What to Wear Hiking For Beginners

Are you planning on trekking to ‘hard to reach’ places to capture views of wild Earth? As a newbie to this, where do you start? What gear do you need for this hike? This article covers the basic hiking gear requirements.

Who’s This For?

This is for anyone intending to venture on foot for short or long excursions to capture imagery or views of the landscape or wildlife. You might need to trek some distance to monitor wildlife or get to remote areas for shots using your long-range drone. I have a guide comparing popular long-range drones that are used for this.

Or you may be on a hiking trip to dark locations perfect for stargazing. (I have an article covering some lightweight portable telescopes suitable for portability).

Or, you might be getting out just for the heck of it. This might mean you are going on…

  • Self-guided ventures
  • Guided tours
  • Multiple day hikes
  • Day hiking or night hiking or both

What to Wear Hiking Tips

What do I wear hiking? Choose hiking clothing to suit the weather and terrain of your intended destination. It is best to do some research and find out about the seasonal conditions and terrain of where you intend travelling.

In very wet conditions, consider taking a lightweight rain jacket or waterproof cape. You might need to take rain pants. But, weigh up whether you really need these. The more hiking clothes you pack the less room you will have for other essentials in your backpacking gear.

In cold conditions, you would need hiking shoes with a good pair of merino wool hiking socks. The best hiking pants for the warm weather conditions are ones that allow ventilation. To survive cold weather, consider a thermal base layer. Make sure to include sun protection. This can include a long sleeve shirt with a high sun protection factor, a hat, and sunscreen lotion.

For mild weather conditions, here is a list of basic hiking essentials to wear or pack for an overnight hike…

Hiking Boots

You may want waterproof protection for your feet. Also, look for footwear that’s breathable and allows some give for a comfortable fit.

One of the things hikers can suffer with, from downhill treks, is black toenail. I’ve experienced this. This is a bruising of your toe that develops from the movement of your foot up against the toe of the shoe. Believe me, it is painful, and the swelling will need attention if you intend continuing on the trail.

To reduce your chances of getting black toenails, use the overhand lacing technique for tightening your footwear on downhill treks. Also, having a thumbs-width length of room from your toes to the front of the boot gives your feet room to move and allows you to wear thick protective socks.

Recommended boots

Waterproof and breathable hiking boots available at Amazon – Click image to see more

Scarpa Hiking Boots are Italian handmade. The ones shown are oiled full grain leather and completely waterproof. The beauty of leather is that it gives and breathes. The lining of these also breathes, being Gore-tex. The sole suits all terrain. A pair of these hiking boots weighs 2.3 lbs making them a medium weight boot.

In Australia? Check out the Scarpa Unisex Boots at Wild Earth.

Clothing Options

Tip: Consider weight when purchasing and packing. More weight in your hiking backpack will slow you down.

Woollen Socks

Consider a pair of woollen socks to protect your feet. The merino wool option is worth a look. These would be valued by anyone taking a hiking trip as they are breathable. Include a spare pair.

Woollen Beanie

A lightweight woollen beanie will be of value after the sun goes down and the air cools.

Thermal Underwear Set

Thermal wear is also important for cold nights. For this you can get thermal hiking leggings.

Wool or Fleece Jumper

Make this lightweight and one that will give you enough warmth. Important for the cool mornings and evenings.

Sun Protection

Have a cotton or felt broad brimmed hat for the day. This type should easily fold for storing in your backpack when not needed.

Look for a lightweight long sleeve shirt with a high sun protection factor 


In your hiking wear, pack a set of spare underwear and a spare t-shirt. Lightweight wicking clothing is a good idea.

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3 thoughts on “What to Wear Hiking For Beginners”

  1. Thanks for sharing this helpful information. I’m sure most people can take notes from this article. One thing most people lack experience while hiking. My husband and I have been thinking of going on a hiking trip soon. Well, this post gives us some good ideas for hiking.

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