When I find an outdoor clothing brand, I often stick with that brand for years. I have separate brands for different gear. You will never find me clothed head to toe from the one company. I have found that different brands are really good for different clothes and shoes. The following is my favorite brands for outdoor gear that will last at a price I can stand.
Premium Outdoor Clothing Brands
Sometimes with the following brands, I wonder if they are still in outdoor clothing manufacturing or if they are now fashion brands.
- Location: Canada
- Popular Products: Gamma LT Jacket
- What I like: the attention to detail and fit is unmatched, brilliant winter jackets
- What I don’t like: it is expensive, often the fit is too slim
Arc’teryx is a Canadian outdoor clothing brand founded three decades ago in Vancouver, British Columbia. This world-famous brand got its name after the Archaeopteryx, a bird-like dinosaur from the Late Jurassic period.
In my opinion, the name of this company is actually quite fitting. After all, Arc’teryx is a brand that is constantly evolving. It’s one of the most innovative corporations of this type and one whose focus is to always stay on the cutting edge of things.
Arc’teryx specializes in apparel for hiking, trail running, snowboarding, skiing, trekking, and mountaineering. It offers a variety of clothing, including skirts, dresses, fleeces, shirts, sweatshirts, jackets, shorts, pants, coats, shoes, boots, packs, and many accessories for the activities mentioned above. It offers products for all seasons and both sexes.
A lot of people consider Arc’teryx jackets and gear to be the best when it comes to technical application, as well as for general outdoor use. The brand’s meticulous attention to detail and the fact that it uses only the best materials and technologies are precisely why it is among the leading companies in the outdoor clothing industry.
When it comes to keeping folks warm when they’re outside, Canada Goose is the name in the game. Founded all the way back in the 1950s in Toronto, Canada, this company is now well-known for its premium outerwear for men, women, and kids.
The brand’s knitwear, jackets, and coats are more than capable of keeping people warm in freezing temperatures. In addition to the apparel mentioned above, Canada Goose also designs, manufactures, and sells scarves, gloves, hats, and all sorts of accessories for backcountry escapades.
Canada Goose offers apparel for people of all sizes – from newborns to XL adults – and most of their clothes are hand-stitched, which means that they won’t wear out that easily no matter how much and where you wear them.
CG’s knitwear, jackets, and coats are ideal for most cold-weather sports, including snowboarding, snowmobiling, skiing, and mountaineering. And since a lot of their garments feature goose feather down, they’re not only very warm but also lightweight and flexible.
Although an Italian brand, with headquarters in Milan, Moncler was established in France, all the way back in 1952. Its founders were André Vincent and René Ramillon, who were well-versed in the art of creating down-filled coats capable of keeping folks comfortable and warm while they’re exploring Europe’s most extensive mountain range – the Alps.
Nowadays, Moncler keeps growing and adapting to the current trends, which is precisely why it’s still one of the most well-known names in the outdoor clothing industry. The company has lines for kids, women, and men, and their garments can be obtained in all sizes and shapes.
What is more, Moncler is famous for its neverending experimentation with all kinds of patterns and colors on its apparel, and often uses high art as an inspiration. I think that it’s pretty safe to say that the company seeks to make its clothes as innovative as possible, trying to become a trendsetter like Patagonia.
All in all, Moncler is a phenomenal option for folks who don’t only want to be warm while snowboarding or skiing but also to look good while engaging in these activities. Most of their apparel works great when it comes to general outdoor use and snow-related activities, but it’s not the best choice out there for cold-weather trekkers.
If you are interested in Patagonia, check out my post on the Best Patagonia Winter Jackets.
Popular Outdoor Clothing Brands
The North Face
- Location: California
- Popular Products: all their hiking shoes, T-Shirts, great 3-in-1 jackets
- What I like:
- What I don’t like:
The North Face is probably the most internationally known of all the outdoor clothing brands listed in this article. Founded in California in the 1960s, this company is now a phenomenon whose garments are worn by the likes of Charlize Theron, Sandra Bullock, Edward Norton, Drake, and other famous people. They have the money to pay for high-profile branding!
