Be aware of Fabrics to Make Smart Outdoor Clothing Choices

Know the Fabrics to generate Smart Outdoor Clothing Choices

Dressing to outlive in the outdoors starts with understanding what fabrics to put on. Different fabrics have radically different properties. Deciding on the wrong type, or mixing clothing of different materials, may be disastrous!


You might not manage to tell what a garment is made of by looking. A pleasant, fuzzy, thick 100-percent cotton flannel shirt will be cozy and warm until it gets wet. Then that wet shirt may suck the temperature out of your torso and cause hypothermia!

On the other side of the equation is wool. My hands-down favorite during the cold months, wool, generally is a bad decision for a desert hike in August. Wool traps heat, and while it offers a superior some UV protection, the pad will prevent your body from cooling.
So, the buyer needs to beware.

Before choosing any clothing item, read the labels and discover exactly what the materials are. Ignore fashion or what’s trendy (I realize that’s hard – I have a 14-year-old daughter!), and make your investment in line with the activity and the clothing protection that will be needed.

Below are a few common fabric choices:

* Cotton: According to your geographical area, cotton clothing can kill you. Cotton is hydrophilic, meaning go for good at wicking wetness out of the skin, which enable it to become damp simply by coming in contact with humidity.

Both these 100% cotton garments would help keep you warm until they received wet. Then, this clothing becomes dangerous to use!

Once wet, cotton feels cold and will lose as much as 90 % of their insulating properties. Wet cotton can wick heat from your body 25 times faster than if it’s dry.

Since I’ve spent considerable time from the Deep South, the most popular summer kit is a medium-weight, white, 100 % cotton Navy surplus shirt. The shirt has a collar which can be opened up to shade my neck, and pockets with flaps and buttons. Cotton also offers a fair volume of UV protection.

On really hot days inside a canoe, a cotton shirt may be soaked with water, and worn for cooling you down. Over a desert hike, help prevent heat stroke simply by using a few ounces of water to wet the shirt down. (Water comes everywhere you look, including that algae-edged stock tank. The evaporation ‘s what cools you!)

The same properties that will make cotton ideal for hot weather turn it into a killer in rain, snow and cold.

Typical urban casual garb may perhaps be all cotton: sweat-socks, Hanes or Fruit with the Loom underwear, jeans, tee shirt, flannel shirt and sweatshirt. This outfit may help you stay warm in town, but don’t wear it to the back country! As soon as the cotton gets wet, you could result in trouble.

You shouldn’t be mislead from the looks and camouflage patterns of Completely cotton hunting clothes. These garments my be what exactly you’ll need for any hot, September dove hunt in Mississippi, nonetheless they become cold and clammy when damp or wet, much like anything else made from cotton.

* Polypropylene: This fabric doesn’t absorb water, so it’s a hydrophobic. It is then a fantastic lower layer, mainly because it wicks moisture from the body. The bad news is always that polypropylene melts, so a spark from the campfire may melt holes with your clothing.

* Wool: Where I live in Central Oregon, wool will be the standard for few months of the year. A good pair of wool pants and wool socks are the first apparel we recommend to new Boy Scouts inside our troop. For your winter scout excursions, any kind cotton garments are strongly discouraged. Jeans are banned.

Wool absorbs moisture, but stays warmer than many other fabrics. Wool is also inherently flame retardant.

* Polyester: This can be essentially fabric produced from plastic, and good things. The pad has good insulation and wind-stopping value, and is converted to many different thicknesses.

* Nylon: The fabric is pretty tough and can be applied to your surface. It does not absorb much moisture, and just what does evaporates quickly. It’s best utilized as some sort of windbreaker, a clothing from being compromised with the wind.

* Down: This material is not a fabric, but alternatively, fluffy feathers stuffed in a very garment or sleeping bag. When dry, down is one of the most popular insulated materials.

On the other hand don’t use a down sleeping bag, and would hesitate wearing a down vest to the back country as a result of potential moisture problems. When wet, down becomes hydrophilic, and loses the majority of its insulated value. It may be worse than cotton in terms of sucking heat out of your body.

In addition, a down sleeping bag or garment is actually impossible to normally dry out inside the back country, in spite of a roaring campfire.

Leon Pantenburg is really a wilderness enthusiast, and claim to be a “survival expert” or expertise being a survivalist. Leon teaches wise practice wilderness survival ways to the average joe so that you can avert potential disasters.

A paper man and journalist for several decades, Leon covered search and rescue, sheriff’s departments, floods, forest fires and other natural disasters and outdoor emergencies. He learned many individuals died unnecessarily or escaped miraculously when simple, wise practice may have changed the outcome.