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Fashion Hiking Gear Must Haves for the Practical Gal
Fashion hiking gear must haves for the woman who wants to look great but be practical
Are you sick of oversized masculine hiking gear that is available in one colour? If like me you have suffered for years with the war between fashion and practicality the good news is that designers are finally waking up and combining both. Yay.
This lens is a tribute to having women's fashion hiking gear that has style and practicality in one; for those of us who want to be active yet still have the choice of shape and colour.
Is the War between Fashion and Practicality Finally Over?
Judging by the flimsy fashion sandals and shoes that fall apart within weeks I doubt it. The good news for those of us who love the outdoors is that our needs are finally being considered in design, colour and style combined with the need for a practical use.
There always seemed to be women who dressed practically or women who trek rough terrain in heals - yes heals! They do this to look good. However I cannot understand how they will look so great when they fall face down in cow dung or worse still end up with a broken leg but the alternative is just not something that can be considered for many women and that is dull boring clothes.
Growing up in the country taught me to be practical first and foremost. Fashion was not something that was even considered.
On reaching my teens I discovered fashion. With money spare to buy clothes and shoes I embarked on the world of high heels and dresses. However in discovering this other world I also discovered that fashion and practicality did not mix. Something that was comfortable was fuddy duddy and something fashionable just didn't have any sense to it.
Had I been a bit more business savvy back then I might have invented the practical fashion line, but I didn't and it is only in recent years that designers have come at least in part to put some women's fashion into things like hiking boots and jackets.
Below I have put together some great hiking gear for women that comes with some style and a range of colours without losing the practical edge that is vital when out in the wilds.
Comfort Hiking Boot for Women
I confess that part of the reason I chose these is they reminded me of the boots I used to trek the Milford Trek. Though my boots weren't such great quality they were a lovely defiant shade of red! This raised a few eyebrows!
A little bit of fashion goes a long way. These boots prove that it is possible to be both practical and stylish at the same time. You can look great and wear the right gear. I like these as they are very practical and well built and most of us ladies know colour co-ordination is important (yes even for us less fashion conscious ladies!).
These boots come in many different colours including at least two browns, purple, black grey and purple - well you get the picture. They also look less chunky than most women's hiking boots that normally look like sized down versions of men's boots. For those of us with small feet that is a blessing and for women who have larger feet they just don't need that emphasized thank you!
I am very picky about tread. If you are out in all conditions then you want good non slip tread. The tread on these isn't as deep as I would like but they are thick and non slip. Both vital elements when going over rough terrain.
They have all the elements you's expect in a great boot, including wick away material to remove moisture and keep your feet dry which I find important and they stop pressure on your toes as well. Vital for any steep downhill walking.
They fit really well and are really comfortable. You can get away with these for lighter or mid range back packs but may feel you want something stronger if you carry larger weights of 10lb or more.
And yes they do come in red!
Best Hiking Boots for Women
I love cargo's and use them for just about all occasions where I can. They are the perfect pant; lightweight, cool yet warm when needed easy to dry after washing and practical.
However my one irritation (being slightly on the wide side) is that they are quite baggy. You need room to move when walking however cargo's are just too baggy sometimes. These are lovely and slim line while being both practical and fashionable.
Another great thing about cargos is that they dry quickly which is important if you are on the trail. Jeans by comparison are heavy when wet and chafe.
What I like about these is they are very mobile and give plenty of movement and they let you breathe. And they have plenty of pockets.
Hiking Up Hills
3. Lightweight Shirt
Some people prefer T shirts while others prefer shirts. Whichever your preference it is good to get one that whips away sweat, breathes and dries quickly. I like my shirts loose and use them as an over-shirt. You'd be amazed at how they keep you both warm in the cold and cool you down in hot weather.
I like this because it is wrinkle resistant and comes in 5 colours. While I have no real objection to wrinkles (on clothes at least) I do object to ironing so this would be well worth it just for that.
I think having a shirt like this that is wicking and yet allows a breeze is vital for walking in open spaces. I always wore mine over my T shirt while out on the moors and it kept me warm yet cool and it had a sun protective layer too, which this shirt does have. I like the fit and flare design as it gives a bit of shape while also giving plenty of room for movement and across the shoulders. Ventilation is importnat and it also has vents.
4. One Fleece 18 Colours
Fleeces are very important whether you are hiking or sitting in a cold house keeping warm is vital, I know I used to live in a flat that was an ice box! A fleece is a very vital layer.
Wow 18 colours. That should suit almost everyone. I love this fleece. However I know my sister wouldn't buy it as is doesn't cover the bum area. If that isn't a concern then this is a great fleece with a full zip which is always a bonus.
This is a lovely warm and cosy fleece and very good value compared to other fleeces. It is generous with material and roomy at your normal size. Warm enough to use in the winter yet also works well in autumn (fall) and spring.
I find fleece vital both as outdoor gear for walking and also gardening and just using them in general. I appreciate everyone has different lifestyles so this won't suit everyone, but it just goes to show how versatile they are.
Practical & Fashionable in One
6. Backpacks are Beautiful
My Favourite piece of kit the Backpack or Rucksack - my sister says I am obsessed with rucksacks having every size from purse up to full trekking sack. Even my purse (handbag) is a leather rucksack.