The cool and casual appeal of this brand’s jackets undoubtedly speaks to a very wide audience. However, the North Face garments are also highly functional – whether you’re going trail running, camping, trekking, or climbing, the company has a unique solution for your favorite activity.
The North Face designs, manufactures and sells jackets, coats, t-shirts, sweatshirts, shorts, pants, skirts, dresses, tank tops, sports bras, boots, shoes, as well as all kinds of different accessories. The brand’s clothing options are available for kids, women, and men.
Besides clothes, the company is well-known for its quality backpacks as well as tents and other kinds of camping gear. The North Face offers enormous flexibility and variety, which is precisely what turns them into one of the best choices out there when it comes to outdoor apparel.
If you are interested in North Face products, check out my post on the Best North Face Rain Jackets.
Patagonia is well-known for its image of a “brand that sets the new definition of cool”. Founded in 1973 in California, this company certainly knows how to design and sell a stunning product. It has been going strong for almost five decades and is still considered to be the best of the best by many outdoorsmen all over the world.
Most of the brand’s collection focuses on various sporting equipment that can be used in a myriad of different scenarios. However, those looking for clothes made with specific activities in mind will be pleased to find that Patagonia offers garments for mountain biking, fly fishing, climbing, trail running, skiing, surfing, and snowboarding.
As far as I’m concerned, it cannot be overstated how insanely huge the amount of Patagonia’s offerings is. This just might be the most diverse out of all outdoor clothing brands – they have socks, base layers, hats, caps, underwear, bras, waders, swimwear, skirts, wetsuits, dresses, jeans, t-shirts, shorts, sweaters, hoodies, sweatshirts, fleeces, vests, and, of course, jackets.
Another thing worth mentioning about this company is that it spends a lot of money and time on sustainable manufacturing practices and various environmental projects. Patagonia is well-known for the fact that it uses responsibly sourced down and a variety of recycled materials in its garments.
Founded in 1981 by a guy called Ron Gregg, this Seattle-based brand takes the “Research” part of its name quite seriously. In other words, this is one of those companies that makes genuinely innovative pieces of apparel. Furthermore, it’s a brand with a truly massive range of products – if you would want to, you would be able to easily buy everything you need for a backcountry adventure at an Outdoor Research store.
The company has over 40 different lines of products for both sexes. It produces clothes such as coats, jackets, skirts, dresses, hoodies, sweatshirts, shirts, pants, shorts, and even hats. What is more, each of Outdoor Research’s products doesn’t benefit the buyer by simply clothing them.
What does that mean? It means that a lot of their garments come equipped with some genuinely useful quality of life features. Some of these benefits include Gore-Tex, water protection, and UV protection. In other words, this is a brand that keeps its customers coming back by trying new and innovative things.
Each of their garments is backed by a lifetime guarantee. If there’s an issue with your Outdoor Research piece of apparel, the company will have it replaced. All in all, this brand is an excellent choice for folks who are all about experimental advances in the outdoor clothing industry.
Many people find Outdoor Research to be similar to Arc’teryx, so I suggest checking out my Outdoor Research vs Arc’teryx comparison as well.
Next up on my list is Marmot, a company that was founded by three friends in 1974. Back then, the brand’s founders studied together in Alaska, and decided to form a sort of a club called “the Marmot Club”. If you’ve ever been to Alaska, you know how cold that place is, so it’s no wonder that it makes people get creative when it comes to staying cozy and warm.
Once their studies were over, the three guys went back home and decided to create a solution to the freezing cold. As you can already guess, the solution’s name was Marmot, a brand that still exists today, almost half a century later.
