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Men's Cold weather Leggings

2020 Camino Guides

Isca-camigo

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Various ones.
I was wondering if any posters have experience of wearing leggings in cold and wet weather, and what recommendations you would make. I am walking very early April from Braga over a mountain route.
I have seen men wearing leggings for a few years now and they started to appeal to me after my Xmas Camino, a Peregrino who wore them going over Monte's de Leon in extreme windy and wet weather said his legs kept warm under the fleece brushed lining. They appeal to me because I can use them at night under my duvet and wear them( or not) under shorts depending on what I encounter during the day. I have no personal experience of wearing them so I don't know what I should be aware of or wary of. Any advice gratefully received.
 
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trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
I was wondering if any posters have experience of wearing leggings in cold and wet weather, and what recommendations you would make. I am walking very early April from Braga over a mountain route.
I have seen men wearing leggings for a few years now and they started to appeal to me after my Xmas Camino, a Peregrino who wore them going over Monte's de Leon in extreme windy and wet weather said his legs kept warm under the fleece brushed lining. They appeal to me because I can use them at night under my duvet and wear them( or not) under shorts depending on what I encounter during the day. I have no personal experience of wearing them so I don't know what I should be aware of or wary of. Any advice gratefully received.
I have the women's version of these Montbell merino leggings. They need to be worn under something.

 

Kanga

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés x 5, Le Puy x 2, Arles, Tours, Norte, Madrid, Via de la Plata, Portuguese, Primitivo
I’m not a man but do wear leggings under a skirt. I’ve tried lots. Merino leggings were good in the cold and wet, but no good at keeping out the wind. Double knit silk leggings purchased to wear under motorcycle jeans work a treat, very comfortable, good in the wet, stay warm, protect from wind. The negatives are cost, and drying time.

A winner, bang for buck, Uniqlo (heat tech?) or Decathlon, artificial fibre thermals.
 

Isca-camigo

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Various ones.
I have the women's version of these Montbell merino leggings. They need to be worn under something.
I am hoping that I can get something that can stand up to the rain, wind and cold, and keep me warm, that does not necessarily mean I will stay dry, but it probably means the material will be s quick drying one and also have good heat retention properties. My waterproof ovretrousers will remain at home, I wetted out in them through body perspiration at Xmas and they only served to keep my trousers wetter longer.
 

Isca-camigo

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Various ones.
A winner, bang for buck, Uniqlo or Decathlon, artificial fibre thermals.
The Peregrino who wore the leggings at Xmas wore a women's decathlon brand- Wedze, he had tried to get Merino but they were sold out. He was quite impressed with the leggings, he wore them under shorts
 
Camino(s) past & future
2012 SJPP-Burgos, 2014 Burgos-Leon, 2018 Leon-Santiago
Hi,
Helly Hanson makes an inexpensive (relatively)
men’s legging which I use for cold-weather hiking, either under long pants or under shorts, depending on conditions.
They’re not merino, and that’s okay with me. They’re very lightweight and they insulate and wick well, but they’re not wool. Since I’m usually on the Camino in April or May I generally leave them out of my kit in Spain.
I hope you find what you need. I would certainly bring mine if I were walking in winter or early spring.
All the best,
Paul
 

Phoenix

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
2014, CF: partial
2016, CF
2018, CF: partial
2019, CP
The Patagonia Capilene Base Layer is the best I've ever used. Not only serves the purpose well, but is a quality product. I've worn day/night mountain climbing, hiking, and other cold weather activities. Highly recommend.
 

Terry Callery

Chi Walker
Camino(s) past & future
"Portuguese Camino - In Search of the Infinite Moment" Amazon/Kindle books authored
"Slow Camino"
It's not that cold. My last camino in Portugal was in February and every day was above freezing and got up to at least 50 by noon.
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF2012,Le Puy/CF 2015 Portugues 2017 Norte 2018, CF 2019
It's not that cold. My last camino in Portugal was in February and every day was above freezing and got up to at least 50 by noon.
You were lucky my friend and as we all know you never know. I walked the CF in November and December 2019 and we had winds for days up to 80K per hour, freezing temperatures, heavy snow, and when we didnt have heavy snow, rain almost every day, fog in the morning and you get the idea. I never took my leggings off. When I walked the Norte the year before I wore them every night on the last 3rd of the Camino as it was colder some nights in the albergue than outside. Wore them most mornings until about 10 or so also. When I walked the CP I too had fantastic weather. Buen Camino
 

