After such a brutally hot summer, fall kind of crept up on us this year. But it’s finally time to say goodbye to swimming hole plunges, and hello to crisp, leaf-peeping hikes. When it comes to fall hiking in these parts, the name of the game is layering. A thoughtful collection of layers will help you handle even the muddiest trails, chilliest gusts, and most sudden of downpours. Whether you’re checking out the foliage or scaling a new summit, this gear will keep you warm, dry, and comfortable through it all.
First, you’re going to need a super-comfy, super-breathable base layer like this Merino wool shirt from Portland-based outdoor adventure company Showers Pass. It’ll provide some solid insulation and protection whether you’re hiking, trail running, or even mountain biking. $89
This pair of long johns comes from the folks at Seattle-based Beyond who have literally gotten layering down to a science. A blend of wool and synthetic fibers, these long johns are the opposite of bulky. $55
A good pair of socks is the most important piece of hiking gear you have (no, I’m not joking.) Without said good pair of socks, you risk blisters, frostbite, and your dignity. You can’t get much better than these ultra-cushiony wool and nylon socks from Darn Tough. They’ve got little aliens on them! And if that doesn’t sweeten the pot enough for you, these bad boys have an unconditional warranty for life. $26
The buttons on this fleece pullover from Portland-based Mountain Hardwear give it some versatility, especially if you’re wearing it as your final layer. It’s also covered by a limited lifetime warranty just in case you’re attacked by a rogue Bigfoot. $89
If you are simply unable to figure out this newfangled layering stuff on your own, the folks at Oregon’s most popular outdoor brand Columbia will do it for you. Their Drop Ridge Interchange Jacket …….