Essential Gear for the Canadian Winter

We’ve compiled a list of must-have items to get you through the rest of the winter. Fear not the snow, epic explorer. Get out there and embrace it!

Credit: David Webb

Like it or not, winter in Canada is far from over. On frigid days, the buckets of snow, frosty mornings and increased wind chills can seem never-ending.

But just because it’s cold doesn’t mean you need to stay inside. Here at explore, we want to equip and educate you on the best ways (and best gear) to live the adventure year-round. After all, there’s no such thing as bad weather—just bad clothing.

We’ve compiled a list of must-have items to get you through the rest of the winter. Fear not the snow, epic explorer. Get out there and embrace it! 

ThermoNet Buff Headwear ($35 to $45)

One of our favourite winter staples has just gotten better. One of Buff Headwear’s latest products is made with Primaloft yarn for ultra-warmth without any added bulk. Lightweight, high-stretch, soft and seamless, this Buff Headwear is designed for active lifestyles and cold temperatures. It’s four-times warmer than the original Buff Headwear and made with moisture-wicking fabric—70 per cent of which is recycled from PET bottles.

Bonus—the ThermoNet Buff Headwear comes in three versatile styles: Classic Neckwear, Hat and Balaclava. With a plethora of colours and patterns to choose from (including a mountain print!), we won’t blame you for trying all three.

Video Reviews:

See The Classic ThermoNet Buff Neckwear in Action!

The ThermoNet Buff Headwear takes our top spot—and here are three more items that will make your winter awesome!

Classic Thermos ($45)

Even if you’re getting cold, your beverages shouldn’t be. Fill this 1.3-litre thermos with your favourite coffee, tea or hot chocolate for your next all-day winter adventure.

The Stanley Classic Vacuum Bottle is BPA-free, made of stainless steel with rustproof finish and capped off with an insulated lid that doubles as a cup. It pours from any angle from a twist-stop opener, conveniently designed for gloved hands. The double-wall construction retains initial temperature for 24 hours. 

Winter-Rated Sleeping Bag ($1,000)

If you’re sleeping outside in temperatures ranging from -20 to -30, you need to be snug as a bug—not just for comfort, but for survival. If you’re camping in extreme conditions, Western Mountaineering makes a thermal bag rated to -32 degrees Celsius—the Puma MF.

Insulated with goose down, breathable yet extremely weather-resistant and fitted with two interlocking draft tubes, this mummy-style sleeping bag is made for mountaineering and winter expeditions.

Emergency Blanket ($8)

As important as preparation is, sometimes we get caught out in the cold without our extreme winter gear. One thing that should always be in your gear bag is a space blanket, like the Coleman Emergency Blanket.

Made of polyester, the blanket looks a bit like tinfoil. Its unique construction reflects heat back into your body, so none of the warmth you produce is lost.


As you can see from these four products, just because it’s cold outside doesn’t mean you need to freeze. Bundle up, buy the right equipment and stay warm—all while getting outdoors to explore!

This winter gear article was brought to you by our friends at Buff. On the slopes or off the trails, Buff® Headwear has you covered with cozy Merino Wool, Polar Fleece or the brand new ThermoNet® family featuring Primaloft®. After a day in the snow choose from our knitted collection of colourful neckwarmers and toques. Check out our gift guide and find the perfect Buff® style for you.