Last weekend’s hike officially marked the end of the hiking season for me, specifically fall hiking season. A few updates: I am headed to New York this Thursday night to get to New York bright and early Friday. I will be there until Monday! Next weekend, I will be driving to Pacific City, Oregon, to shoot some content for Headlands Coastal Lodge & Spa. They have kindly offered me two nights there for the weekend. And the weekend after that, I will be down in Orange County for a wedding. I’m sure I will spend a significant amount of time in LA as well. So excited and thrilled to finally have some time off work. And those are the reasons why I wouldn’t be able to do any hikes, at least in Washington anymore. November weather might be wet and unpredictable, especially up the mountains.

This past year of living in Seattle, the Pacific Northwest (PNW), I’ve become a huge outdoorsy person. I’m lucky that I live just about 2 to 3-hour drive to so many amazing hiking trails and parks. We get mountains, beaches, sun, rain, and even snow, and basically, there is always something to do every day and every season. I’m incredibly grateful for the life that I’m living now, and I want you to know that this life is all about how you make it. If you’re not happy about something, change it. If you want to do something, just do it. Life is short, so make it worthwhile.

Enough updates, I’m going to jump right into the main topic of today’s blog post. It really is because I have way too many hiking photos and outdoor dressing tips I’ve picked up along the way since I’ve done so many hiking trips in the past year. In addition, you guys seem to really like my nature posts on Instagram, and I receive DMs asking about it all the time. So let’s get into it, shall we?!

It is worth it to invest in quality outdoorsy gears!!! It seems like I say this all the time, but when it comes to outdoor activities, don’t joke around. You need to wear things that fit and that you feel comfortable in. In the summer, wear clothes that are made from good fabrics that allow ventilation and sweat proof (so you won’t look like a sweaty cat!). And in the winter, you don’t want to wear a huge puffy parka jacket and hike with it up the mountains either.

Shoes

Nike Air Pesto. You will see me wear these continuously throughout this post since these are the only good comfortable shoes I wear on hikes! These are incredibly well-cushioned and look so cute worn around the city and on trails. They look kinda stretched out at this point since I’ve worn them with thick socks and jump around in them all the time. I did not intend to buy these to hike, but they ended up serving me so well. I know I need to get myself a pair of legit hiking boots, and I am actually waiting on the winter sale for those. I just wish that hiking boots were more affordable and cute.

Jackets

Marmont block tech jacket: In general, it is good to start with a basic rain and/or windproof jacket that is made from materials that actually can block out the rain and the wind. I bought this Marmot rain windproof jacket for $150 at REI last spring since it was on sale. Its original price was around $300, quite pricey, so it is always good to check REI’s sale section. This one is in heavy duty with huge side pockets that fit a water bottle in each and ventilation zippers. It is size XS and fit me very nicely. Again, you don’t have to go out and buy the exact same one that I have, but please do consider to invest in good outerwears, especially things that protect you from the unexpected weather conditions.

Nike running jacket. I got this one for $100 at the same time when I got my Nike Pesto (the only shoes I wear on hikes in the past year that I will talk more about later!). This one is so thin, lightweight, and easy to pack along in the backpack at any times. It is good for wet and windy spring and summer days. I layered a sweater underneath on slightly colder days and would always pack it with me since it is to thin. I love the decorated silver dots along the sleeves and the cool city vibe that it gives off every time I wear it.

Cotopaxi wind jacket. This is the Teca windbreaker jacket. It is unisex, so I got a matching jacket (different color combo) for my boyfriend. Mine is in the color Blue crush with yellow pipings and blue/green/bone color combo, and my boyfriend’s is in Jazzy with the green/yellow/blue/gray color combo. I love the llama logo and all of these windbreaker color combos. This one comes in a huge front pocket with tons of smaller compartments/smaller pockets inside. It’s definitely colorful and fun to wear. Oh, and make sure to sign up for their emails for 15% off your first order.

Uniqlo zip hoodie. This green one is on sale for $15 at Uniqlo, so I think you should get it asap! I got mine out of a whim and didn’t really dig it at first. But it really came in handy the past summer hiking season for me. It’s really durable (talking about the stitching here!) and comfortable to wear. Definitely check out Uniqlo for affordable tech stuff. It is not the most luxurious looking thing, but I like many of their stuff. Stay tuned for a long dedicated blog post about Uniqlo and I will show you what I love and buy from them. 

