A lot of people go on hiking hiatus when winter hits, but for those that enjoy hiking too much to not go out in the winter time, there is a whole lot of gear that will keep you comfortable, even in the worst of conditions. Winter weather can, after all, be dangerous if you’re not prepared. The combination of cold and wet is a bad one, and while you should definitely enjoy yourself while winter hiking, you should also be prepared, with gear like a winter hiking jacket.
Winter Hiking JacketWhat to look for when you want a new winter hiking jacket.
- Insulation – When it comes to hiking in the winter you might want something more than just a shell. Insulated jackets are great because they keep you warm, but just be sure to take in to account your increased body heat from the actual hiking. Once you start hiking, even a cold day can be quite pleasant, and not at all cold as it first seemed.
- Waterproof – When winter hiking it’s important to have a waterproof hiking jacket. If it’s too cold for rain, and you just have to worry about snow then a merely water resistant hiking jacket will do the job well enough. Just be sure that you know the limitations of the fabric that you are buying.
Best Winter Hiking JacketSome of the better winter hiking jackets, for both men and women.
Men's Winter Hiking Jacket
- Arc'teryx Alpha SV Jacket - Gore Tex 3L Pro fabric is what you want for winter hiking. It's the kind of thing that will keep you dry through hours and hours of snow or rain, and will insulate well enough to keep you warm. The hood is helmet compatible, which makes it an ideal jacket for a wide range of other outdoor pursuits. It's also slightly longer than the average jacket, and features plenty of pockets, for keeping your hands warm and storing a few essentials. Finally, pit zips will keep you well ventilated for those warmer winter hiking days. A well made and high quality winter hiking jacket.
- Norrona Falketind Gore-Tex Pro Shell Jacket - The Falketind is another Gore Tex 3L Pro jacket, but with a lower price point. It also features a few things, like reinforced shoulders and waist areas, that will likely appeal quite a bit to backpackers, hikers and anyone else who carries a backpack. The two chest pockets are also designed to be more accessible while wearing a backpack. So definitely a good winter hiking jacket for those those wearing a backpack.
Women's Winter Hiking Jacket
- Arc'teryx Alpha SV Jacket - Arc'teryx makes a number of high quality Gore Tex jackets, and the Alpha SV is one of the better ones. It uses the very high quality Gore Tex 3L Pro fabric, which is both waterproof and breathable. It also has a number of great construction details, like a slightly long length, articulated elbows and fully waterproof zippers, which help to separate it from the competition. And pit zips, along with exposed pockets will help you to ventilate the jacket when you get too warm.
- Norrona Falketind Gore-Tex Pro Shell Jacket - If you want the high quality Gore Tex 3L Pro fabric, but don't want to pay the higher prices that Arc'teryx jackets usually command then the Falketind jacket from Norrona might be a good choice. It has the same basic construction as the Alpha SV, such as pit zips and articulated elbows, but has a few things that backpackers and hikers will appreciate. Reinforced shoulders and waist, for instance, along with chest pockets angled to be more accessible while wearing a backpack are both things that make this a winter hiking jacket ideally suited to those that wear a backpack while outdoors.