View Full Version : need clothing advice

10-12-2009, 11:46
I'm going to do a short section in NC this weekend, and would like some clothing advice. The forecast is for highs around 55 and lows around 35, with a 30% chance of rain. I've only hiked in warmer weather, and want to make sure I have the right type of clothing - enough to keep me warm, but not a bunch of stuff I won't need. (I know some of you are probably thinking that 55/35 is mild, but I'm from S. Carolina and like it hot).
1. What would you wear to hike in this kind of weather?
2. What would you carry to wear in camp at night? My sleeping bag is a 35* NF, which I know is cutting it close, but I'm not buying a new bag this week. I will also be sleeping on an insulated BA pad (in a tent).

10-12-2009, 12:02
1) Shorts and a wicking t-shirt. If it gets a bit cooler, then add a wicking long-sleeve. If a lot cooler, some wool or PolyPro long john bottoms under the shorts and maybe a wind layer of some type (rain gear may work). Wearing your actual insulating layer while hiking will be overkill except in extreme situations.

2) The same long john layer with a long-sleeve wicking shirt. Long pants - convertible work great. I carry a light weight PrimaLoft insulation layer that has a nice hood. Something like a MicroPuff or Thermawrap, but is an REI brand. Think they called it a Gossamer Jacket, but they no longer make it. Too bad, is an excellent insulation layer for this shoulder season. A mid-weight fleece would be an acceptable alternative, but is heavier and bulkier. Also carry some type of knit hat, I prefer lightweight wool or acrylic over fleece, and some light weight wool or acrylic gloves (extra socks can work, but not as convenient). For a few extra ounces, a pair of silk longjohns make great sleeping gear to help keep your bag clean, and assure a nice, dry camp/sleep layer if you end up wearing your other longjohns while hiking.

This set-up will get you comfortably down into the low30's and mid to upper 20's while in camp. Add layers as needed, remove to avoid sweating when not needed. Expect to be a bit chilled when first getting up in the AM and just before bag time in the evening. That's normal for me. Any time you get too cold so that this combo doesn't work, you make camp and get into your bag.

Make sure you have adequate rain gear, top and preferably bottom. These double as your wind layer.

10-12-2009, 12:39
1. Nylon hiking shorts over synthetic boxer-briefs. A light short sleeve wool t-shirt. An ultralight nylon wind shirt. Wool hiking socks, trail runners. A nylon ball cap.

I would carry light gloves and a microfleece hat for hiking in the chilly early morning.

2. Light wool long johns and a long sleeve base layer top (also wool.) Synthetics will work just as well. A long sleeve microfleece zip tee (*only b/c you are from SC -- this will be useful in camp and possibly while hiking.) An insulated jacket, like a midweight fleece or down jacket. A warmer hat and gloves (or mittens.) Rain shell and rain pants. Dry wool socks for sleeping.

I put my long john bottoms on, then put my shorts back over them, then add my rain pants if it gets windy or cold. This is good down to freezing or so just sitting around camp. Same with the top -- put on a dry base layer, then my wind shirt, then down sweater, then my rain shell if it's really cold (below freezing.) Use the microfleece zip tee as a base layer if it's colder than 40 or so.

If it were me, I would definitely wear my clothing inside that bag at night.

Have fun.