(Photo Credit: Kaya Lindsay

Recreating in Moab in the winter can be a bit of a wild ride—temperature wise. The mornings are frosty, with near single digit temps, the middle of the day can get warm, even verging on hot, and the evenings drop back down to just about freezing. 

Layering for this kind of weather can be tricky. Not enough layers means you’ll end up freezing, a dangerous prospect this time of year. While, too many layers can be cumbersome and difficult to manage. There’s a trick to layering properly when recreating in Moab in the winter. At Moab Gear Trader we have everything you need to stay warm, and keep cool while hiking, climbing, Nordic skiing and mountain biking this winter. 

When layering, you want to keep in mind three basic layers. A base layer, a mid layer, and an outer layer. 

The Perils of Over-dressing 

(Photo Credit: Daniel Bowman) 

Before we jump into layers, let’s talk about over-dressing. It seems obvious to most the risks of underdressing for a snowy adventure. Underdressing can lead to being too cold, hypothermia, and—in extreme cases—frostbite. While overdressing isn’t often as deadly, it can be a hindrance to your outdoor adventures in other ways. Most prominently, over dressing for the cold can cause you to sweat. Sounds obvious, but if you sweat too much and it cools, it can drop your body temperature significantly, which is always risky in winter sports. When layering, you want to make sure you’ve got the right amount of layers that allow you to vent heat when your cardio activity is at its highest. 

Base Layer

This is the layer closest to your skin, you want something that will help wick moisture off your skin to keep you from cooling down too much after you start sweating. Base layers are similar to long underwear. 

Mid Layer 

Your mid layer should keep heat close to the body. This is the layer doing most of the heavy lifting when you’re trying to stay warm. Examples of mid layers can be fleece pullovers, or puffy jackets. 

Outer Layer 

Your outer layer should be the item keeping you dry and shielded from the wind. Rain and snow are common in Moab in the winter and you’ll want to make sure you have a shell that will keep them off you. It is also important that this layer has plenty of vents, you also make moisture and want to be able to open some vents to cool yourself when you get too warm. 

What combination of layers is right for you? 

(Photo Credit: Kaya Lindsay

You won’t always use each one of these layers. Depending on your sport and the location, you might not want to bring an outer layer, or maybe you’re only going out in the middle of the day so you don’t want to bring a mid layer. 

From lightest layers to heaviest layers 

Activity in the Heat of the Day – Just a base layer, likely a polyester item that will keep moisture off your skin

Activity for Half the Day with some overlap into the colder temps  – A nice base layer, and a comfortable mid layer. Something that packs down so you can put it away when you heat up, but pull back out when the temps drop again. 

Activity for the full Day, going from cold morning to hot afternoon, to cold evening– A base layer, mid layer, and an outer shell would be ideal. Particularly if you’re going to be out in the wind, rain, or snow. 

Obviously, there is no hard and fast rule for layering, and you will have to be aware of your own personal comfort with temps, as well as the weather forecast for the day and the activity that you are going to do. 

(Photo Credit: Kaya Lindsay


Layers at Moab Gear Trader

(Photo Credit: Kaya Lindsay

Fortunately for you, we have layering experts at your fingertips! Our friendly staff are more than prepared to help you find base, mid, and outer layers for whatever winter sport you’re pursuing. We have a wide selection of new and used items, so you can have the best gear, for the best adventures, at the best price. 

Swing on by for a full run down on base, mid, and outer layers specific to each sport. We look forward to seeing you in our store very soon!