Nowadays, the company offers coats, jackets, bottoms, tops, as well as all kinds of accessories for kids, women, and men. To put it simply, Marmot offers solutions to all those who don’t want to have their outdoor adventures ruined by bad weather.
The brand has products for activities such as ice climbing, alpine climbing, bouldering, camping, and trekking. A lot of their garments, including the well-known PreCip Eco jacket, are made to keep their wearers dry and warm in all weather conditions.
Back in the early 1980s, a guy called Ulrich Dausien founded a brand new outdoor clothing company – Jack Wolfskin – in Frankfurt, Germany. His vision behind this entire idea was to create garments that will make people who explore the outdoors feel just as comfortable as they feel when they’re relaxing in their homes.
Mr. Dausien managed to achieve this by designing, producing, and selling clothes that feel genuinely comfortable, no matter where and when they’re worn. Jack Wolfskin’s line of products includes things like pants, tops, jackets, boots, shoes, and various accessories.
What is more, a lot of these garments come with benefits like mosquito protection or UV protection, and many of them are made out of recycled materials. It should also be mentioned that Jack Wolfskin also manufactures backpacks, sleeping bags, and tents.
While you certainly won’t feel like wearing wolf skin while using one of this company’s jackets, you will feel comfortable, cozy, and warm. Even though this brand’s garments aren’t exactly affordable, each of them is undoubtedly a worthwhile investment.
Here we have a Scottish outdoor clothing brand, which got its name after its founder – Rab Carrington, a climber and a mountaineer. Unlike some of the brands described on this list, this one was actually created by and for mountain lovers.
Most of the products made by Rab are designed for trekking, climbing, scaling, and general use in brutal, difficult conditions and at high altitudes. The company’s lineup of garments includes shirts, pants, base layers, mid-layers, fleeces, softshells, hoodies, jackets, coats, caps, hats, and belts. Rab also manufactures sleeping bags and general outdoor equipment.
Just like most of the other brands listed in this article, Rab designs clothes for women and men alike. As I’ve already said, the brand’s goal is to allow climbers to engage in their favorite activity in the most comfortable way possible.
While it’s true that most of Rab’s clothes are mountaineering-specific, a lot of them are also generalized and can be used in a variety of scenarios. All in all, this brand is a wonderful option for folks looking to get into climbing but don’t exactly know where to start.
Founded in Newcastle upon Tyne in 1966, Berghaus is one of the most renowned British outdoor clothing brands. Both of the guys who founded the company – Gordon Davison and Peter Lockey – were mountaineers and climbers.
Even though Berghaus used to design, manufacture, and sell only rucksacks, the brand now also offers all kinds of different clothes and outdoor gear. Some of these include shoes, boots, coats, jackets, shorts, pants, and long-sleeved shirts.
One particularly interesting thing about Berghaus is that this brand takes environmentalism quite seriously – the company is all about sustainable manufacturing. For example, they get a vast majority of their polyester from recycled plastic, which doesn’t affect the quality of their clothes in any way but undoubtedly helps the environment.
All in all, this brand is a good mid-priced option for all eco-conscious outdoorsmen looking for a diverse selection of outerwear. The performance of their products is thoroughly impressive even though they’re available at genuinely affordable prices.
An outdoor clothing brand based in the United Kingdom, Craghoppers is a company that specializes in protective apparel, like insect-proof and sun-proof clothes. Furthermore, many of their garments are made out of recycled materials, which is always a big plus in my book.
Founded all the way back in 1965 in Batley, the brand has always been focused on becoming a leader in the industry of quality outdoor apparel. Besides protective garments, which I have mentioned above, Craghoppers also has plenty of excellent options for everyday outdoor wear. They also manufacture trekking poles, luggage bags, rucksacks, and standard backpacks.
Just like most companies of this type, Craghoppers offers clothes for men, women, and kids, although most of their apparel is adult-oriented. Besides a lifetime warranty, the brand also offers something called a price match – those who find Craghoppers clothes that are cheaper than the ones offered on their website will then have that price matched by the brand itself.
