Over the years, I've put together a list of my Day Hiking Essentials. I keep my backpack ready at all times and only add food and drinks at the last minute so they're always fresh.
But I did not make a list of what I wear...
It's usually pretty straightforward. The idea is to be protected from the sun, the wind, the rain, the cold, etc., and to plan accordingly by choosing the appropriate gear in the following categories.
Crewneck, long or short sleeves: depending on the weather
Long bottoms: depending on the weather, to wear underneath hiking pants
Polyester/nylon and wool are recommended for moisture management, make your own choice according to what works for you in terms of comfort, ethics, and sustainability.
Jacket or puffer jacket: depending on the weather
Leggings or pants: depending on the weather and terrain
- Rainjacket, which I usually keep in my backpack and use against the wind and rain (all seasons)
Hat or beanie: depending on the weather
Gloves: depending on the weather
Hiking boots: No matter how long the hike, I'll wear my boots, I sprain my ankles easily and need the support.
I usually wear leggings when going on hikes but was glad when Colatree offered to send me gear to test as I had been meaning to give their Trailhead Pants a try for a little while (I had seen their Kickstarter).
And here's a complete list of my hiking essentials.
Coalatree Trailhead Pants Review
Fit / Sizing
The Traihead pants are unisex but offer 2 different fits: regular and slim. I chose my usual size (M) in the regular fit (because my thighs and booty are not "slim").
The size guide is pretty detailed so I would recommend having a look because I must say I was surprised to realize that the M is actually a M/L (as shown on the tag).
I contacted customer service and here's the explanation:
"The regular fit trailheads do say S/M, M/L, L/XL, etc to indicate that they are regular fit rather than slim fit. Despite the dual sizing on the tag, the M/L is just the medium and there are 10 total options available."
The pants fit me really great at the calves but were quite bulky at the belly, so I eventually decided to size down to a S, without choosing the slim fit, following the customer service recommendations.
"If the medium regular fit is not working out for you, I would recommend either the small regular fit or the medium slim fit. The medium slim will be similar to the small regular but a bit slimmer in the calves."
So my tip is to check your measurements in the size guide and email customer service if you have any doubts.
These pants feel super light and are extra comfy (once you find the right fit), thanks to the 4-way stretch (up-down, left-right).
The pockets are super, super deep because the pants are packable, like a sleeping bag. There's even a little fabric hook at the bottom which I thought could also be useful to secure your keys.
The drawstrings at the waist and the ankles are cute, but not useful per se, unless you want to make your pants shorter by tying the strings above your calves...
My only (minor) complaint, the gusset feels a little stiff, but this might evolve with wear.
The fabric is waterproof, breathable, 4-way stretch, anti-microbial and tear-resistant. I haven't had the opportunity to stress test the last 2 features yet but can attest to the 3 first ones.
The pants are available in 5 colors: black, olive, grey, dark blue, and sand. I chose the sand color because I already own black and green hiking pants/leggings and because grey and blue are not in my color palette. Yes, I have a color palette, even for outdoor activities.
It's a yes. I like the idea of unisex clothing, as long as it's done well, with detailed measurements and guidelines. If you ever need a new pair of hiking pants, the Coalatree Trailhead Adventure Pants are a great option.
Colatree gifted me a pair of Trailhead Pants. This post is NOT sponsored, but when you shop via some of the links I may make a small commission. Thanks for supporting the carefully selected brands that support Conscious by Chloé!
What are your hiking essentials?