I haven't used cuddleduds, but I like wool because it keeps me warm without getting sweaty, which sometimes happens for me with synthetics. And it's warm even when it's wet. And smart wool tights give you an extra layer for your feet, if you put socks over them
But seriously now, luckily in my area of NZ it doesn't get that cold, or not until the very end of the season. Sometimes I've hunted further south (Taupo and King Country hunts) and while I'm sure the temp is above freezing it doesn't feel that way by the end of the day!
Icebreaker branded stuff is the best that I've found - it's merino wool and really soft, you just wash and dry it and it lasts forever (and doesn't get stinky). Icebreaker leggings under regular jods, ditto long sleeved top. I also have a med weight jersey of the same brand that has a decent length zipper that I can wear between my shirt and my jacket, with the zipper undone and the collar folded back you can't easily see it. The jersey is from 2000 and aside from a hole in the front and some fraying on a sleeve you wouldn't know - this stuff lasts! If I regularly hunted somewhere colder I'd buy a heavier weight jacket, but I just don't need it for my hunt - often it's pretty warm
Polar fleece gloves and merino wool socks are good for the extremities.
Ear Bags are THE BEST!! You can hear really well through them. I currently have a leopard pair. Also, Patagonia used to make a balaclava in a really thin fabric like silk--black--I have a couple of those and it fits well under your helmet--you can also hear well through them. For hands--Pearl Ozumi winter bicycling gloves.
Inside the wool socks, sprinkle a lot of baby powder or some other kind of powder on your feet--keeps them warmer.
I had a black cashmere zip up sweater that had a hood. I wore it, hood up, under my helmet one hunt day when the highs didn't make it past 26 degrees F.
I have had good luck with the fleece ear warmers.
A friend made me a stock tie out of white flannel.
I have poor circulation in my hands and feet, so keeping them warm is always a challenge. I have these. I use them for riding and barn chores. If it's REALLY cold, I put the chemical hand warmers inside the palm area of the glove. Periodically I pull my fingers out of their slots and wrap them around the warmer. I have these to keep my feet warm. I have used the chemical warmers for my feet, but I find one of two things happen with those: 1. My boots are too tight, so not enough oxygen gets in there to activate them or 2. I wear the larger boots and then they make my feet sweat.
Smart wool socks are great. I'm very much interested in the smart wool tights.
I have the Devon Aire knee patch, fleece breeches. They are very warm, but are slicker than regular breeches. I bought a pair of the Tuff Rider full seat, fleece breeches. I wore them 1 time. The full seat wore through and I had a hole in my breeches. Luckily when standing it wasn't visible, but to say the least I was VERY disappointed in the brand. Oddly, I have a pair of black ones for every day riding and have not had the same experience with them. The main problem with that brand in full seat is that the suede like part is the only material present in that area. Some other full seat breeches have the regular material covered by the sueded material, so a double thickness through the full seat area. Not so with the Tuff Rider fleece, full seats. This is when I wished I had bought them at a tack shop. I wouldn't have bought them for that reason, much less the wear through in one ride.
Feliz, The hip flask is a VERY important part of a cold day!! I have tasted so many different things that I have a hard time picking a favorite, but Wild Turkey Honey Liquer is near the top.
Kerrits Sit Tite N' Warm breeches - they are fleece lined and keep my wonderfullyl warm during winter riding. I'm pretty sure they come in tan. . .
Tuff Rider has some really warm fleece lined breeches - I have them in tan. I don't foxhunt, but I ride in winter too and I also love my Mountain Horse Active Winter Riders - tall fleece lined boots that keep feet toasty. I have some old snap-to-the-helmet straps ear muffs I got from Stateline tack years and years ago that I love. Now if anyone can show me a glove that will truly keep my hands warm I will love you forever. I can't keep my hands warm no matter how many different types of gloves I've tried. I'm thinking of breaking down and buying the ones lined with cashmere from Lands End. Sigh.
Now if anyone can show me a glove that will truly keep my hands warm I will love you forever. I can't keep my hands warm no matter how many different types of gloves I've tried. I'm thinking of breaking down and buying the ones lined with cashmere from Lands End. Sigh.
I would be thrilled to find such gloves as well. I find the SSG -10 (er 10 belows?) are not warm enough. My hands still get cold in them
I have to say that I love my heavy Melton hunt coat. Worth the investment if you tend to get cold. It is like wearing your warmest winter coat. It's usually too warm, but on those days in the 30s or colder I just love it!
