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The Best Fleeces, Flannels, and Midlayers

Layering is the key to staying toasty all winter long.

By: The Outbound Collective + Save to a List

Nothing ruins an outing quicker than getting too cold or too warm, which is tough to avoid when you're running around outdoors in the winter. The solution, of course, is to layer properly. Whether we're out on an adventure, heading to into town, or a little bit of both, these are the flannels, fleeces, and midlayers that we never leave home without.

Pladra Women's Peregrine Shirt

"Comfy, warm, fitted, and cute. What more can you ask for in a women's flannel? I acquired my first Pladra Peregrine about 6 months ago after reading women-specific reviews on flannels. It didn't take me long to add a second Peregrine to my wardrobe, and I already have a wishlist of a couple more! My coworkers can attest to the fact that I live in them. Their mid-weight flannel is perfect for the ever-changing San Francisco weather I live in, and it gets me to and from the chilly mountains without having to change layers. Check out my full review here." - Kristi Teplitz


Pendleton Men's Long Sleeve Trail Shirt

"Pendleton's timeless Trail Shirt is a go-to for me when the occasion calls for warmth, comfort, and a little style. For a chilly night out after skiing in Utah or surfing in 60°F water at Ocean Beach, I'll throw on a t-shirt, this flannel, and a puffy and call it good. For my no-frills lifestyle, this shirt is about as nice as I ever dress it up and I always get compliments on it (looking at you, leather elbow patches)." - Liam McNally


Icebreaker Women's Merino Dia Long Sleeve Zip Top

"I fell in love with Icebreaker's Swift zip years ago, and after wearing it to threads, I've been looking for a replacement. The Dia Long Sleeve Zip is the closest I've been able to find. It's thick enough to keep me warm when there's a chill in the air, but thin enough to be super cozy. It packs down decently small for it's merino weight and is fashionable and fitted enough to wear to a meeting or dinner, so it's always packed in my travel bag. It won't completely take the place of my beloved Swift zip, but it's a very close second that I don't leave home without!" - Kristi Teplitz 


Patagonia Women's Lightweight Synchilla® Snap-T® Fleece Pullover

"Cozy doesn't even begin to cover how comfortable this pullover is. Sitting around a campfire in cool fall evenings, this is my favorite fleece to grab. It is extremely warm and is big enough that I can add layers underneath if need be. The only downside for me is not having pockets, but I still love this pullover." - Allison Foster 


Jungmaven Women's New Tahoe Terry Sweatshirt

"Jungmaven is a new brand for me, but I became an instant fan. After five straight days of living in my sweatshirt, I know this one will travel far with me. I'm also not one to normally think about sweatshirts as proper midlayers, but my eyes have been opened! The Tahoe Terry is a midweight sweatshirt made of 55% hemp and 45% organic cotton. It feels like it's a thin, well worn and super cozy sweatshirt, but the weave is super tight and helps block unexpected gusts of wind, making it a surprisingly solid midlayer! The Tahoe Terry Sweatshirt is one I love wearing so much I'm always bummed when it comes time take it off for a shower." - Kristi Teplitz 


Patagonia Men's Woolyester Fleece Pullover

"Ideal for layering under a heavier jacket during the winter or alone during warmer months, not only is this fleece unbelievably cozy, it's part of Patagonia's Woolyester line which is (spoiler alert) sustainably sourced and Fair Trade Certified. It looks good and feels good in more than one way. Win-win-win. My other recent favorite midlayer that's also sustainably sourced and FTC from Patagonia is the P-6 Label Uprisal Crew Sweatshirt. It's so comfortable and surprisingly warm." - Liam McNally


The North Face Men's Ventrix Insulated Jacket

"I love wearing this under my insulated ski jacket on super cold days in the resorts. It regulates heat extremely well so I never overheat which also makes it perfect for touring. I'll wear this as my outer layer on the skin up, then throw on my shell for the pow pow. In addition to skiing, it's a fantastic choice for climbing, hiking, biking, or pretty much anytime you're being active in chilly weather and need to regulate heat." - Liam McNally 


Arc'teryx Men's Cerium LT Hooded Down Jacket

"San Francisco may not be the coldest climate, but I do love this jacket when I head out to the Eastern Sierra in the colder months. It's lightweight and packable, making it really easy to throw in my pack when I'm heading out on my next adventure. On ski days, the slim fit allows it to fit easily under my shell if it's a cold one!" - Tyler Drake 


Cover photo: Ben Canevari

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

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