
1 mid layer - (fleece or jacket)

again, this is just the clothing, and doesn't include hats, gloves, bag, etc.

01-21-2006, 18:49
five bottom layers with no back ups ,one each;
silk weight undies, nylon shorts ,light weight long undies,light tights or light pile pants not wind resistant,rain pants.
five layers on top with one silk weight back up tee shirt;
silk weight tee shirt,light weight long undi top,heavy weight capaline zip top, mid weight pile vest,rain coat.
four pairs of ragg wool sox not washed in soap ever and worn two pair at a time,two synchilla balanclavas,one neck gaiter,one pair fingerless gloves and one pair light shell mitts for rain.

01-21-2006, 18:58

1. 2 synthetic t's during warm months - 1 to sleep other to hike
2. 1 synthetic t and 1 long sleeve long john - in cold weather
3. Rain jacket
4. Poofy down or polargard filled jacket


1. 2 undies - 1 to hike and 1 to sleep
2. two shorts in summer
3. 1 short and one long john pant in winter
4. two socks


1. Gloves
2. Skully

That worked for my wife and I on ours. Hope the advice helps!

01-21-2006, 20:28
and make sure you have a DRY outfit to put on when your hiking days is
done. It's a real bummer crawling in your bag with wet clothes on.

In my bag for Feb 12th departure will be:
2 extra pr's. socks,
One pr. sock liners (for cold hiking only and serves as my gloves).
2 pr. cool max undies.
One Smartwool bottom (lightweight).
Either a coolmax t-shirt or a Smartwool T shirt, depending on temp.
Montaine wind pants and top.
Rain jacket.
Balaclava ( mid-weight )
Sweat band for those cool windy days where the Balaclava is to much or it warm and my head is sweating.
Pr. Rain mitts. Only cause I am old and my hands will not move well in the
cold rain, but they are very light-weight and have come in handy to much
for me not to carry.
I also wear a super lite weight hat to keep my shiny head from blinding
other hikers and wildlife. :sun

01-21-2006, 20:56
I have switched to Icebreaker wool layers...all of them if I can afford. They are Merino wool, natural fiber, don't stink after long wearing, wear like iron, easy to wash and quick to dry in air and manage heat/cold very well...expensive but worth it. Tshirt, cami, mid weight and heavy weight layer...sometimes I carry a silk weight Mtn hardwear Zip t and a Patagonia T shirt short sleeved. Mtn hardwear Mid bottoms mostly to sleep in. I hate capilene. My current configuration for hiking at about 20 to 40 is...

Icebreaker cami (ultra fine)
MH silk zip t long sleeved
or Ibkr Tshirt short sleeved
360 Ibkr Zip (it comes on and off)
zip off MH pants
mid weight baselayer pants if below 35 or windy
sometimes I carry a Golite wind jacket (wisp I think with hood) because it is so lite and small and adds warm use instead of a 100 weight fleece.

I carry Packa for raincoat, rainpants, wool balaclava, windproof MH lite hat, running gloves, Cedar Tree's sil overmitts and carry a puffy Ground Jacket if its going to be really cold and probably if I am section Hiking. Standard sweating headgear is buff...can do lots of stuff...the peace buff currently.

Must add I have been doing this and experimenting for a long time I add and subtract stuff as i can afford and acquire (I used to work at a gear store)...you need to figure out how your body works in cold weather and then carry what works for you...you'll figure it out by the time you get to Neels Gap. Your fear will make you carry a lot, necessity will let you get rid of it...it happens to all of us so listen to your own body ....and use your brain. So get out and try different combos in the next couple of weeks in the cold if you can..this will give you better idea what works. I do carry gaiters as when its 38 and up you can take off your zip off bottoms wear gaiters and hike in shorts..its cool. Also they do protect you from nettles in the summer (REALLY HOT) and give you extra warmth in winter if its reallllllly cold. I hate hiking in rain pants...

good luck and hike on,
missing kink/v

01-21-2006, 20:57
Oh I forgot, as a hiking female...bag the undies...:)
useless weight...

01-26-2006, 21:47
exsplaine hating capaline. i hate it and i love wool and i wear wool all summer too . but i use capalene to save the weight and to get slightly better use out of it when wet.i was allways taught wool is better and if my life depended on my cloths id choose wool but my life is safe enough when in capaleen on the at.no its not as comfy,yes it smells like male cat spray when dirty, but my need is a light load .what causes it to stench so bad? its like a ...,a bo multiplyer. i never ever stink except in capaleen.why?????????????????????????????????????? ?????????????????????????????????????????????????? ????????????????????????????????????????thats what i call hate.