Hiking Attire Summer Tricks and Tips


Let’s talk about decking yourself out for those summer trails. Think of trail runners, they’re your feet’s best pals, offering the cushion and grip for every rocky, rooty step. Brands like Altra and Salomon have some solid options that won’t let you down. Ever heard of an outdoor research sun hat? That’s your noggin’s shield against the blazing sun. Keep those rays at bay!

And don’t even get me started on socks. Darn Tough makes some that could probably survive an apocalypse. For the rest of your ensemble, REI’s Sahara sun shirts are like wearing a bit of shade, and Prana’s got your back for both pants and shorts. Comfort and functionality, all in one. Finally, throw in a Gregory daypack for your supplies, and boom, you’re ready to hit those trails like a pro.

Now, I know what you might be thinking. “All this gear sounds pricey!” But remember, investing in good quality hiking attire not only keeps you comfy but also safe. Plus, this stuff lasts. You won’t be scrambling for replacements any time soon, which is more than I can say for that ratty t-shirt from three summers ago.

So, to cap it all off (pun intended), grabbing the right gear is like casting spells for a successful hike: it keeps the discomfort at bay, lets you enjoy the sights and sounds, and hey, you might even look good in the process. Remember, it’s not just about looking cool; it’s about staying cool, comfortable, and protected under the summer sun.

Planning Tips for Hot-Weather Hiking

Before you even think about lacing up those trail runners, remember: that timing and location are everything when you’re planning to hike in hot weather. It’s like deciding to walk over hot coals; you gotta know what you’re getting into. Believe it or not, it takes your body about 10 days to two weeks to get used to the scorch of high heat. So, take it easy on your first few adventures. No need to play hero and conquer the tallest peak in the blistering sun.

The early bird gets the worm, or in this case, the coolest part of the day. Hitting the trails at the crack of dawn can be a game-changer. You’ll avoid the peak sun hours, making your hike less of a fry-fest and more of a pleasant stroll. Plus, the world looks pretty different in the gentle morning light. It’s like nature’s Instagram filter.

Finally, know when to call it. If the heat is cranking up to eleven, maybe swap that midday hike for something cooler, like a nice shaded path or even a dip in the local swimming hole—no shame in the game of staying safe. Listen to the weather forecast, your body, and sometimes, even your grandmother’s advice: “Keep cool when the world’s hot”. She’s not wrong.

Good Layers for Summer Hiking

Layering isn’t just for those chilly fall hikes; it’s also a secret weapon for battling summer heat. Start with moisture-wicking fabrics that draw the sweat away from your body, keeping you dry and comfortable. Score one for Team Human against the summer sun. These base layers are lighter than a feather and more refreshing than a cold lemonade.

When the mercury rises, having an outer layer with UPF 50, some breathable hiking clothing, and a lightweight fleece for those surprisingly brisk summer mornings can make all the difference. You’ll go from sweating buckets to cool and comfortable with just a zip and a tuck. Even adding nylon blend clothes and gear to the mix can enhance your comfort, creating an ensemble that’s as ready for a sudden cold snap as it is for the midday heat. And don’t forget, when you’re hiking in the summer heat, an unexpected rain shower can drench your spirits as well as your gear, so packing those rain jackets or opting for quick-drying fabrics can keep you marching to the rhythm of your drum, dry and snug.

Cool neck

Now, this might sound a bit old school but never underestimate the power of a cool neck. It’s like having your portable AC. Some folks are jazzed about cooling neck gaiters, but here’s a trick from the depths of simplicity: a cotton bandanna. Dunk it in a stream, wring it out, then drape it around your neck or over your head. Voila! Instant relief from the scorching sun.

It may not be the most high-tech solution out there, but it’s a classic for a reason. Feeling adventurous? Get that bandanna soaking wet and wear it like a badge of honor. It’s a shock to the system at first, sure, but it’ll drop your body temperature faster than you can say “refreshing”. Sometimes, the best solutions don’t come from fancy gadgets but from the simplest acts.

Use right socks

You might not think much about your socks when you’re gearing up for an outdoor adventure, but let me tell you, the right pair can be the difference between a blissful journey and a blister-bound nightmare. Cotton’s out; wool or synthetic fabrics are in. They’re the unsung heroes, providing that cushiony cloud for your feet and fighting off those pesky odors to boot.