Sport Bras

Lulu Lemon crop bra. This crop bra is another original priced item that I just closed my eyes and had to buy it. It is still on sale, so that means it’s worth it since I got it two years ago. Lulu Lemon really make great stuff. I love this bra and its crisscross back detailing. It is really comfortable and easy to wear.

Lulu Lemon leggings. I own two black pairs, one is just basic no fancy seams or cut but extremely stretchy (the Align pants full length 28”) and one is made from a scuba-like material which sucks me in all the right places (Fast & Free 7/8 Tight II Nulux 25″). I love them both in their own rights. You can’t really tell the differences in photos nor can I describe them well enough, You really should go in the store and try on a few pairs, and I’m sure you will have your favorite. Don’t hesitate to invest in anything Lulu Lemon. They make amazing quality stuff.

Workout Sets

Outdoor Voices sets. I don’t think I need to talk much more about my love for Outdoor Voices as a brand. I love their workout sets from the design, the color combo, and the fit and feel of their fabrics. I’d like to own everything eventually, so I’m slowing buying a few things here and there. They do sale occasionally, and I’m waiting for their Black Friday deal and would stock up on more styles and colors. Below are a few things I own, and there are pros and cons along with each style, but overall OV is my absolute favorite brand when it comes to working sets.

7/8 Spring Leggings & the matching Tri-tone Slashback Crop Top: I got these both in size XS. I bought the leggings (my first ever OV item) for 30% off last year’s Black Friday sale and the crop bra later on. The fabrics on these are quite thick, and they definitely took me some time to adjust the feeling that it felt tight on. I wouldn’t like the bra or leggings like these to fall lose on me during the day, so I think these XS sizes fit my body best. Compared to my two Lulu Lemon leggings that I own, these are on the snuggly tight side for sure. The tri-color combo is OV’s absolutely famous and recognizable, and I love them!

The TechSweat shorts and TechSweat crop top: These were the seasonal colors (salmon pink), and they are sold out online. I got these on sale, and unfortunately, these are my least worn OV items. I think it’s because the bra top which I got in size S this time is really loose on me. I should have gone for the XS instead. It’s doubled lined, so it looks and feels bulky on. The shorts are a little too short, and they have definitely caught attention when I stop by Costco that day to grab some quick groceries and gas before the hike. However, I love the TechSweat range since its fabric is so stretchy and feels incredibly cool on, perfect for the summer time.

OV Athena crop top. This one is OV’s best selling crop top for a reason. I love its higher neckline and how it doesn’t squeeze down my boobs since the side seams perfectly contour my boobs. and somehow it looks so flattering on me. I want to get more colors for sure!

Sandals

Luna Oso 2.0 sandals. I’ve done a dedicated blog post featuring these Oso 2.0 before, so check it out, here! I wore these pretty much all summer long and brought them on a few short hikes before. I know pros run in these, so they must be legit. I always make sure I bring these along and have them in the car to change out quickly into. They’re durable and dry very fast! I love my sandals and Luna as a brand. Highly recommend!!!

Accessories

Wool Socks. These really make a huge difference in my footwear experience, especially help when hiking on rocks and unexpectedly bumpy and dangerous terrains. I like the wool ones and those that cover my ankles entirely so that I can have an option of wearing them higher or lower. It’s weird but as long as my ankles are protected on hikes, I’m good.

Hats. When in doubt, just wear a hat. I love the cobalt blue one from Outdoor Voices with the words ‘doing things’ embroidered in white. I’ve recently bought a purple Patagonia one, and I’ve gotten so many compliments on the hike.

Sweaters & Tshirts

Long-sleeved Ts and sweaters. I’d much prefer the crop version when it comes to sweaters on hikes since I get quite hot after awhile. Cropped things are easier to take out and don’t block the air down there. Brandy Melville has lots of affordable options for cotton Tshirts and fleeced sweaters. Uniqlo is also another great shop that you should check out! And the pink crop sweater below is from their Uniqlo U range that I’m absolutely obsessed with. I’m saving towards the new OV crop sweaters and a few Patagonia ones.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this lengthy post! Have a fantastic week and I will catch up with you very soon!

Read my other hiking-related blog posts Hike Lake Colchuck, 5 Easy Day Hikes with Vast Views

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All photos by Toan Chu, at Toan Chu Photography