The last thing worth pointing out here is that most people know about Craghoppers because of the brand’s Kiwi line of products, which includes everything from jackets to trousers to backpacks. Here’s a short overview of one of the most popular jackets from the same range:
Ferrino is one of the oldest outdoor clothing brands on my list – it was established all the way back in 1870 by Cesare Ferrino (hence the company’s name). This Italian-based brand started its journey by making tents, snowshoes, and all kinds of accessories.
Ferrino grew into one of Italy’s largest and most well-known outerwear manufacturers as the years went by. Its voyage to success was helped mainly by the fact that Cesare was one of Italy’s very first creators to use water-resistant fabrics while designing and manufacturing apparel and accessories.
This kind of innovation led to the brand’s fame which is still present today. No matter the conditions or climate, Ferrino creates outstanding products that successfully suit the needs of most of its customers. While they’re still quite well-known for snowshoes and tents, which I have mentioned above, the company keeps creating more approachable – and better – outerwear with each passing year.
Ferrino has an extraordinary lineup of coats, jackets, pants, and shirts. From trekking to skiing and climbing to trail running, Ferrino focuses on creating premium-quality garments for all those who are in love with the Great Outdoors.
Just like Rab, Karrimor is a well-known (and beloved) UK-based brand. The company was established in 1946 in Lancashire, just after the Second World War, and it slowly grew into an internationally renowned brand we all know and love today.
While it’s true that Karrimor is mostly known for its high-quality trekking boots and shoes, the brand also creates some of the market’s best rucksacks and lightweight jackets. Rather than manufacturing multifunctional products, the company focuses on making pieces of apparel that are uniquely qualified for specific purposes.
It goes without saying, but that is precisely what ensures that folks who decide to buy a Karrimor product get one that’s perfectly suited for their needs. The primary niches that this brand seeks to fill include camping, trekking, and trail running.
From there, Karrimor creates a whole range of products that suit a camper, a trekker, and a trail runner. And just like most of the other companies on my list, they also have offerings for both sexes. I consider this brand an ideal choice for all those looking to upgrade their clothes (or footwear) to their specific needs.
Based in Brisbane, Australia, Mountain Designs was established in 1975. Its founder was Rick White, who was well-known in his home country due to his discoveries of various rock-climbing destinations all across Australia.
Back in the 1970s, finding adequate climbing gear in Australian shops was all but easy, so Rick decided to establish a brand of his own and use it to import quality mountaineering equipment from the US. As the years went by, the company grew and started manufacturing its own branded products.
Currently, Mountain Designs has lines of boots, shoes, t-shirts, vests, coats, jackets, thermals, pants, and accessories for climbers, trekkers, and all those in love with nature. While it’s true that many of the brand’s clothes are designed for rough terrain, many of them sport that casual, urbanite appeal too.
The company offers a vast selection of garments for both sexes and quality thermals for kids. Moreover, the brand is well-known for its fantastic footwear – Mountain Design boots and shoes are an excellent option for long adventures in the backcountry. This brand is, in my opinion, a great choice if you’re looking for genuinely well-made apparel and footwear for your backcountry expeditions.
At the tail end of the 19th century, a new kind of outerwear was born. Founded by Clinton C. Filson (hence the name), the Filson Company is one of America’s oldest corporations of this type and a truly renowned name in the outdoor clothing world. It was originally founded to meet the needs of folks who, traveling to Klondike, were passing through Seattle, where Filson was established.
The company manufactures products that are not only backed by a lifetime guarantee but can also be repaired at Filson repair shops. On the clothing tags of its garments, the brand claims to be the complete outfitter of prospectors, miners, and lumberjacks. While it’s true that most people buying Filson clothes do not have these occupations, it’s certainly a great thing to be able to buy a jacket that is genuinely tough and durable.
