How to dress for the cold

One of the most important functions of the clothing in cold climates is to protect the body from cooling down.

The multi-layer principle is a flexible method for dressing for the outdoors – all year round. Three to four layers provide protection from the cold, wind and rain, and are easy to adjust as your body temperature changes:

The base layer

The base layer transports moisture away from the skin and keeps you dry and warm.Good base layer materials include synthetics or wool. Cotton should be avoided since it retains moisture and cools you down.The no-cotton rule also applies to underwear,socks and bras!

The middle layer

The middle layer absorbs the moisture away from the base layer while at the same time providing insulation.

If temperatures are very low or your activity is stationary,a thicker (or double) middle layer is needed. Synthetic or wool sweaters or shirts make good middle layers.

The outer layer

The outer layer is a wind and water resistant shell that keeps the cold out and the heat f rom the inner layers in. It also integrates with the other layers by releasing moisture. The outer layer should protect sensitive areas such as your head, throat, wrists, waist and ankles.

It should be possible not only to open the neck, sleeves and ventilation openings to release damp heat, but also to open zippers and make other adjustments while wearing gloves.

The reinforcement layer

The reinforcement layer are put on when resting or when it is time to set up camp – less active occasions when the body doesn’t generate much heat.

Pull-over garments should be roomy so they are easy to pull over your clothes.They should be stored in the pack where they are easily accessible so you really will put them on when you take a break.