How many times have you had plans for a fun outdoor excursion only to have cold, rainy, or other inclement weather “ruin” your plans? There is a widely held belief that there need to be “perfect” weather for certain activities. But with the right gear, and the right attitude, you can enjoy the outdoors in any weather and still have a great time. You just need to know what the possibilities are and prepare for them – then hit the trail (or lake or DIY project or jobsite).
What is the temperature going to be like where you are? Starting cool and getting warmer, cooling as you climb in altitude, pretty consistently cool due to overcast? These are all things needed to consider in choosing the right gear. But it isn’t just the weather forecast you need to consider when thinking about temperature swings – think about how much warmer or cooler you’ll be throughout the day because of the activity you are doing. Will you be sitting still on a lake fighting wind, or constantly in motion working or hiking? The level of protection you need will vary depending on your activity.
Layering is a key component to temperature control for outdoor work or activities because it allows you to easily adjust based on how warm or cold you are. Vests are great for layering, as are base-layers and sweatshirts and fleece. The important thing is to choose clothing that when paired together will keep you comfortable in the coolest temperatures you’ll face and that can be removed to keep you comfortable in the warmest temperatures you’ll face.
Beating the Rain, Wind, and Other Conditions
It doesn’t matter the season, you need to be prepared for any conditions – even snow in summer (snow can even happen in Florida – though, sure, not during the summer). But other than freak snow conditions, you need to think about regular weather events like rain and wind. So whether you wake up to rain or wind and still want to get out there, or you are going out and just want to be prepared, you need gear that is a match for what you might encounter.
What makes great wind and rain protection? Material and coatings that prevent wind and moisture from penetrating, but that are breathable so sweat can still evaporate and you don’t overheat. Unlined versions are best for consistently warm conditions, where lined versions are better when temperatures might get cool because of the rain or wind. All Season gear usually offers variations with multiple options: hooded, unlined, midweight, fleece materials, 3-in-1 versatility, and more.
Don’t Forget Your Feet
Flip flops are great for the beach, but please don’t select them for working or doing other activities outdoors – especially in inclement weather. You want proper boots for the activity you are doing – especially if it is raining and slippery surfaces become an issue. And don’t forget socks! Keep your feet comfortable and dry with moisture wicking socks that provide arch and ankle support.
Choose the right gear and you don’t have let a little wind, rain, snow or other type of weather stop you from getting outside. You might even discover you like certain activities better in less-than-perfect conditions.