Camping sounds like a great experience but it can fail without the right gear and clothing.
How can that happen?
My boyfriend and I faced unexpected weather and fluctuating temperatures in just one day, and we didn’t have clothes for those weather conditions. Worse, we didn’t think about the changing weather when preparing to go camping, so we forgot our raincoats and waterproof clothing. And you can imagine the time we had.
After that experience, we always take complete equipment on camping trips, so we can confidently recommend how you can prepare for all camping adventures and share with you the most valuable tips on what to wear camping.
In this article, you’ll have all the information on camping outfits and shoes to bring when it’s cold or warm.
You will stay warm, dry, and safe with the proper camping clothing. In addition, I will pay attention to what you should not bring camping. Thus, I aim to help you pack as practically as possible and enjoy your camping adventure no matter what.
For those who are in a hurry and need a quick answer on what to wear camping when it’s both hot and cold, here is the complete list of must-have camp clothing essentials:
- T-shirt or Tank Top
- Quick-Drying Shorts and Pants
- Moisture-Wicking Camping Clothing
- Rain Jacket
- Quick-Drying Socks
- Hiking Boots
So, let’s get started and help you choose the perfect camping outfit ideas!
Table of Contents
What to Keep in Mind When Choosing What to Wear Camping?
From the moment you prepare for your camping trip to the moment you arrive at the campsite, there are a few things to remember.
Weather is one of the more critical factors on your camping trips that affect what you will bring from the wardrobe.
Look at the weather forecast for expected high or low temperatures, cloudiness, wind, or thunder.
Depending on the time of year and location, you can expect cold, sunny, or rainy weather. It’s essential to research the area for your camping trip to determine the best time to go and what type of camping gear to bring.
How Much Clothing Do You Take on Camping
First, come in a comfortable arrival outfit. When you go camping, pack clothes as lightly as possible and bring only the things you will carry there according to the weather and the outdoor activities you will be doing.
The key is to bring clothing you will use for multiple purposes. For example, waterproof or rain jackets will solve all your problems if you have appropriate rain gear, especially when you encounter inclement weather.
Additionally, you should bring layered clothing such as a sweater or vest and moisture-wicking camping clothes.
Also, you should pack clothes that are easy to clean, such as cotton and polyester. Finally, bring a few swimsuits and quick-drying towels if you swim.
Packing Clothes for Day and Night
If you pack separate camping outfits for day and night, you can ensure that you have adequate equipment for every situation.
During the day, it’s best to pack light clothes to keep you comfortable, especially if you go on long walks. It’s vital to bring warmer clothes for the evening as the temperatures are usually lower wherever you are.
When camping, it’s essential to dress in layers to keep warm and pack separate outfits to make it easier for you when unpacking. The three primary layers to keep you comfortable at all times are:
- A base layer of light clothing, such as a t-shirt and leggings, will keep your clothes warm and dry. The base-only layer includes a vest, t-shirt, shorts, tank top, or underwear.
- An insulating middle layer, such as a sweater or fleece jacket, will keep you warm when it’s cold and allow your body to breathe. It can also be a jumper, hoodie, or down jacket.
- Finally, water-resistant outer layers such as a raincoat or windbreaker are essential to protect you from cooler weather and wind. Some of the outer layers can be waterproof jackets such as Columbia Hikebound Waterproof Jacket.
With suitable packing, you will be ready for activity quickly and efficiently, whether in the base or outer layer.
Sleeping Camping Clothes
Besides the clothes, you’ll wear all day, remember your sleepwear for a comfortable night’s sleep. When camping, it’s essential to consider the temperature of the environment and the type of sleeping bag you use.
Light and breathable fabrics, such as polyester and linen, are great for camping in warm weather, while fleece and wool are more suitable for cooler temperatures. Also, consider wearing layers for extra warmth, such as a long-sleeve shirt, long underwear, and long pants, which can serve as base layers.
Finally, if you spend much time outdoors, consider investing in quality camping boots such as Salomon Quest Element GORE-TEX Hiking Boots to keep your feet warm and dry.
Outfit Ideas For Any Camping Trip All Year Round!
Outfit ideas include comfortable clothes for every season. It would be best to have adequate equipment, whether pants or shorts, short or long sleeve shirts, sneakers or boots, sunglasses or a scarf.
Let’s see what clothes and camping gear you should wear on your next trip.
What To Wear Camping?
Wearing light and breathable wardrobe is essential when camping in the spring or summer. Choose loose and comfortable clothes, and bring several layers in case of the temperature drops during the day or evening. Natural fabrics like cotton, linen, and bamboo can help keep you cool.