Isca-camigo

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Various ones.
It's not that cold. My last camino in Portugal was in February and every day was above freezing and got up to at least 50 by noon.
.You just can not tell what the weather will be like. I read a blog from an Italian couple who walked the way I am going last April, one day the temps were pushing 30c the next it was below 10 and hailstoning quite heavily, I am going prepared for various scenarios.
 

henrythedog

Loved and fed by David
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2017, 2018, 2019, Ingles 2018, (Madrid 2019 partial - retired hurt!) (more planned)
I was wondering if any posters have experience of wearing leggings in cold and wet weather, and what recommendations you would make. I am walking very early April from Braga over a mountain route.
I have seen men wearing leggings for a few years now and they started to appeal to me after my Xmas Camino, a Peregrino who wore them going over Monte's de Leon in extreme windy and wet weather said his legs kept warm under the fleece brushed lining. They appeal to me because I can use them at night under my duvet and wear them( or not) under shorts depending on what I encounter during the day. I have no personal experience of wearing them so I don't know what I should be aware of or wary of. Any advice gratefully received.
If you wear leggings under shorts you will be assumed to be American. If that’s not an issue for you, and you don’t mind the look, there are lots of options. Running tights combine a bit of insulation with some wind proofing, are very lightweight and quick to dry.

Alternatively , I’ve for a brilliant idea for those like me who prefer to walk in shorts, but want some insulation down to the lower leg whilst also looking like I‘ve not bought my clothes at a toddlers outfitters.

How about some shorts which - and here’s the clever thing - reach down to the ankles. I’m still working on a catchy name, but for the time being I’m calling them ‘trousers’.

Serious answer: running tights and ignore the laughter.
 

Isca-camigo

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Various ones.
Running tights combine a bit of insulation with some wind proofing, are very lightweight and quick to dry.
I have been looking at them but I don't know where to start or the reliability of the ones I have looked at.
How about some shorts which - and here’s the clever thing - reach down to the ankles. I’m still working on a catchy name, but for the time being I’m calling them ‘trousers
Your on to something there, it could catch on.

Typically I am trying to lose bulk,, weight and quantity of items I am taking with me, my luxury item on the Camino is Merino leggings which I now wear under a duvet at night and of old in a sleeping bag, I have had knee and ankle injuries in the past and I find the leggings at night keep a steady temp on my legs and I avoid aches and pains. So on that basis could I use my night leggings as my day walking thermals if needed. Merino is ok but as said above it doesn't stop the wind and when I have been wet in the past Merino underperforms in heat retention compared to some fleeces I have had.
If you wear leggings under shorts you will be assumed to be American
I have met some incredible Americans, so not a problem for me👍
 

Stivandrer

Perambulating & Curious. Rep stravaiging offender
Camino(s) past & future
I´ve got Camino plans until 2042,
- or till I fall flat on my face, whichever comes first !!
I have, in the name of weight saving, used the following tactic:

Taking off from snow clad Denmark in April in minus 2 dgr Centigr in shorts with the addition of leg warmers instead of leggings.
That is - individual legs, tucked up under my shorts, and made me look like a black stork in the airport...

Arriving in Barcelona in 20 + degrees, I just went to the Men´s and removed the leggings, hey presto...


these leggings do not have to be waterproof, or merino for that matter,the mere addition to the skin is sufficient to keep you warm in , say, cold rain for a whole day, and still be wearing shorts....
dead cheap solution. and weighs next to nothing. Dry easily too...
 