Now, there’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to the perfect hiking sock but aim for something that’s going to give you padding without smothering your toes in sweat. Icebreaker’s Merino wool socks? They’re like the luxury sedan of footgear – smooth, efficient, and they’ll take you places comfortably. Trust me, your feet will thank you, and a happy hiker is one with happy feet.

Always wear wt cotton in hiking

Hot weather hiking calls for gear that’s as ready for the sun as you are. But here’s where I throw you a curveball: ditch the cotton when you’re picking out your hiking attire. That’s right. While that cotton tee might feel light and airy, it’s not doing you any favors when you start to sweat. Instead, go for hiking shirts, with a UPF rating high, and made of breathable materials. These bad boys will wick away moisture, keeping you cool and dry, with no sweat—literally.

And don’t even get me started on the variety of summer hiking clothes out there. From sports bras that feel like a second skin to hiking essentials that boast UPF ratings to guard against the sun’s villainous rays, the right gear can make or break your experience. Light colors reflect the sunshine, making you a moving patch of cool. Opt for lightweight, moisture-wicking fabrics, and remember, wearing cotton in the peak of summer is like wearing a wet blanket. Choose wisely, my friends.

always keep and bring a squirt bottle

You might think I’m kidding, but a squirt bottle? It’s your secret weapon against the relentless summer heat. A quick spritz on the face or the back of your neck can be a game-changer. And if you’re really in the mood for a drastic cooldown, dousing yourself with water from a bottle can feel like diving into a pool without the splash. Sounds bold, I know. But when the sun’s beating down on you, a little shock to the system might be just what the doctor ordered. It’s all about staying cool, folks.

Hot-weather hiking poses several health concerns that hikers should be aware of. Here are some common ones:

When you decide to hike in hot weather, you’re signing up for more than just sweat. The sun’s blazing, and before you know it, you could be dealing with a whole cast of unwelcome guests like dehydration, heat exhaustion, or even heat stroke. All these heat-related illnesses are like uninvited party crashers. And guess what? They’re not fun to hang around with.

So, you’ve got your sun shirts, ditched the denim for something that breathes (looking at you, synthetic fabrics), and you’re reflecting sunlight like a pro. Let’s not forget the essentials: merino wool socks and a proper pair of hiking shoes. Keeping dry and odor-free is a big win here. But remember, the goal is to let your skin breathe and give heat an escape route, not trap it in as it owes you rent. Hiking in the heat is serious business, so gear upright and stay vigilant.

Sunblock factors

Even the best sunshirts have their limits, so here’s the scoop: protect your face, neck, ears, and hands with a layer of sunblock. It’s like drawing a line in the sand against the sun’s rays. And not just any sunblock — I’m talking about the kind that doesn’t play dirty with the reefs or your skin. Zinc oxide and titanium dioxide for the win. Remember, your daypack should have a stash ready for reapplication. The sun isn’t pulling any punches, so neither should you.

Despite your best ensemble, those UVA and UVB rays are sneaky. An ounce of prevention, or in this case, a layer of sunscreen, can save you a world of hurt. And here’s a tip: make it a part of your summer hiking ritual. Slap some on before you step out, and keep slapping it on every couple of hours. The only thing worse than forgetting your sunscreen is ending up as a lobster impersonator by the end of the day.


Drinking water on the trail isn’t just good ol’ hydration; it’s your best defense against the summer heat’s one-two punch. Think of water as your shield against heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Your body’s working overtime out there, so keep the fluids coming. A half-liter every hour should be your starting point, tweak as needed. Because when you’re hiking in hot weather, water is not just water—it’s liquid gold.

Every hiker knows the drill: stay hydrated or risk joining the ranks of those sidelined by heat-related illnesses. But remember, it’s not about guzzling in panic. It’s about sipping steadily, making each drop count. Your hike could turn into a crawl if you’re not mindful of keeping that water intake in check. So, keep that water bottle handy and take care of your thirsty self.

