Gear list for cold hikes

I’ve come to realize over years of not investing in good gear, that investing in good gear is so worth the expense, especially gear for cold hikes. There is nothing worse than frozen fingers and toes, when you want to keep going. Here are some of my must haves that I pack when hitting the elements.

Foot Gear:

Hiking in Zion with my favorite boots.

Boots- Quite possibly the most important piece of gear you should invest in. I’ve gone through three pairs of boots in the last few years and these are my favorite. They’ve held up well for over a year now. They’re cute, light weight, water proof, and provide great traction. I will say in the -10 degrees, my toes did get a bit cold, so I would like to invest in another pair, for the bone chilling temps.

Crampons- If you’re anything like me, and tense up when walking on ice, these will be your best friend. A bit more aggressive than a YakTrack, I prefer these heavy duty crampons. They have a silicon grip that wraps around the top of your boot, easy on, easy off. A must when packing for those cold weather hikes.

Socks- My toes get cold no matter what I try. If you have recommendations PLEASE leave them in the comments below 🙂 But, these are the two pairs of socks I’ve found that keep me the warmest. Heavy duty socks. Extreme cold boot socks.


Wearing all my cold weather gear, including boots, crampons, ski pants and 3 in 1 jacket.

Ski pants- As you can see here they aren’t your typical puffy, baggy, ski pant. They are actually pretty cute, and very comfortable. Being windproof, waterproof, and fleece lined, they are the perfect pant to hike in chilly temperatures with. I usually wear them with my thermal leggings, which i’ll link below.

Jacket- For the same reason I love my ski pants, I love my jacket. It’s not overly puffy or bulky, yet it’s as warm as I need it to be. This jacket is actually a 3 in 1. The outer shell being windproof, and water resistant, the inner layer providing warmth, together a necessity on the gear list for cold hikes. As much as I have worn them together, I have worn the pieces separate. Being someone that rarely checks a bag, this jacket is a must.

Thermals- Layers, layers, layers. That’s the name of the game, when preparing for chilly hikes. I prefer a thin fleece lined thermal layer, to any sort of bulky layer. That’s why this thermal set has been my go to on so many cold weather hiking trips. I also love these high waisted thermal leggings.

Mittens- I used to be a hardcore glove girl, till I tried these ultra warm mittens. Now they aren’t your everyday mitten, they are your it’s below freezing, and my fingers may fall off mitten. I actually wore a cheap pair of gloves under, so I didn’t get frostbite when I needed to grab my phone or adjust.

Other important items:

Backpack- Along with trying many pairs of boots, i’ve done the same with hiking backpacks, and this one wins! It’s compact, yet fits everything you need, plus has a water pack. Because I don’t typically check a bag, I use this as my personal item. I can fit snacks, a book, my small purse, my water bottle, and clip my jacket in front, leaving room to spare. I love the compartments and separate pockets it has to keep everything organized. As there’s nothing worse than digging through your bag when you’re in the middle of a cold hike.

Hat- As you may have noticed in every hiking picture, I have a Carhartt hat on. Cute, comfortable, and super warm. Making a few different colors, a must on the gear list.

Snacks- Always, always, always pack snacks for any weather hike. No one likes a hangrey hiker. I also love to make sure I have a few Liquid I.V. in my bag. A hydration multiplier makes your water go that much further, and keeps you from getting dehydrated. I personally love the green tea and the lil punch of energy it gives, or the passion fruit flavor.

Now that you have a simple yet warm, gear list for cold hikes, head on over to my “Exploring Zion and Bryce Canyon National Park” blog post to get to planning your next adventure. If you need a break from the cold, and want some tropical hiking, check out “How to spend 7 nights in Puerto Rico!”

I’m always looking for recommendations for gear, if there something you think I should add to my list, comment below! I’d love to hear from you.