Isca-camigo

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Various ones.
I just went to the Men´s and removed the leggings, hey presto...
Unless there was another need you didn't even have to go to the toilet😉 you could have gone " hey presto" in the terminal.
leg warmers instead of leggings
I'm not sure, I need a bit of time to process this addition🤔. It's taken me nearly 10 years to get from trousers to leggings, thank you for your suggestion
 

jozero

Been there, going again...
Camino(s) past & future
CF x 3
I wear Ice Breaker merino wool long underwear/leggings in the winter months. They are quite lightweight and give me enough warmth without being overly hot and they have zero scratch factor for me. They are also on the loose side which I prefer over tight ones. Because they are pretty lightweight they also dry pretty quickly and because they are wool they do not need to be washed too often (assuming you are wearing a normal pair of underwear below, I suppose). The two biggest downsides are price and the fact that they are a little 'delicate'. I took a tumble on a hike and where my knee contacted the ground it opened a hole in the leggings. I've sewed it shut and after a year it remains so but nevertheless, they are delicate.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015)
Le Puy (2016)
Vézelay (2019)
Norte (2019)
Hi @Isca-camigo
I’ve found icebreaker leggings to be too warm. I used silk leggings (bought online) last year (April on the Vézelay Route) and they worked for me. Lightweight and dry quickly. The family laughed but they didn’t walk with me!
Biggest problem is they bleed black die when you wash them.
John
 

Isca-camigo

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Various ones.
I use cycling leg warmers, easy to take on and off, don’t take up any room.
I think leg warmers are great idea for swapping in changeable conditions and they tick a lot of boxes apart from one which is essential for me, do they keep all of my legs and lower waist warm at night when I sleep in them. But I think I have kinda accepted the idea of them so I will look at them further. Thanks
 

JabbaPapa

"True Pilgrim"
Camino(s) past & future
100 characters or fewer : see signature details
I was wondering if any posters have experience of wearing leggings in cold and wet weather, and what recommendations you would make. I am walking very early April from Braga over a mountain route.
I have seen men wearing leggings for a few years now and they started to appeal to me after my Xmas Camino, a Peregrino who wore them going over Monte's de Leon in extreme windy and wet weather said his legs kept warm under the fleece brushed lining. They appeal to me because I can use them at night under my duvet and wear them( or not) under shorts depending on what I encounter during the day. I have no personal experience of wearing them so I don't know what I should be aware of or wary of. Any advice gratefully received.
An old 1980s ski-ing trick for wet and cold slopes was to wear women's tights under your ski trousers -- similar to this was my need for a few years prior to my 2014 to train with knee braces, and finding that I needed to adapt a similar system underneath the braces to avoid chafing and blistering at the knees.

From that, I'd suggest that you could use either thick nylon women's leggings, or else ultra-thin men's cyclist summer leggings.

Else well, just get yourself a full-on traditional pair of long-johns !!! (I would certainly have done so myself if they were easily obtained for my crazy leg length) -- this would be the most comfortable solution.

Having said that --- well, April this year is liable to be warm, not cold.

Last summer was an absolute crazy scorcher, and though there have been some nasty cold spells in northern Europe, here down south it's been the mildest winter in a decade or more. 2020 is arming up to be yet another Camino scorcher ... (I've been in a t-shirt for weeks now)

(but there will of course be cold days and nights anyway)
 

chinacat

Veteran Member
@Isca-camigo

These:


are thicker and more substantial than Icebreakers.

Alpkit is in the UK; I’m not sure where you are ... or whether they ship overseas.

Their merino is as good, if not better, than Icebreaker.
(Their women’s merino underwear is cut for a great fit, too.)
They are ‘eco-aware‘ and donate a small percentage of every sale to their own outdoor charity.

Edit:
Jack Wolfskin used to do long johns/leggings in a thin polartec ... in a weave a bit like airtex ... with excellent ‘wicking’ qualities.
They are very durable - my pair dates from the mid-eighties! (there wasn’t much available in women’s versions at the time 🙄)

They don’t seem to have men’s available (in the UK, at least) at the moment, but here are some women’s ones, with 30% off.
Merino with a synthetic outer for durability.

 
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Isca-camigo

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Various ones.
I am taking the Alpkit balance waterproof as my coat in April and have looked at both leggings they do as a possible option, but what puts me off Merino as a legging for walking is if it gets wet and cold is twice on previous Caminos my waterproofs have failed, Merino has certain amount of heat retention but it does not compare as well as fleece, and that is an aspect I am looking for in my leggings.
 

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