In winter, thick layers of clothing such as sweaters, hoodies, and down jackets such as the Cotopaxi Fuego Hooded Down Jacket are an unavoidable part of your outfit.
We’re going to list the essential clothes to wear camping when it’s both hot and cold:
T-shirt or Tank Top
T-shirts with short or long sleeves and tank tops are perfect for spring and summer camping attire, but they are also one of the best base layers in cooler conditions.
The light fabric will keep you cool in hot weather and make you feel comfortable, especially when the sun shines. And in winter, it will provide you with an extra layer of warmth after you put on a sweater and a jacket.
What’s great is that you can lay t-shirts on each other to give yourself multiple layers of protection in colder weather. You can combine them with shorts and tracksuits.
The critical thing to remember, whether it’s hot or cold when camping, is to bring long sleeve shirt.
If you also go to fall camping, t-shirts are a perfect choice.
Quick-Drying Shorts and Pants
Quick-drying shorts, cargo pants, REI Rainier Full Zip rain pants, and convertible pants such as REI Co-op Sahara are indispensable in every seasonal camping wardrobe. They are light and comfortable, perfect for hiking, swimming, and other activities.
Their quick-drying and moisture-wicking material makes them ideal for camping in warm temperatures when you sweat more and when it’s cold and go for long walks.
Moisture-Wicking Camping Clothing
Moisture-wicking clothing is invaluable when camping during the warmer spring and summer months. This type of fabric helps keep you dry by quickly wicking away moisture and wicking away sweat, reducing the risk of chafing and skin irritation.
You can wear moisture-wicking camping clothes as an outer layer of insulation or a stand-alone garment.
A rain jacket is one of the essential camping clothes if you get caught in rainy weather, and you still plan to do your activities or go on long walks. It protects you from weather disasters and keeps you warm and dry.
Choosing lightweight rain jackets with hoods and pockets for extra protection would be best. We recommend THE NORTH FACE Men’s Venture 2 Waterproof Hooded Rain Jacket.
Whether it’s a summer camping trip, a winter camping trip, or fall, it can rain. And if it doesn’t rain, you should always bring a rain jacket or raincoat.
Also, if you expect heavy rain or storms at your campsite, equipment such as Bogs Digger rain boots or Timberland Mt. Maddsen Mid Waterproof Hiking Boots is necessary.
As a base layer, we recommend a Cotopaxi Fuego Hooded Down Jacket for colder conditions.
Going to the river and lake is always exciting, but it’s only possible with a bathing suit, especially camping in the summer. When camping, a swimsuit is an essential item to pack.
A bathing suit can also be a great way to cool off on a hot day.
In addition, the swimsuit can be easily packed and stored in a backpack or suitcase, making it a great outfit for any camping trip.
Bringing Aqua X Sports Water Shoes for this type of activity is a good idea. It keeps your feet safe and dry as you explore rivers, lakes, and beaches. Water shoes also provide protection from sharp rocks as well as a barrier against bacteria in the water. But flip-flops are enough for the beach.
Suppose it rains while camping, quick-drying socks are the ideal solution. Quick drying helps keep your socks dry even after you get in the water, allowing you to put them back on without waiting to dry.
They are very light, which makes them ideal for camping.
Also, remember cold days and the need for thick wool socks (ultra-fine Merino wool) and thick socks.
Camping activities often require a good pair of hiking shoes, such as the fantastic Merrell Moab 3, that can handle a range of terrain, from rocky and hilly to sandy and muddy.
So, look for shoes with strong treads that won’t slip when wet and a good fit that will provide support and protection while you explore the outdoors, especially on hiking trails.
Additionally, waterproof shoes are essential if you are expecting rain. Besides, running shoes on trail runners are a great choice if you plan to go for long walks and do some sports activities. Our recommendation is Merrell Moab 3 Waterproof Hiking Shoes.
With the right pair of shoes, you can tackle any terrain confidently.
Boots provide the necessary protection for your feet when hiking on rough terrain.
Make sure you buy waterproof hiking boots so you have comfortable footwear. I’m a huge fan of Quest Element Gore-TEX from Salomon. I have used them for years and will definitely stay with this brand for a long time.
These boots also provide extra grip on slippery surfaces and help prevent blisters and other foot ailments.
Equip Yourself With Accessories
Quality camping is only possible with accessories for various activities and weather conditions.
Here are some you can’t imagine your outdoor adventure without.
A sun hat is a must if you go camping in the spring, especially in the summer. They come in different shapes, but the wide-brim cap is the most recommended for sun protection.
Also, a hat is suitable for cold-weather camping and can protect against bad weather such as wind, rain, and snow. Also, a hat can add some style to your camping outfit.
Whether you choose a wide-brimmed hat or a smaller hat that fits more snugly on your head, it will serve a useful purpose.
