OUTDOOR AND MOUNTAIN APPAREL | Some advises to get proper clothes on the go
Following itineraries and mountain routes, one is often struck by the variety of clothing - often unsuitable for the type of activity - that people wear, most of the times for a lack of information and specific culture of technical clothes for the outdoors. We thought of delivering a small guide that solves, at least in part, some fundamental doubts of the hiker and provides advice on what to wear, depending on the activity carried out.
We start from the upper part of the body, which must be adequately protected from cold (or hot) and from the elements, and the sun. In contact with the skin it is recommended to have a first layer, made of breathable materials that also ensure a quick drying, allowing the skin to regulate the body temperature optimally during the effort. Over it, we can choose different types of shirt, shirt or pile, depending on the type of excursion or activity that we want to practice, considering temperature and weather conditions. In the summer we can choose a short-sleeved t-shirt, always in breathable technical fabric, or a specific shirt for outdoor, which gives a more classic look and at the same time guarantees excellent performance. If it is cold or raining, we can opt for a light windproof and rainproof shell jacket, which has the double function of isolating from the outside and maintaining a proper internal microclimate. If we are caught by a sudden storm, very common in the mountains, remember to put a raincoat or an emergency poncho in your backpack. For those who want more thermal insulation, a good microfleece with Lycra inserts is the perfect solution. In the event of good weather conditions but intense cold, a technical 100 grams duvet jacket is recommended, which combines the lightness of the feather with effective thermal insulation and comfort even during activity.
We move to the lower part of the body, where the choice is restricted to two items of clothing: trousers and socks. As for the pants, we can choose whether short or long, even here considering the degree and type of effort that we will face; as regards the materials, the season and the temperature affects the weight of the fabric, while the degree of technicality requires more or less tight fit. In general, in the summer a quick-drying, monoelastic fabric pant is preferred, while in colder seasons the material becomes heavier and becomes a real softshell with windproof and rainproof properties.
To choose outdoor socks, you need to know your foot perfectly and what the stresses will be. in fact, there are many types of socks, in merino wool, cotton and synthetic fabric and mixed declinations of these materials. It will be our sensitivity to tell us which one to choose, naturally keeping in mind that the cotton is heavier and more difficult to dry than synthetic and that the wool is perfect for the four seasons but can harm a very sensitive foot.
Finally, let's take a look at the accessories. A hat to protect us from the sun, better if with a wide brim to increase the shadow zone. Trekking poles to help us with the walk, if necessary. A backpack whose capacity will vary, depending on the duration and degree of difficulty of the activity, in which to store some spare clothing, the aforementioned waterproof jacket, and all the necessary equipment.