Wintertime rides can be fun, but staying warm isn't always easy. Feeling the cool, crisp air on your face is always nice, but as the temperatures steadily drop (especially in those colder regions of the country) staying warm can be a bit of a challenge when riding your horse. Here are 7 ways to stay warm in the saddle this winter.
1. Start With a Breathable Layer
When you’re getting dressed to go riding, make sure that your base layer consists of a breathable material. You want your base layer to help wick sweat away from your body so that you don’t get chilled, but it should also have some insulating properties to help keep you warm.
2. Wear Multiple Layers
Layering up can help to keep you warm during the coldest winter weather. When you’re wearing multiple layers, you can easily take the top layer off as you warm up during your ride. Make sure that you take a layer off before you start to sweat; it’s hard to stay warm once you’ve gotten wet.
3. Use a Waterproof Outer Layer
When choosing your layers, make sure that your outer layer is waterproof and windproof. This outer layer will keep you protected during rides outside. If you get wet, it’s hard to stay warm, so opt for a quality coat which gives you optimum waterproof protection.
4. Wear Winter Breeches
Make sure that you’re wearing winter breeches or winter riding jeans; these clothes often have a fleece or insulating inner layer to give you extra warmth. Wearing more than one or two layers on your legs when riding can get bulky, so make sure that the breeches you choose are intended for wintertime use.
5. Wear Warm Socks
Thin boot socks will leave your toes cold during winter rides. Instead, opt for insulated socks. It may be wise to buy winter riding boots which are a size larger than the boots you normally wear; this can allow for you to wear warm socks without your feet being too tight in the boots.
6. Choose Winter Riding Boots
Winter riding boots can make a big difference in keeping your feet warm. Look for a pair of boots which is well insulated, yet still flexible enough so that you’re comfortable wearing them while in the saddle. Make sure that the boots are also waterproof, since you’ll probably be walking through snow and mud before and after your ride.
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7. Use Hand and Foot Warmers
To truly warm up your ride, keep some disposable hand and foot warmers in your tack box. Slip a pair of the warmers into your boots and gloves to stay extra warm on super cold days.