The following is a clothing checklist for fall hiking. It applies both to children and adults. Once people are experienced with what their bodies require in various weather conditions, we allow individuals to tweak it according to their needs. This list also assumes that you will be spending the entire day outside without the luxury of easily being able to go indoors to warm up. If you are only going out for a couple of hours, you can adjust as necessary.
- Winter hat – a light fleece beanie works great
- Balaclava or Buff (optional) – not required if you are bringing a hoodie (see below). We have found Buffs to be highly versatile pieces of clothing and highly recommend them.
- Wool/synthetic undershirt – For more info on what we like to use, read our article onunderpants.
- Wool/synthetic t-shirt
- Wool/synthetic long-sleeve undershirt
- Light-weight fleece hoodie (preferred) or fleece sweater
- Windbreaker – the lighter weight, the better
- Rain jacket (optional) – whether or not you need this will depend on the forecast. For fall we prefer to bring something waterproof, breathable, and durable. I.e. I wouldn’t recommend a rain poncho.
- Insulated jacket (optional) – Something light-weight and windproof and preferably with a hood. This jacket is meant to be worn at rest stops. If you have to wear this to stay warm when hiking then you aren’t bringing enough other layers. In early fall or late spring when the temperatures are mild we don’t bother with this. In colder weather this becomes essential.
- Wool/Synthetic light-weight gloves or glove liners
- Mitts (optional) – in early fall or late spring when the temperatures are mild we don’t bother with these.
- Light weight hand towel for accidents and wipe downs.
- Wool/synthetic underwear – as with the undershirts, for more info on what we like to use read our article on underpants.
- Wool/synthetic long underwear
- Fleece pants (optional) – some people get cold more easily than others and long underwear isn’t enough.
- Synthetic hiking pants – make sure they are highly wind resistant and durable.
- Rain pants (optional) – whether or not you need this will depend on the forecast. As with the jacket, we prefer to bring something waterproof, breathable, and durable.
- Wool/synthetic liner socks (optional) – in colder weather, these can add a little extra warmth
- Wool socks – the warmer the better
- Waterproof socks (optional) – in cold/wet conditions these are VERY helpful
- Hiking shoes – we like to wear light-weight trail runners
- Gaiters (optional) – we will bring these when we think there might be snow and/or ice
- Crampons (optional) – we will bring these when we think there might be snow and/or ice
If you are going to be hiking in the fall during hunting season, make sure that one of your clothing items is blaze orange. You should also always bring along at least a basic first aid kit.
Be prepared! Outdoor enthusiasts should always carry either a prepackaged first-aid kit or a DIY kit created using our comprehensive list as a guide.
Basic Care: Prepackaged first-aid kits available at REI typically contain many of the following items:
- Antiseptic wipes (BZK-based wipes preferred; alcohol-based OK)
- Antibacterial ointment (e.g., bacitracin)
- Compound tincture of benzoin (bandage adhesive)
- Assorted adhesive bandages (fabric preferred)
- Butterfly bandages/adhesive wound-closure strips
- Gauze pads (various sizes)
- Nonstick sterile pads
- Medical adhesive tape (10-yd. roll, min. 1″ width)
- Blister treatment (e.g., Moleskin, 2nd Skin, Glacier Gel)
- Ibuprofen/other pain-relief medication
- Insect-sting relief treatment (e.g., AfterBite)
- Antihistamine to treat allergic reactions
- Splinter (fine-point) tweezers
- Safety pins, lightweight towels
- First-aid manual or information cards