How To Layer For The City

You’ve perfected your layering system for the hills, but what about when you swap your 40L rucksack and walking boots for a more urban adventure? The layering concept is just as important on flat ground as it is in the hills – it just takes a little bit of expert knowledge to make it work. Luckily for you, that’s where we come in. Here’s what to look out for to stay warm, dry and comfortable in the city. 

Base layer

Layering up for urban adventures doesn’t require a lot of the technical features you need for the mountains, and that means comfort can come first. Whilst it may be tempting to go for cotton next to skin for softness and warmth, you could quickly end up feeling damp if you’re moving fast or the weather takes a turn for the better. We recommend merino wool base layers for the perfect balance between warmth and moisture control for all-day comfort that can be layered under a technical mid-layer or something a little more casual – or worn alone in the summer. 


Like in the hills, your mid-layer is where your warmth comes from, so choose wisely. There are plenty of technical mid-layers which look understated enough to wear day-to-day, but still pack a punch when it comes to insulating performance. Go for a full-zip fleece for warmer days, and when it’s chillier, an insulated jacket looks as at home in the city as it does on the mountains – we recommend a synthetic insulated jacket for performance in wet or dry conditions.

Outer layer

Your outer layer for urban adventures doesn’t need to be as durable as the one you take into the hills – here, it’s all about striking the balance between performance and packability. A packable waterproof shell is the best option here – it packs down small so can live in your pack until you need it, and will be breathable enough to let moisture out as well as preventing it from getting in. An integrated stuff sack is a great feature to look out for.

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