Layering is such a simple idea and yet people can still get it wrong. Your expedition is likely to involve cold or wet weather and wearing the wrong clothing can take all the fun out it.
It might seem like the right decision to wear a thick coat whilst on your expedition, but wearing several thinner layers is by far the best solution. These can be added or removed depending on the weather.
To help you be prepared and make sure you get the most out of your next DofE expedition or outdoor adventure, Craghoppers have explained what the layering system is and why it’s important.
When should you use the layering system?
Using the layering system when you are walking in the outdoors, and particularly in cold weather, is a great way to keep your core body temperature at its optimum level.
The wicking layer
The wicking layer (also known as the base layer) is worn closest to your body to help move body moisture and sweat away from the skin, regulating your temperature.
Choose sport or technical t-shirts for an expedition as these tend to be lightweight and quick drying. Avoid a cotton top which, once it gets wet, will stay wet for longer, becoming heavy and very uncomfortable.
The DofE recommended Craghoppers Atmos Short Sleeved T-Shirt for men and women is perfect for day-long comfort.
The mid layer
Working with the wicking layer, the mid layer provides insulation, directing your body heat back into your body and preventing cold air from cooling you down.
A microfleece or softshell jacket is perfect for this as they are quick drying and will keep as much heat in as possible, whilst blocking out the wind.
Craghoppers has a variety of mid layers to choose from including the cosy Stromer which is available in jacket and half zip neck or the hooded Mannix fleece jacket, which is made from recycled materials and features stretch fleece panels for ease of movement. These pieces can be easily packed into a rucksack when you need to cool down.
The waterproof outer layer
When planning your DofE expedition, don’t forget that you will be outside most of the time, so a carefully chosen waterproof jacket is a must – you never know when it might rain.
Look for “waterproof” and not “showerproof” or “water resistant” to ensure that you are kept dry even in sudden or unexpected weather changes.
Your jacket is the final piece in the “layering puzzle” – ensuring that all of the heat from the wicking base and mid layers will not be lost if you are caught in a downpour or have a drop in temperature.
The practical, lightweight and stylish Atlas and Orion jackets will keep you dry, thanks to the AquaDry waterproof and breathable membrane technology. For longer expeditions or more challenging weather, consider a higher-performing waterproof with added stretch technology, such as the new Explore jacket.
We all agree that you can never rely on the great British weather, so it’s always advisable to be prepared when out on expedition! By using the simple layering technique of a wicking base, an insulating mid layer and a waterproof jacket – and packing your layers at the top of a sturdy rucksack – you’ll be prepared, whatever the weather.
Save at least 10% on all your expedition clothing at the DofE Recommended Retailers of Expedition Kit.
Always show your DofE Card. You’ll get the best savings and help support young people doing their DofE. Find out more.