21 Nov What to Wear Horseback Riding: Winter Edition
Not sure what to wear winter horseback riding? Mountain Creek has all the clothing tips and tricks to make you comfortable in the cold and have a great ride. We’ll start at the head and move our way down!
Up Top! Helmets vs. Hats
If you’ve been to one of our locations before, you know that we offer helmets for riders. You might say, “But they have holes in them… that’s not suitable for winter”. Correct -They do indeed have air vents in them! However, if you ask anyone who’s a skier, they will tell you those little vents don’t let out much heat. So, should you wear a hat or a helmet? It’s up to you, but a helmet will keep you warm just as well as a cap, except for the ears. Make sure to bring some ear muffs if you opt-in for the helmet!
The Upper Body
You’ve got your thermal layer, your long sleeve shirt, your sweater, and your hoodie. You’re all set, right? Not quite, but not for the reasons you think! The cold is one thing, but the wind is what will get you on a horseback ride. Your original outfit won’t protect you against that. And if the snow falls on you and you get wet, it can become dangerous! So regardless of what you wear as a base layer, make sure to bring a high quality wind-proof jacket that is water resistant if you want to be warm.
(P.S., helmets protect from wind, your hat won’t).
The Lower Half
So you’re all bundled up like your mother dressed you for a walk to school. Unfortunately, all that extra material on your legs could lead to one uncomfortable ride! Better to dress in some thin layers. We recommend if you run cold to wear two pairs of thermals and your pants, the air pockets between the fabric will keep you warm. Remember again: wind-proof is cold proof!
Winter Riding Boots
In general, the main thing in winter is to wear WATERPROOF footwear. “But I’m on a horse! My feet won’t be wet!” Correct… except for the time spent walking in the parking lot and out to your horse. And if you go into the office between getting out of your car and riding your horse, then any accumulated snow is going to melt. Then it will freeze again when you go outside. A pair of fuzzy socks and some rainboots will work just fine. Please remember though, if your boots are too wide at the toe, your feet won’t fit in the stirrups, and you’ll have to change your shoes before you go on your ride.
While probably majestic looking, leave the long scarves at home, as they can get caught on everything. Better to wear a neck gator (little tube-like piece of fabric) to cover up that cold spot right above your coat. As for gloves, you’ll need dexterity to hold onto the reigns and saddle, so no gloves that are too chunky and we advise against mittens.
Outside that, double gloves with a fingerless pair underneath is a good idea…. how else will you take photos with your phone?! Finally, sunglasses: that snow can be real bright!
Though the rides are only 45 minutes or an hour long, that can seem like forever if you’re freezing! Follow the tips above, and you can enjoy all nature has to offer in the winter atop a horse in maximum comfort.