Mountaineering requires both a good physical preparation, combined with a good knowledge of the high mountains and technical training. The clothing you wear must be good enough to withstand the extreme conditions and not impact your comfort and performance.

Breathable and insulating mountaineering clothing

To resist the cold in mountaineering, several layers of clothing are necessary. On the upper body you need at least three layers and on the lower body at least two layers.

Choose thermal and breathable underwear because in the active phase they help you to evacuate perspiration and in the passive phase they prevent you from losing the heat produced by your body. It is therefore essential to choose your t-shirt and thermal tights carefully.

As for the second layer, the upper body must play an insulating role. A fleece jacket or down jacket is therefore ideal for mountaineering.

Choosing clothing that protects you effectively

Protective clothing is an essential part of mountaineering. Choose Hardshell rather than softshell.


Jackets and overpants designed in 3 layers are the most technical, robust and efficient for mountaineering. Their membrane is located between the outer fabric and the inner lining. Indeed, they resist abrasion, which is an essential feature when you move against the rock. In addition, they are waterproof to withstand all weather conditions.

For maximum protection, make sure that the
jacket has reinforcements in strategic places, that it has ventilation zips and that its hood is adjustable and compatible with the wearing of a helmet.

For the pantsthe knees must be preformed to allow better freedom of movement. The gaiters are also essential because they allow to close the pants on the shoe.

Protecting the body's extremities

Protecting the extremities of the body is not an option when mountaineering, as these parts of the body are the most exposed.


Gloves should be warm, protective and durable. Mountaineering gloves have a lining to keep you warm, the palms are reinforced with leather and they provide resistance to abrasion. I advise you to wear thin and warm gloves under your mountaineering gloves.

Nathanaël - Mountaineering product expert

About Nathanaël : "Sport is a big part of my life. I practice climbing, mountaineering, paragliding, trail and ski touring. A full day without enjoying the nature around me? Don't even get me started, it's inconceivable."

Protecting your head and especially your ears is also important. Hats are usually made of merino wool, synthetic or hybrid materials. Wearing an under-cap or balaclava under your mountaineering helmet is also key to avoid losing heat.

Finally, socks and shoes must be adapted to your activity. The shoes especially dedicated to mountaineering allow a good grip on the ground and must be chosen with care.


  • - Choose warm, breathable, light clothing, but especially resistant to abrasion.
  • - Your clothing completes your basic equipment (ice axe, crampons, helmet...) and allows you to evolve in the high mountains in the best conditions.
  • - In mountaineering nothing should be neglected, every detail is important