Whether you're looking to keep the sun off or the rain off, a hiking hat is an important piece of gear to have when you are hiking. There are some great hiking hats that will keep you well protected from the sun, as well as a few that will keep you dry as well. And there are even some hiking hats that will help keep the bugs away from you while you are out enjoying the wilderness.
Hiking HatAll the best features to look for from a hiking hat.
- Sun Protection - Any good hiking hat should provide you with protection from the sun. There are a few ways that they can do this, such as a big wide brim or with fabric that hangs down to your neck, but some sort of sun protection is important. Related to this, look for hats with a good UPF rating.
- Strap - Any hiking hat with a wide brim will fly away at the first gust of wind if it isn't securely fastened to your head. A good fit will help, but a strap that can be cinched up to your chin is even better. You can also use that strap to let the hat hang out on your back when you don't want to wear it.
Best Hiking HatThe very best hiking hats.
- Tilley LTM6 Airflo Hat - Tilley is a well known name in outdoor hats of all kind, so it's no surprise that they have a few great hiking hats, the Airflo being one of the better ones. It's made with nylon, and has the standard wide brim to keep the sun off your face and neck. It also has a UPF 50+ rating to help keep the sun off. Unique features include mesh around the top of the crown to increase ventilation, a hidden pocket for storing a few small valuables, and a bit of foam built in to make sure it floats.
- ExOfficio Bugsaway Adventure Hat - The Bugsaway is another wide brimmed hiking hat. It's nylon, so it will dry quickly if you get it wet, and also has a UPF 30+ rating to help protect you when the sun is out. The stand out feature of the Bugsaway, however, is that it actually helps keep bugs away. It's treated with something called Insect Shield, an odorless material that repels bugs and biting insects.
- Outdoor Research Seattle Sombrero - The Seattle Sombrero is another wide brimmed hat that will protect you from the sun, but is better suited to protecting you from the rain. It's fully covered with Gore-Tex, so water will drip off of you, but not on you. And because it's Gore-Tex, you will get a small amount of breathability for when you start sweating.