Hydration status

When we’re talking about hiking in hot weather, keeping tabs on your hydration status is like watching the fuel gauge on a long road trip. You don’t want to hit empty. Because dehydration is a sneaky beast. One minute you’re enjoying the trail, and the next, you’re feeling crummy, wondering why you thought hiking in a sauna was a good idea. The trick is to guzzle water like it’s going out of style, but not all at once. Think of it like slow-roasting a brisket – low and steady wins the race.

The amount of H2O you need depends on a bunch of things, like how hot it is and whether you sweat like you’re in a hot yoga class. But a good rule of thumb is about a half liter per hour of moderate hoofing it. If it’s hotter than a pepper sprout, or you’re pushing yourself harder, you’ll need to up the ante. Keeping an eye on your hydration means you’ll steer clear of the nasties like heat cramps, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke. And remember, if you’re tasting your salty sweat, it’s time to hit the water bottle.

Optimal water consumption

Alright, folks, let’s get down to brass tacks. Optimal water consumption isn’t about chugging a gallon of water before you hit the trail and calling it a day. It’s about sipping steadily as you go, keeping that hydration level just right. Imagine you’re a finely tuned engine; you wouldn’t flood the engine with oil, right? Apply the same thinking to water. About a half liter per hour for a casual stroll is on point, but crank it up as the mercury rises or you’re conquering those hills like a boss.

Experienced hikers get a feel for their water needs like they know their shoe size. It becomes second nature. But until you get there, err on the side of caution. It’s better to carry a bit extra and not need it than to run dry. The last thing you want is to be hallucinating about oasis mirages because you underestimated your water needs. Plus, keeping hydrated helps fend off those nasty heat-related baddies waiting to spoil your adventure.

Sodium intake

Now, while we’re hydrating like champs, let’s not forget about our trusty sidekick, sodium. You might be thinking, “Wait, I thought salt was the bad guy?” Well, when you’re sweating buckets on the trail, you’re not just losing water; you’re losing salt too. This is where snacking smart comes into play. Ever heard of hiking snacks? Those tasty morsels aren’t just to keep your belly from growling; they replenish the salt your body’s sweating out. Think pretzels, peanuts, or even some of those fancy electrolyte chews.

But don’t go overboard turning yourself into a salt lick. It’s a delicate balance. Too little sodium, and you’re looking at cramps and fatigue. Too much, and it’s a whole other can of worms. Keep it balanced like you’re walking a tightrope, and you’ll keep your body humming along nicely. Just remember, forethought on the trail beats hindsight in the emergency room any day.

Heat stress

Speaking of tightropes, managing heat stress is all about a balancing act too. Think of heat stress as your body’s alarm system. When it’s going off, it’s telling you, “Hey, cool it down a notch!” Ignoring it could lead you into some serious trouble, like heat exhaustion or even heat stroke territory. Heat cramps are usually the first sign that your body’s not too happy with you. They’re like those annoying pop-up ads but for your muscles, telling you to hydrate and maybe take a breather in a shady spot.

Heat Exhaustion with symptoms

Hiking in hot weather can sometimes turn the dial up to “extreme”. That’s where heat exhaustion likes to crash the party. It sneaks up on you after you’ve been battling the rays and starts with a saga of sweat, feeling like a faucet’s been turned on. Then, the world might get a bit spinny, your heart’s thumping in your chest like you’re at a rock concert, and you might feel faint or dizzy. The fun doesn’t stop there; fatigue, nausea, and headaches may join in, and deciding your trail adventure needs some drama.

The thing is, heat exhaustion doesn’t RSVP; it just shows up. Once you spot those symptoms – heavy sweating, rapid pulse, feeling like you might keel over, it’s time to hit the brakes. Find a shady spot, or if Mother Nature’s not providing, make your shade with a tarp. This isn’t the time for heroics. Pausing in the shade isn’t a defeat; it’s smart. Remember, the great outdoors will still be there after you’ve cooled down and rehydrated.

Treatment of Heat exhaustion

Heat exhaustion is like your body’s way of saying, “I’m mad as heck and I’m not gonna take it anymore!” So, when the signs are all flashing red, it’s time to cool your jets. First, find a shady spot or make one. This is where you turn into a bit of a lounge lizard, taking it easy and catching your breath. Off come the extra layers, because now’s not the time for fashion statements; it’s survival mode. Your body’s been sweating out not just water, but salts too, so grab water and maybe those electrolyte packs you wisely packed.

