If you love climbing, working, or simply travelling in frigid environments – you must know a thing or two about winter clothing. If you sometimes wonder why you want to stay in your hotel room and watch Netflix instead of exploring the hills on your vacation, then it’s not you, it’s your clothing. Here’s how to ensure you keep warm in colder temperatures.
What to wear
Whether you’re in Ladakh or Sikkim, the principles of how to dress are the same whenever you’re in harsh, cold weather. Main things you must carry are: a stretchy, moisture-wicking base layer; a hooded soft-shell jacket that has a thin fleece lining; another thin and stretchy base layer for the bottom half topped with soft-shell pants. You can complete your look with a thicker insulated layer that’s easy to take on and off – maybe something like a synthetic fibrefill jacket. Always remember: lightweight packable layers are the way to go.
Keep your fingers and toes warm
Choose the right gloves with the right insulation, along with a jacket with hand warmer pockets to help keep your hands warm. For the feet, make sure to carry high-quality, wool socks to wear inside your insulated boots. Also remember: humans lose about 20 percent of the body warmth through the head, so wearing a nice woollen hat will also help.
Don’t forget to hydrate
It’s easier to remember to drink water when you’re sweating; but it’s as important to hydrate in the cold, as you lose moisture through breathing the dry air that usually accompanies colder temperatures. It’s easier for the body to circulate blood to the extremities when you’re hydrated, so keep drinking water. Avoid drinking a lot of alcohol or caffeine, as both of them accelerate dehydration. It’s unfair to completely steer clear them when you have the gorgeous Himalayan vistas in front of you; but remember: moderation is key.