The Go Wild Go West blog

5 Winter Outdoor Essentials for Men

The key to winter adventuring is having practical, warm and waterproof gear that you can rely on. As temperatures drop and wintery weather moves in, it’s worth checking that your outdoor kit is fit for purpose.

I’ve written guides on winter outdoor clothing for women and children, so now it’s time for the best winter kit for men…

*For this feature, I have to thank my husband who has been ‘chief-tester’, diligently heading out in all weathers to try out various items of kit.

outdoor clothing for men
Testing in all weathers! Tog 24 Denton coat and Revolution Race trousers

How to buy winter outdoor kit for men sustainably

Before buying anything new, have a think about whether you can get this second hand from somewhere like Vinted (which has a huge range of great outdoor gear), or whether you can repair your current kit. Alpkit do a fantastic repair service on any brands.

If this isn’t an option, resist the temptation to buy the first thing you find on google and consider who and what to invest in. Cheaper kit is tempting but the quality can be pretty poor meaning it won’t last long. Likewise, the sustainability credentials of some brands is sadly still lacking so it’s worth doing some research.

Brands like Patagonia, Finisterre, Cotopaxi, Vaude, Fjallraven, Columbia, Craghoppers and Dakine are all leading the way putting sustainable and environmental business practices, along with high quality, at their core.

1. Winter Coats for Men

It goes without saying that a decent winter coat is the best tool in your winter adventure armoury. A thin waterproof coat just won’t cut it when the temperature drops and you’re being battered by sleety rain and arctic blasts. Here are our favourite winter coats for men…

  • Tog24 – Denton Mens waterproof 3-in-1 jacket
    Based in Yorkshire, Tog24 knows how to design kit that will stand up to some pretty challenging weather conditions. Mike has worn this jacket in torrential rain, on windy mountain tops and on the coldest of days and it’s been an absolute gem. It’s a year-round coat; for winter, it has an insulated inner jacket for warmth but this can be removed in warmer months so it can be used as a light waterproof. Brilliant.
  • Finisterre – Men’s Nebulas Insulated Jacket
    We’ve always gone to Finisterre for winter jackets because they’re so warm! The Nebulus is made using recycled plastic insulation. It’s toasty warm, looks great and is shower proof (*it won’t keep you bone dry on the torrential days)
mens outdoor kit
Tog 24 coat, Revolution Race Trousers, Osprey Backpack

2. Waterproof and walking trousers for Men

  • Revolution Race – Nordwand Pro Trousers
    As a family, we’re a little smitten with Revolution Race. Mike liked my trousers so much, he bought some for himself! These are just brilliant all-round outdoor trousers; hiking, biking or anything else, they’re hard-wearing, warm and splash proof/quick drying.
  • Waterproof trousers for men – Vaude Escape 2.5L Pants
    This is a great choice for waterproof trousers. Waterproof, breathable and with a ¾ length zip to make getting them on and off over boots easy. They’re also Green Button certified so comply to the highest sustainability standards.

3. Thermals and Fleeces for Men

As well as a coat, layers are vital for staying warm on winter adventures. These are a few of our favourite winter layer ideas.

  • Craghoppers Men’s CO2 Renu fleece
    This fleece has been brilliant to test both on our outdoor adventures and in our freezing cold house! It’s comfy, warm AND uses incredible technology to convert pollution into material. Cheaper fleeces are often massively unsustainable so I’m thrilled to see a greener choice on the market. Hats off to Craghoppers, leading the way in transforming carbon emissions into material.
  • Patagonia- Men’s Nano-Air® Light Vest
    We love this little gillet-style jacket from Patagonia. It can be worn either under your coat or over baselayers on dry days. The idea is that the FullRange™ insulation gets rid of excess heat when you’re working hard, but keeps your warm when you need it. It looks good too.

Thermals for men

Don’t forget thermal layers too! Your baselayers should be warm but breathable so you don’t sweat when you’re active. On the cheaper side, Tog24 have a great range of thermal baselayers whilst NordicOutdoor have some beautiful woollen thermals with high sustainability credentials.

mens outdoor winter kit
Craghoppers CO2 Renu Fleeces

4. Gloves, Hats and Socks for Men

No winter kit list is complete without gloves, hats and socks.

  • Gloves;

The way I see it, there are two types of gloves… thinner, more flexible ones for activities like biking, milder temperature hiking, tree climbing, running etc etc and thicker gloves for colder hikes, skiing, and standing around watching the kids playing in the park…

Our favourite glove brand is Hestra. The Swedes are good at winter clothing and this Swedish brand is no different. Their gloves also look great!

The full collection can be seen here with different gloves for all different needs but we can recommend the Ergo Grip Vector for colder activities and the Ergo Grip Enduro for biking and similar activities.

Alternatively, we love Alpkit’s lightweight Mica gloves – great for keeping your hands warm on drier days. I love the style too.

mens winter gloves
Alpkit Mica gloves
  • Hats

There are so many hats on the market to choose from but our absolute favourite is Finisterre’s RNLI Pom Beanie because it’s made from merino wool and 10% of every sale goes to the RNLI.

  • Woolly socks!

Don’t forget your thick, thermal socks; Blundstone do a beautiful pair of Merino Wool socks that we can personally vouch for.

5. Winter accessories

There are a few other pieces of kit that might be useful for your winter adventures.

  • Head torch

A head torch is great for after-dark adventures. After years of head torches breaking or quickly dimming, we’ve finally found a brilliant one! The Petzl Swift RL is pricey but it’s a perfect example of investing in a quality, lasting product. Mike get’s cross because we all steal his head torch….

  • Backpack

Important for stashing extra layers, drinks, snacks and all your other winter adventure gear, a backpack is a great piece of kit.

We’ve always chosen Osprey Packs because they’re designed for adventure with plenty of pockets, breathable mesh and a well-fitting, adjustable shape. You can also get a Hydraulics™ water pouch as a handy alternative to water bottles.

best outdoor gear for men
Osprey backpack, Tog24 Denton Jacket and Revolution Race trousers
  • Re-usable hand warmers

On the really cold days, you may appreciate a little extra warmth. Lifesystems have a choice of reusable hand warmers that are perfect for the job.

  • Thermos flask

Whether you need a coffee, tea, hot squash or cheeky hot chocolate with rum, a thermos is great for winter adventures; Klean Kanteen has a great range.