And folks, don’t just splash water on your face like in those skincare commercials. If there’s a stream or lake handy, use it. Dipping a hat or bandana in cool water and wearing it is like having your air conditioner. And remember, sipping water is key – no chugging. You’re aiming for a cool-down, not a bellyache. This isn’t about toughing it out; it’s about listening to your body and giving it what it needs to keep hiking another day.

tips: How to prevent heat exhaustion

Preventing heat exhaustion starts with respect – respecting the sun, the heat, and your body’s limits. Think of yourself as a wise owl, not a headless chicken running around in the heat. Start your hikes early or aim for the late afternoon when the sun’s not in full bully mode. Dress smart – lightweight, light-colored clothes are your best buds. They’re like your personal cheer squad, helping you keep cool and dry.

Hydration is your number one fan, so treat it right. Begin hydrating before you even step foot on the trail, and keep that water flowing. It’s also smart to buddy up; hiking with someone means you’ve got eyes looking out for heat exhaustion signs in each other. And don’t forget the sunblock. A sunburn not only hurts like heck but can make your body work harder to stay cool. Lastly, be like a boy scout – always prepared. Know the signs of heat exhaustion and have an action plan. Better to have it and not need it, right?

Heat stroke

Now, heat stroke is in another league. We’re talking major leagues of heat trouble here. This bad boy doesn’t tap you on the shoulder; it hits you like a freight train. When your body’s cooling system is so overwhelmed that it throws in the towel, you’re in the danger zone. Symptoms like a throbbing noggin, dizziness, nausea, confusion, and even a rocket-high fever mean it’s time to slam on the brakes and get help.

If you or your hiking buddy are showing those signs, it’s all hands on deck. First, find shade or make it. Get rid of any heavy or extra clothing, use water to cool down, and if possible, fan the person to help. Near water? Lay the person down carefully, making sure they’re safe, to bring their temp down. Remember, heat stroke is the big boss of heat illnesses and needs proper medical attention ASAP. Let’s not meet heat stroke, shall we? Always better to play it cool – literally.

Heat stroke treatment

Treating heat stroke is a serious business. If you’re caught in its grips, cooling down pronto is the name of the game. You want to get out of the sun and into the shade or shelter as fast as possible. Peel off any excess gear because now’s not the time for modesty; we’re talking survival. If you’ve got water handy, start gently applying it to the skin to help turn down the body’s thermostat. A dab here, a splash there – think of it like being a gentle rain shower, not a monsoon.

Fanning the victim can also work wonders, helping to evaporate the water and cool the body. If a stream or lake is nearby, and it’s safe, consider using it to reduce body heat further. But remember, moving someone who’s in bad shape might not always be the best idea, so use your judgment. And, this goes without saying, but get medical help on the line. Heat stroke is no joke, and it needs a pro to handle it. Cooling down is just the first step in a journey that needs medical expertise.

How to prevent heat stroke

Preventing heat stroke is like playing defense against the sun’s mighty rays. Always aim to hike during cooler parts of the day, wear those lightweight clothes, and never underestimate the power of a good hat and sunglasses. Keep that water bottle glued to your hand and sip, sip, sip. Don’t push it; if your body’s whispering (or yelling) at you to take a break, listen. And, if you’re hiking in a group, keep an eye on each other. Heat stroke’s not on the itinerary, so let’s keep it that way with some smart, cool moves.


Hitting the trails under the simmering sun calls for more than just a spirit of adventure. It’s like a puzzle where each piece – from the wide-brimmed hat shielding your noggin from sun exposure to lightweight button-up shirts that let a breeze through easier than telling a toddler no – plays a critical role in your comfort and safety. Opting for cotton shirts might seem old school, but they’re a throwback worth considering for those with sensitive skin, plus they’re kinda like wearing your favorite lightweight blanket. And let’s not forget the importance of SPF 30 sunscreen; it’s like having an invisible shield against the sun’s fiery arrows. If you’re more a fan of the baseball cap look, make sure to pair it with sun sleeves for arm protection; this ain’t just about style, it’s about keeping those sunburns at bay. So, before you venture out, checking your gear against these essentials could mean the difference between a tale of triumph or a story of sun-struck woes.