Clothing Tips for Adventures in the Forest

Yes, I am talking about clothing on a nature blog. However, clothing choices can make all the difference on a camping trip.

Clothing is what will keep you warm on a camping trip. But there are ways to wear your clothing that can help you a lot.

One of the key things that I cannot stress enough is the rule of layers. You should wear layers, rather than one big, bulky coat, that way as you get hot while hiking or what not, you can simply take a shirt or two off. Maybe start with a cotton shirt, then a flannel shirt, then a jacket. Or, cotton shirt, sweater, jacket. Whatever suites your taste. But with a cotton shirt and a coat you take the coat off because you’re too hot, then you get too cold, put the coat back on, and the cycle continues. Or, you can wear layers, still have good insulation, and not have the weight and bulk of a coat. And I’ve noticed that I’m rarely too hot or two cold when I wear two cotton shirts and a jacket.

Also, for those tick-a-phobics (like me), wear light colored clothing. Tuck your pant legs into your socks, and tuck your shirt into your pants. If you wear gloves, tuck your sleeves into your gloves. That way, the tiny little blood-sucking demons are not only standing out as a black speck on your clothes, but they are also having to travel a whole lot longer of a way up to get to some skin. I personally don’t wear light clothing because they are easy to get dirty, but I do tuck my clothing when possible.

Next, if you plan on going in the woods during a rain (I have to say, it is a LOT of fun to do!) do not wear cotton clothing unless you plan on freezing to death. You would literally be warmer wearing no shirt at all then wearing a wet cotton shirt in the rain. At the most, wear very light, airy clothing.

Next, and this may just be personal preference, but for naturalist purposes, moccasins or tennis shoes (bare feet are best if you learn how to fox walk) are much better in the woods than boots. They are not only lighter on your feet, but you can usually have less impact on the landscape and you can be quieter. However, some of you military veterans may prefer good ol’ American boots.

Flannel is a GREAT insulator. Next time you go camping in the fall or winter, get in your sleeping bag wearing as much flannel as you can. You will be shedding layers before you know it. I’ve heard wool is also extremely good survival clothing, but I haven’t used it very much. Feel free to do some experimentation.

So there are some general clothing tips to make your stay in the woods much more pleasurable.

Keep calm and track on!