Still need a good flask to warm those hands and feet.
Chemical hand warmers with Tractor Supply lined work gloves.
On top: Under Armour, silk turtleneck,riding shirt, wool melton or lined carhartt (depending on if we have to dress), wool scarf
Anti perspirant on my feet.
The goal is to be warm enough for standing but able to have a long run and not sweat. If you're a first flight kinda rider, dress for sweating. If you have reason to be hanging back, dress for being still more often. This advice comes from Hunting a green bean this season and I've had both situations.
When my 10 below gloves aren't enough (and that is long before it's 10 below), then I switch to mittens. I have a variety of them and wear wool liners in them. I have fleece ones, leather ones that are already fleeced lined (but still add the wool liners), ski ones, bright orange rubber ones. If you think that is funny looking...you should see my heavy duty orange long wristed rubber gloves I wear for heavy rain!..they're for folks using chemicals but they work great! Not exactly the best for a finessed "feel" but I like my hands warm. Frozen hands don't do me much good!
for my ears, I use a hand knitted ear warmer....extends from the top of one ear around the neck up to the top of the other ear. The ear pieces are held together at the top with grograin ribbon, so it fits under a helmet (or cowboy hat) without compromising the helmet fit. Then when it is really cold I'll add the over the polartec helmet fleece cover from Dover. I find that alone, it allows the wind to whip right into my ears because of the space created when it goes from over the helmet to wrapping around under your neck. I also will wear winter riding pants over my breeches for rain/snow or cold and winter riding boots. My philosophy is that if it is cold enough for me to need winter gear and the hunt doesn't think it is proper wear then they must be a hunt I wouldn't be interested anyway. Hypothermia is no joke. Same for sunglasses..every ride.
I have the winter Kerrits (I just checked, and they don't have a style name in them). Fleece-y and windproof. They've been on TOTD a couple times now for 50 bucks and come in tan. They're warmer and more comfortable than Under Armour with regular breeches, and come all the way down to your ankle.
He, He. I say at no one's expense, but in good fun that you fellow foxhunters from VA and down south give me a little laugh when you talk about how cold it gets during your hunts! Here in Michigan, is gets COLD by November and we use of every trick in the books to get buy.
Here are a couple of additional thoughts:
Use 2 chemical foot warmers per boot. One on top of each foot, just behind the toes, and one on the outside of each leg, just above the ankels.
Put a small chemical hand warmer in each glove, on the backs of your hands. (Chemical toe warmers do not work for gloves, the can get uncomfortably hot.
Wear a neck gaiter! Sealing off the body heat that escapes from your coat makes a big difference.
Swix Are great! Couldn't get through a Colorado hunt season without them!They are very small, warm and stay in place. They are a lot less bulky than the fleece bands that I see on people. These are practically invisible. LOVE!!!
I have a black V-neck for formal days and a camel one for informal.
They go under the vest and are not seen once your coat is on. They provide just the right amount of extra warmth without adding too much bulk. This is a great way to get some use out of a sweater that a moth has had it's way with...
I have also been known to wrangle it off once the weather warms up and tie it on to my breastplate or throw it in one of the follow vehicles with a friend if I start to overheat.
OK I feel compelled to share 2 things about keeping warm too.....I can be SUCH a buzz kill!!
1. Be well hydrated before hunting. Drink a LOT of fluids before. And after. Avoid caffeinated or alcoholic beverages before as they dehydrate you which is the opposite of what you'll need on a cold day. Remember panting & exercising means increased fluid loss from your lungs & kidneys. Especially in the super dry winter air. Eating a good breakfast will also give you something to hold onto the fluids and slow their absorption. Sometimes you get the shivvers a couple hours later when you've "thawed" out some....that's a sign of needing fluids so drink, drink, drink.....
2. Avoid alcohol before & during hunting in cold weather. Alcohol dilates your peripheral blood vessels in your extremities. This exposes your blood to the cold temps in your extremities and lowers your core temp and you get COLDER! That initial warm flush you feel is your stomach and blood vessels dilating. When you are cold; you naturally shrink blood vessels in your arms/legs which keeps you warmer overall. Ask a Ski Patrol person what causes hypothermia the quickest out on the ski slope and they will tell you booze! Sorry folks! I hear your collective groans. Just a sip might not hurt. Remember alcohol is a neuro-toxin so it fools you into thinking you are warm - trust me...you ain't!!!
Hey it fools me into thinking I'm thinner, sexier, more beautiful so only use it in controlled environments like bars! or home!