Much of Filson’s branding is focused on activities such as trekking, horseback riding, and, of course, outdoor work. The brand offers various types of apparel, including pants, chaps, overalls, vests, sweaters, button-up work shirts, hoodies, fleeces, rainwear, down jackets, synthetic jackets, and coats.
All in all, Filson’s garments are great for outdoor enthusiasts who want their outfits to be tough and capable of withstanding all kinds of wear and tear. When it comes to sheer durability, this is definitely one of the better brands out there.
As you can already guess, this is a Scandinavian outdoor clothing brand – Swedish, to be more precise – and, as a European outerwear manufacturer, it must be great. Or is that just a stereotype? In this case, it certainly isn’t. Haglöfs is considered one of the best brands in the business.
The company was founded more than a century ago, in 1914, by Wiktor Haglöf and has since risen to become one of the planet’s largest corporations of this type. It is active in 25 markets worldwide and is one of those few brands genuinely focused on sustainable manufacturing practices.
With its products being based around trail running, mountaineering, and hiking, Haglöfs has something for all types of outdoor enthusiasts. In addition to high-quality clothes, the brand also designs backpacks, sleeping bags, and all kinds of accessories related to the activities mentioned above.
One exceptionally good thing about Haglöfs is its “price-match guarantee” policy. Potential buyers who find Haglöfs products sold at lower prices will then have those same prices matched by the brand itself. Pretty convenient, wouldn’t you say?
Lower Price Outdoor Clothing Brands
This is the category of outdoor gear where I spend most of my money. The outdoor hiking brands here are not low quality, though the designs are not at the same level as the brands in the two categories above. However, they make good quality gear that lasts.
REI (Recreational Equipment Inc.) is an American outdoor retail company that was founded in 1938 by Lloyd and Mary Anderson. The Andersons were outdoor enthusiasts who were frustrated by the lack of quality outdoor gear available at the time, so they decided to start their own company to meet the needs of fellow outdoor enthusiasts.
REI was initially a cooperative, meaning that it was owned and operated by its members. Customers could join the co-op by paying a one-time fee, and as members, they were entitled to discounts on gear and other benefits. This business model allowed REI to grow quickly, and by the 1950s, it had become a major player in the outdoor retail industry.
In the 1960s and 1970s, REI continued to expand, opening new stores and expanding its product line to include a wide range of outdoor gear and apparel. The company also began to focus on sustainability and environmental conservation, partnering with organizations such as The Nature Conservancy and The Wilderness Society.
Today, REI is a well-known and respected brand in the outdoor industry, with over 150 stores in 35 states and an online store that serves customers worldwide. The company is still owned by its members, and it continues to focus on providing high-quality gear and promoting outdoor activities and environmental conservation.
REI is a retailer that sells a wide range of outdoor gear, apparel, and accessories from various brands. Some of the categories of products that REI sells include:
- Footwear: REI carries a variety of footwear for different outdoor activities, including hiking boots, trail running shoes, sandals, and winter boots.
- Apparel: REI offers a range of apparel for outdoor activities, including jackets, shirts, pants, and base layers.
- Backpacking and camping: REI sells a variety of gear for backpacking and camping, including tents, sleeping bags, backpacks, and stoves.
- Biking: REI offers a range of gear for biking, including helmets, gloves, jerseys, and bike accessories.
- Climbing: REI sells climbing gear such as harnesses, carabiners, and helmets.
- Paddling: REI carries gear for paddling sports such as kayaking, canoeing, and stand-up paddleboarding, including boats, paddles, and personal flotation devices.
- Snow sports: REI sells gear for snow sports, such as skiing and snowboarding, including skis, snowboards, boots, and bindings.
- Travel: REI sells gear and accessories for travel, including luggage, packing organizers, and travel accessories.
In addition to these categories, REI also sells a variety of other outdoor gear and accessories, including hammocks, water bottles, headlamps, and GPS devices.
