So you’re going hiking. And it’s hot outside. The sun is beating down, humidity rising from the ground in waves, and you’re going to get burnt.
If you plan to hike in the heat, it’s important to gear up. That’s not just a matter of comfort, it’s a matter of safety. Serious dehydration and heat stroke are no joke. Make sure you have plenty of water and prepare your wardrobe for the heat.
Consider Your Fabrics
Sometimes the fabrics of your clothes matter more than anything else. You don’t want your clothing to trap heat against your body. For this reason, it’s best to look for lightweight options that allow extra airflow. Some might have mesh paneling that lets cool airflow to your body with every step.
In addition, some fabrics can wick away moisture. That way, your body stays dry and comfortable even when you’re breaking a massive sweat.
And go with the bright colors in your wardrobe! Darker tones and blacks will soak up the heat like a sponge.
Cover Your Skin
Obviously, you should be wearing sunscreen if you’re going to hike in direct sunlight. But you can also cover your skin for additional protection.
You might be tempted to go with short sleeves and even shorter shorts since that’ll let your body breathe. But it’s better for your clothes to cover your legs and arms so that you aren’t vulnerable to harmful UV radiation.
Bring a Hat
A hat can shield your face from the sun and give you a spot of cool shade wherever you go. Look for one that’s lightweight and breathable, ideally with a wide brim!
Basically, you want the opposite of a winter hat. You’re not trying to keep your body heat in, you’re trying to keep your body cool.
Protecting your eyes is just as important as protecting your skin. Eye care should always be a priority when you hike. If you’re going on a mountain trail, UV rays will increase as you get higher up the path.
Look for lenses that block the majority of visible light on sunny days. If you’re going to hike in a snowy area, get lenses with over 90 percent blockage because of the reflections.