Tourists dressed in jackets and winter hats, sitting on a rock with a mountain view

Winter outdoor activities – how to choose thermal clothing

Are your hands freezing? Is your head chilly? Or perhaps one warm layer just isn’t enough? Outdoor activities are a great idea all year round, but the colder it gets, the more you need to think about how to dress. Layering winter clothing is the best solution. In changing weather, you can easily adjust the number of layers to match outdoor conditions. Add something warm for your limbs and head, and you can enjoy the weather without the risk of freezing. 

trekking in the mountains - how to choose thermal clothing for cold days

Thermal underwear is essential

In the Helikon-Tex offer, you will find two types of thermal underwear, which serve as the initial layers of protection against the cold. The first is US LVL 1 Long Johns and US LVL 1 Top. They wick moisture away from the body thanks to the Quick Dry polyester fabric and also have flat seams for added comfort. This is basic insulation against light cold.

For lower temperatures, a second layer of thermal underwear is needed, like US LVL 2 Long Johns and US LVL 2 Top. These are made from a soft, quick-drying Comfort Dry material and provide additional thermal insulation. The US LVL 2 Top also features a turtleneck design and is zip-adjustable. Thermal long-johns and a comfortable top are the best start if you want to dress in layers. 

Thermal underwear
Man dressed in a brown merino beanie hat - winter accessories that protect the head

Winter headwear: hats and balaclavas

When it gets cold, protecting your head is crucial. Among Helikon-Tex winter hats, you’ll find the classic Watch Cap made from soft, quick-drying fleece polyester. Those who prefer natural materials will appreciate the Winter Merino Beanie, made 100% from a double layer of smooth-knit Merino wool.

If you like combined materials, we offer the Wanderer Cap (50% Merino wool and 50% acrylic) and the Urban Beanie (50% Merino wool and 50% recycled polyester). Balaclava users can choose between the Cold Weather Balaclava made from polyester and elastane, and a cotton Balaclava with added lycra.

Hats and Balaclavas
Man in Helikon-Tex winter gloves using a portable coffee grinder during a camping trip

Comfort in any weather: winter gloves

Frozen hands are uncomfortable and make tasks difficult. For mild cold and transitional periods, we recommend Trekker Gloves or Tracker Gloves. They warm your hands and provide a secure grip, and the Tracker model also allows for touchscreen use. Enthusiasts of traditional gloves made from genuine cow leather can choose between the Woodcrafter Gloves (perfect for forest work) and the insulated Ranger Winter Gloves.

For urban activities, we propose tactical gloves that consider good insulation and weapon handling. The Impact Duty Winter Mk2 Gloves with Thinsulate insulation and non-slip grip work best. A slightly lighter everyday model is the Urban Tactical Mk2 Gloves with a neoprene layer and wrist adjustment, which increases user comfort.

Winter gloves
Man dressed in winter clothing, walking in deep snow with gaiters

Essential for any adventure: winter socks 

Anyone who has experienced frozen feet while outdoors knows it's an easy way to catch a cold. To ensure your #JourneyToPerfection is free from such discomfort, we offer you several models of warm winter socks. For the transitional period, the Mediumweight Socks made from wool with a small percentage of elastane are the best choice. They are warm enough for autumn walks and perfectly complement a layered outfit.

When it gets really cold, we recommend the warm, thick, and durable Heavyweight Socks. For those who appreciate the qualities of Merino wool, there are Winter Merino Socks. All sock models have flat seams and an anatomical fit, reducing the risk of chafing and sock slippage during movement. The use of appropriate material blends ensures good insulation and moisture wicking.

Winter socks
Man standing on snow in gloves, using a map case during a hike, which protects the map from getting wet

Survival accessories 

If you anticipate treks in the wilderness, you'll find the Snowfall Long Gaiters made from Cordura very useful. They feature hook & loop fastenings, knee adjustments, and a hypalon strap to hook onto your boot's sole. This adds an extra thermal layer to protect your legs from the cold and wetness of snow.

To avoid getting cold while resting, we recommend using our Vagabond Seat. It’s a small, foldable Cordura mat filled with soft foam that you can clip to your belt or carry in a pocket. You can protect your map with our durable Map Case. Besides a window to shield the map from rain and dirt, the case has two external pockets for accessories.

Small items can be stored in the steel Survival Tin, where you can keep water purification tablets, etc.

Survival accessories 

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