Merrell Outdoor Gear
Just because a brand is under this last category is not an indication of quality. I use and will continue to use Merrell’s gear. They make excellent hiking shoes at a sensible price.
Merrell is an American company specializing in outdoor gear, including footwear, apparel, and accessories. The company was founded in 1981 by Randy Merrell, a bootmaker based in Vernal, Utah. Merrell began by creating custom-made hiking boots for customers in the Rockies and eventually expanded to create a line of high-quality, performance-oriented outdoor gear.
In the 1980s, Merrell introduced its first mass-produced hiking boot, the Wilderness Boot. This boot was designed to be lightweight, durable, and comfortable, and it quickly gained popularity among hikers and outdoor enthusiasts. In the 1990s, the company expanded its product line to include a range of footwear for different activities, including running, walking, and casual wear.
In the 2000s, Merrell continued to innovate and expand its product line, introducing new technologies such as Gore-Tex and Vibram soles. The company also began to focus more on sustainability, using recycled materials and partnering with organizations that promote environmental conservation. Today, Merrell is a well-known and respected brand in the outdoor industry, offering a wide range of products for outdoor enthusiasts of all levels.
Merrill is a brand that is best known for its footwear. But they also manufacture a wide range of outdoor gear. Some of the products they offer include:
- Hiking boots and shoes: Merrill produces a variety of hiking boots for different terrain and activities. These boots are designed to be comfortable, durable, and supportive, and they are available in various styles and sizes.
- Trail running shoes: Merrill produces a range of trail running shoes designed for off-road trails. These shoes are typically lightweight and responsive and offer good traction and support for running over uneven terrain.
- Sandals: Merrill Outdoor Gear produces a range of sandals suitable for outdoor activities such as hiking, camping, and backpacking. These sandals are typically made with durable materials and are designed to be comfortable and supportive.
- Outdoor clothing: In addition to footwear, Merrill Outdoor Gear also produces a range of outdoor clothing, such as jackets, pants, and base layers. These products are designed to be functional, comfortable, durable, and suitable for various outdoor activities.
Certainly one of the most beloved brands in the United States, Columbia Sportswear has a long and rich history. It was established all the way back in the 1930s by Paul Lamfrom, in Portland, Oregon. Like most of the other companies on this list, Columbia Sportswear focuses on making functional but great-looking products for various activities.
A lot of Columbia’s garments are designed specifically for hunting, skiing, golf, trail running, fishing, and trekking. In other words, the brand has a solution for everyone, regardless of your or someone else’s outdoor interests.
The brand offers garments for all ages and body types, from kids to adults. An important thing to mention here is that the company also focuses on flexible clothes that can be used for more than just one activity. Their apparel often tends to be relatively affordable, too.
Some of Columbia’s offerings include dresses, skirts, vests, shoes, puffer coats, jackets, short and long-sleeved shirts, hiking pants, and all kinds of accessories. In my opinion, this brand is a fantastic choice for all those looking for relatively inexpensive and flexible clothes that can be used in a vast range of scenarios.
If you are interested in Columbia products, check out my Columbia Omni-Heat Jacket and Apparel Line review.
What are the Best Outdoor Clothing Brands?
I deliberately have not tied myself to pick only one brand as the best. If I had to pick only one brand, that would be The North Face. As an allrounder outdoor brand, they do a great job at just above a reasonable price.
My second choice is Marmot, as I like their merino wool socks, shoes, sandals, and boots.
I love hiking, backpacking, and camping. From the Camino de Santiago to the West Highland Way in Scotland or simply a great day hike on the weekend. Hiking refreshes me, my mind, and keeps my body reasonably fit. So far I have walked three Camino routes and many other long distance hikes in the UK, Canada, and around the rest of Europe. One of the best was my hike up Ben Nevis.
1 thought on “Best Outdoor Clothing Brands for Hiking”
Haven’t seen anyone hiking in Canada goose gear 😀
What about Mountain equipment, Montane gear ?