Guide for Getting Ready for New Adventures

It’s a brand-new year! And with a new year comes new resolutions, goals and opportunities for days outdoors. So, if you’ve set yourself a plan to be more active, visit new places or get involved in some fun outdoor activities, we’ve got everything the whole family needs to comfortably jump into your new year's outdoor fun and beat the winter weather in all its forms!

While walking and hiking are undoubtedly the most popular ways people like to enjoy the outdoors, this isn’t all there is on offer! There are tons of sights to see and activities to try out in every corner of the UK, from taking a stroll somewhere new to tobogganing. But if you’re new to enjoying days outdoors you might find yourself wondering what you need to get started, and with the cold January and February weather, choosing the right clothing and equipment becomes integral for a successful day outdoors. We’ve outlined the outdoor essentials you’ll need to make a snowy February day outdoors feel like springtime!

No matter what you choose to do in the colder months, a layered approach is always best! When it comes to choosing the perfect adventure outfit, it's important to keep a few things in mind to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable experience. To start, make sure you wear a moisture-wicking base layer that provides a nice foundation for insulation. On top of this, you’ll need a fleece or mid-layer for locking in the core warmth, this could be thicker and insulated, or more lightweight if you plan on faster-paced activities. We’d even recommend keeping another mid-layer in your backpack for an extra layer in case it gets chillier throughout the day. If you really want to be guarded against Jack Frost on the hillside a gilet is a perfect addition to lock in body heat. For more info on finding your perfect mid-layer check out our guide here.

The next part of your hiking ensemble is essential for winter fun, the insulated jacket. The insulation is made up of a fluffy layer of either down or synthetic insulation and functions as a super-effective insulator by trapping air in the material's clusters, which helps keep your warmth locked in. They really are a key component for keeping cosy while outdoors for prolonged periods. So, whether it’s a brisk walk or an all-day family hike, it’s insulated jackets all around!

In case that crisp New Year weather decides to take a turn, which let's face it, is likely in the UK, you’ll want to be sure you’ve got a reliable waterproof jacket to guard you from the rain. Most are easily packable and can be kept in your pack to whip out at a moment's notice. Many are super flexible and breathable and can fit nicely over your insulated jacket, meaning you don’t have to choose between being dry or being warm.

 As for legwear, there are plenty of options and combinations to make sure it’s not just your top half that stays warm and dry. A good pair of outdoor trousers should be easy to move in and ideally have a good amount of pockets for storing things like keys and snacks! In colder weather layering your legs is just as important as layering your upper body, and things like running tights, thermal underwear and all-weather socks are super useful additions to your winter adventure wardrobe.

Last but certainly not least is footwear. Probably the most important thing you’ll wear outdoors at any time of the year and in winter even more so. A good grip is key to ensure you stay safe on wet or icy ground, so deep lugs and a firm sole are the way to go. A high level of waterproofing is essential for winter as the last thing for want on a cold January day is freezing wet feet. Boots with a high ankle and a soft footbed are recommended, with a leather or Gore-Tex outer. Combine this with a nice thick hiking sock and you’re ready to confidently take to a wintery hillside!

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