Gear Love Baby

Luna Backpacking on Owl's Head

Having the right gear can make or break your day on the trail.  I am constantly asked for recommendations on what to wear or what gear do I need for winter hiking, backpacking, day hikes, all of the above.

Stay tuned for some of my favorite stuff.

Please Note: All of these recommendations are my own. There are TONS of pieces of gear to choose from, this is just what I have found to work for me.

  1. Navigation (map and compass)

  2. Sun protection (sunglasses and sunscreen)

  3. Insulation (extra clothing)

  4. Illumination (headlamp/flashlight)

  5. First-aid supplies

  6. Fire (waterproof matches/lighter/candles)

  7. Repair kit and tools

  8. Nutrition (extra food)

  9. Hydration (extra water)

  10. Emergency shelter

Winter Hiking

Winter Hiking on Cannon Mountain

This is everything I bring for a winter day hike. I use my 40 Liter pack as there is a bit more gear to carry.  It can take a little bit to build up this arsenal of winter gear. Watch for sales, and you can even buy used if you want. But every piece of this gear here is serving a purpose: to keep you safe out in the elements. 

Please note: You are banned from wearing cotton. Because I said. & I like you guys, I don't want you to freeze.  Instead wear materials that are breathable and techwicking.  

I bring the 10 essentials above and the following:




  • Water bottles or nalgene's. No reservoir or bladder systems as the hoses will freeze

  • Nalgene cover can help keep from freezing

Pants System:

  • Silk Baselayers

  • Leggings or hiking pants.  I wear Hot Chillys that have a "midweight warmth" to them

  • Weather proof pants (wear over baselayer and pants or bring to put on later if you get cold or need wind protection)

  • Gaiters- great to keep snow out of your boots and add more warmth

Shirts and Tops:

  • Silk Baselayer

  • Techwicking Shirt

    • Layers are your friend! I wear a T shirt, and then a long sleeve over it. On warm winter days I sometimes end up just in my tshirt. It's important not to be too hot and sweating.

  • Fleece Layer

Warm Layers:

  • Puff Jacket

  • Wind Layer

  • Extra fleece or other warm layer


  • Winter Hiking Boots

    • These boots are the shit!  They are comfy from day one. They are WARM. My feet have never been cold hiking. Waterproof, and just all around perfect for winter hiking.  I recommend sizing up to have room for comfy socks and a toe warmer if you need one.

  • Hiking socks

    • I wear these Darn Tough socks. You could go with a thicker winter sock, but my boots are SO warm, almost too warm on warmer winter days so these socks are perfect.  Plus made in Vermont and come with a lifetime warranty.

  • Bring Hot Hands foot warmers and a spare set​


  • Lightweight but warm gloves

  • Heavier mittens

    • I have these, they are wind and water proof

  • Mitten liners

    • Can be helpful but not required​

  • Bring Hot hands, plus extras

Face and Head:

​I bring 2, something very warm and something lighter

  • Fleece lined headband for your ears

    • Helps still allow your head to breathe so you dont overheat​

  • Warm Hat​

    • I wear my patriots hat. Anything works!​

  • Balaclava​

  • Ski Goggles

  • A buff or something warm to pull up over face

Other things to bring:

  • Friends

    • Or if you trek solo make sure to tell someone where are going and when you return safely​

  • Seat. The ground is snowy and wet and you don't want to sit on it

  • Summit Beer or Shot

    • The whole purpose of your hiking journey is so that you can enjoy this well deserved beverage o the summit.  In the winter I bring a shot (easier to drink than a cold beer)

  • Camera or cell phone camera​

  • Dogs- If you don't have one, borrow someone's!

  • Treats for you and your dog, or both

Winter Hike on Sugarloaf