Winter Trail Running Gear: The Essentials

If you’re like most runners, you prefer the cooler months to lace up your running shoes and hit the trails. The fresh air, magnificent landscape, and solitude that only a winter run gives are just a few reasons many people like trail running. However, before embarking on your first winter trail run, it’s critical to ensure you’re equipped properly. This blog post will discuss every runner’s essentials in their arsenal when hitting the trails in cold weather.

Winter Trail Running Tips & Gear

It can be difficult to leave your cozy house and venture outside when chilly and windy weather. It can be even harder when it’s snowing or raining. But you don’t have to avoid it. You can prepare for it by wearing the right clothes and gear.

Ski mountaineering racing is a popular sport in the Alps. This popularity has led to better gear design for cold-weather performance. Ski mountaineering gear is designed to be light and efficient – perfect for athletes who race in this sport. This gear is also being used for trail running. The same brands creating innovative ski mountaineering gear also make great products for runners.

This innovation is not just for people who run on trails. People who do mountain climbing are also using this innovation. They are using it to go faster when they climb mountains. This is good news for consumers because they can buy really good products.


The temperature can change a lot in the winter. This is because of the wind, elevation, and sun’s shine on an area. You need to be prepared for this by wearing light layers of clothing. Make sure to bring a shell layer, too, so you stay warm when it’s cold outside. Remember that you might be feeling hot on the way up, but it could be very cold on the way down. So, you might want to take a different shirt with you for the trip back down.

It is critical to have a shirt with pockets when running in the cold. You can carry water flasks, a buff, and an ultralight shell in these pockets. This will help you stay warm and have everything you need while running.

When you’ve been climbing for a while, your base layer will be wet. Carry a dry layer to keep warm on the descent.

Start Cold

Plan ahead for how you will be feeling once you are warmed up. You will be cold at first, but it is better to stay comfortable than to keep stopping to adjust your clothing. You also do not want to overheat and get really cold later on.


The air is drier in the winter, and because of this, you can lose fluids without even realizing it. When running for a longer time, drink some water before feeling thirsty. This will help you stay ahead of dehydration. It’s best to carry soft flasks against your body when running.

Watch Those Fingers

Some people’s hands never get cold, but others freeze when their hands swing through the cold air. For most people, purchasing trail running gloves with a wind barrier is an excellent choice. The Dynafit Race Pro glove is good for most conditions. Still, the Black Diamond Stance glove is better because it is super light and insulated when cold outside. You just need to maintain it to ensure the best performance. Just like washing motorcycle gloves, running gloves also need regular cleaning to make it last longer.

Bring a Buff

The buff hat is an excellent complement to your trail running attire. Buffs can protect your neck, ears, and head from the cold weather. They can also be used as a face mask to breathe through in the most extreme weather conditions.

Bring a Light

Some people say that “winter is the time when it gets late early.” This means that it gets dark early in the evening. If you’re going for a run, take a small light with you if you decide to stay out longer than planned.


Your shoes are the most critical element of winter running equipment. They need to be waterproof and have a good grip. You should also get a bigger size to wear a thicker sock. Brands like Dynafit, Salomon, and Scarpa make perfect shoes for winter running.


There is more gear you need for winter. You will want gloves, a hat, and an extra layer. If you are outside for more than two hours, you will probably want a light backpack to carry a jacket or even a change of clothes. If you do a long uphill, it is important to change into something dry for the downhill. A backpack that is up to 12 liters in size should be enough.


It is not the time to work out as hard as possible in winter. You should enjoy doing things you don’t usually do in the warmer months. Most people should try to maintain their fitness or weight during winter. But it might also be a good time for mental recovery. If you push yourself all year, maybe take a break and just run for fun. Or run to be in nature. If it’s a sunny day and you see a nice bench, take the time to enjoy it.

You can learn more about various running gears, click here.

Frequently Asked Questions About Winter Trail Running Gear

What Should I Wear for Trail Running in Winter?

Thermal pants that wick away moisture or breathable, water-resistant tights. With a top thermal layer and a hard-shell running jacket. Thermal socks, mittens, hat/beanie for winter running, and neck gaiter. Consider layering a lightweight, breathable cap beneath your winter running hat/beanie to increase your warmth.

What Gear Do You Need To Run in Winter?

You will need to wear running pants, a long-sleeve shirt, and gloves when cold outside. Additionally, a helmet or headband may be worn to keep your hair out of your face.

Are Trail Runners Good for Winter?

Yes, trail running shoes are ideal for snowy conditions. Due to their intended use as trail runners feature an aggressive tread pattern that provides excellent traction on snowy paths and roads. So if you see fresh snow outside and want to go for a run, don’t let the wintry conditions stop you.

How Many Layers Should You Run in the Cold?

To run in cold weather, you need to dress in layers. The layers should be made of sweat-wicking material, so your sweat doesn’t make you cold. If it is below 30 degrees Fahrenheit, you will want to wear at least two layers. If it is colder than that, you might want to wear four layers.

How Cold Is Too Cold To Run in Shorts?

To run in the fall, you need to layer your clothes. The first decision you need to make is if you want shorts or crops. Most runners will find that they can wear shorts at 50 degrees if they have the right clothes on top.

What To Wear Running at 30 Degrees?

Wear a long-sleeve shirt, tights or thermal baselayer, and running pants to stay warm. You can also layer a pair of running pants over your tights. Then put on a fleece top and lightweight running jacket. Bring a cap and gloves.

Is It Safe To Run in the Cold?

It is generally okay to run while suffering from a light cold if the symptoms do not extend over the neck. However, it is critical to listen to your body and substitute a less rigorous exercise. Try jogging or fast walking if you’re not feeling up to your typical running routine.

What Do Runners Wear on Their Feet in Winter?

Don’t wear cotton socks when running. They will not absorb sweat, making your feet wet and more likely to get blisters. Instead, try wearing socks made of fabrics such as acrylic, CoolMax, or wool.

Can You Hike in the Snow in Trail Runners?

Boots are a good way to stay warm in the snow, but if you’re looking for something even warmer, try trail runners. It’s a good idea to start out in a safe place where you won’t get into too much trouble. Remember that boots alone won’t keep your feet from getting cold; they might help a little bit, but it really depends on the situation.

Are Trail Runners Good for Ice?

Trail shoes have large lugs on the soles designed to grip the trail. This also works well on snow and ice. Some shoes have metal spikes on the lugs for extra traction over snow and ice.

What Do I Need to Run a 10k Trail?

It is a good idea to carry some food and water with you if you are in an area where help might not get to you right away. This will help ensure that you are as prepared as possible if something happens. Additionally, it is critical to determine how much water, electrolytes, and food you require to bring the necessary materials.

Why Do Trail Runners Wear Long Socks?

People who run a lot often wear compression socks. They believe that these socks help reduce swelling and tiredness in the legs, prevent leg cramps, and help with recovery.