In this uber fashion conscious age, outdoor clothing is no longer simply functional. It’s a fashion statement.
Being seen in the right kit is as important as whether it keeps the rain out or wicks away the sweat worked up on a steady climb up some unpronounceable tor.
We all know this.
Aspiration and cool is where it’s at especially and perhaps ironically, in the great outdoors where only your mates and a passing jackdaw will see you.
The key of course is the peer group. How you dress for snowboarding or off road trail running is a signifier of where you want to be both literally (up a hill) and in your dreams (top notch athlete), and friends, neighbours or others in the same pursuit weigh you up by the cut of your jib.
This applies across the board from youth to silver ramblers, who need to be seen in the right clothing because nowadays the best of the outdoor equipment is also stylish, truly functional and way beyond the parkas and wellies we wore to go for a walk in the woods.
This is where video scores in showing how the coolest dress for day out in the mountains. Jack Wolfskin has it down to a fine art. Its videos ooze aspiration, adventure, can-do fun with friends.
And if you think cool clothes, shoes, boots and accessories don’t matter, I advise a session in the gym.
I still wear a brightly coloured old vest with shorts and get regular glances of sympathy mixed with outright astonishment from the rest dressed in the best knee length Lycra and tight toned down tanks.