Sunglasses are one of the essential accessories for summer camping. Sunglasses protect your eyes from the sun, reduce eye strain, and make it easier to see particular objects or animals in nature.
When choosing glasses, pay attention to UV protection. Note that polarized lenses help reduce glare and make it easier to see in bright light, while coated frames offer more protection from wind and dust.
Headlamps are a must-have accessory for camping! It gives you light in the dark and provides additional protection, especially when hiking. Headlamps are beneficial for activities like hiking, setting up camp, and foraging. They allow you to navigate the trails around the camp. I use Petzl Tikka Headlamp.
Protecting your skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays is vital during summer. Sunscreen helps prevent sunburn and long-term skin damage. Be sure to choose a waterproof sunscreen with a high SPF rating.
Also, choose a sun protection cream according to your skin type.
Bug repellent is a must-have item for any camping trip. This will eliminate annoying bugs and reduce the risk of being bitten by insects carrying diseases.
When using this product, apply evenly over the skin, focusing on the hands and feet.
You can enjoy camping without worrying about pesky insects with the correct bug repellent, such as Repel 100.
Choose Suitable Fabrics For Camping!
When choosing the proper camping fabrics, it is essential to consider the environment you will be in and the weather conditions.
For example, waterproof fabrics such as nylon or polyester are best when the weather conditions are humid, while breathable fabrics such as cotton or wool are best in dry climates.
A light, comfortable, and durable fabric is suitable for outdoor activities.
Here is the list of materials to consider when camping:
- Cotton – Cotton is an excellent material for keeping warm at low temperatures and is very absorbent, especially in case of humidity. In addition, cotton is naturally hypoallergenic, so it is an excellent material if you are sensitive to synthetics.
- Wool – Wool helps keep you warm without feeling too hot and is ideal for winter conditions. It’s also waterproof and fireproof, allowing you to protect yourself from possible burns.
- Polyester/nylon – Polyester and nylon camping clothes are lightweight, durable, and quick drying, making them perfect for hiking, camping, and other activities. This type of fabric is very comfortable to wear in summer. It is resistant to mold, which is suitable for camping in wet conditions.
- Silk – Silk camping clothes are comfortable, but also clothes where you want to look stylish. Silk camping clothes come in various styles, including shirts, pants, and jackets. They’re great for layering and keep you dry in wet conditions.
What Not To Wear On Camping Trips?
When camping, it’s essential to dress appropriately and comfortably, so avoid wearing camping clothes that are too tight, thin, or uncomfortable.
Instead, opt for lightweight synthetic and elastic materials that wick away moisture. Depending on the purpose, the best thermal insulation is “fleece.”
Consider packing jeans only for outdoor use. Harsh climatic conditions will not spare delicate fabrics but will visibly damage them.
Avoid wearing jewelry that could get caught on branches, so avoid any natural accessories. There are always practical pockets where you can store your small things.
What To Wear Camping in Cold Weather?
When camping in cold weather, it’s essential to dress in layers.
You’ll want a base layer of moisture-wicking fabric to keep sweat away from your skin, a middle layer of insulation to keep you warm, and an outer layer that is windproof and waterproof. Consider wearing a synthetic shirt and pants or a long-sleeved thermal shirt and leggings for the base layer. A fleece jacket or vest can provide extra warmth for the middle layer. A waterproof and breathable jacket and pants are essential for the outer layer.
A warm hat, gloves, and a scarf can also be helpful to keep your head, hands, and neck warm.
What To Wear Camping in Summer?
When camping in the summer, it’s vital to dress in lightweight, breathable clothing that keeps you cool and protects you from the sun.
For the top, wear a lightweight, long-sleeved shirt made of breathable cotton or linen to protect your skin from sunburn. A wide-brimmed hat can also be helpful to keep the sun off your face.
For the bottom, convertible pants made of breathable fabric will keep you cool and comfortable.
For footwear, I recommend closed-toe shoes or hiking boots to protect your feet, provide support for hiking, and ensure they are comfortable and breathable.
Additionally, sunglasses, sunscreen, and insect repellent can protect you from the sun and bugs.
Remember to bring comfortable and breathable clothing for sleeping and enough clothes changes in unexpected situations.
What to wear when camping is equally important, whether hot or cold.
In this article, you had the opportunity to find out precisely what clothes to wear on a camping trip at a specific time of the year. From base to outer layers, you find an extensive choice of camping outfits and ways to stay cool in every situation.
You must prepare everything for your adventure on time; the rest is just enjoyment.
What do you think about this article? Feel free to write your thoughts, experience, and some fun stories in the comments. We would like to hear from you! Thank you