The fact of the matter is, hibernating isn’t an option for us horsey folk. Ours is a year-round sport, fair weather riders need not apply. So we need to be properly equipped to cope with the conditions – because apparently there is no bad weather, only inappropriate clothing. So with that in mind, here is my selection of best buys to help you survive the winter in style.
Once more unto the breech, dear friends ...
Pikeur Lucinda winter breeches (RRP £177)
Water and wind resistant softshell fabric, with a fleece lining for extra warmth. What I really love about these are the contrast colours of the full seat, and the cut with a slightly lower waist. So stylish. If you’re splashing out, these have got to go straight in your basket.
Fouganza Kipwarm jodhpurs (£39.99)
Absolutely cheap as chips – if you’re on a budget, for less than £40 you can buy these. Waterproof, breathable, and fleece lined. Not as stylish as your more expensive brands, but super functional.
Townend Imp Softshell breeches (RRP £95) The mid-rangers. Waterproof, breathable and fleece lined with a leather full seat. Excellent everyday winter breeches. Find them here at Viovet for a great price. New customer? Use this code for a discount: VRCUBIGQQ
Treats for your feet; on the yard and in the saddle
Aigle Parcours 2 ISO Wellington boot (RRP £170). The ultimate wellington boot. Having tried several other brands from cheap n cheerful to overpriced crap, I bought these. Hard wearing, toasty as you like with thick neoprene, and supremely comfortable. Treat your feet, you need these in your life.
Ariat Berwick GTX Insulated yard boot (Approx £349) Love these. Thinsulate insulation, waterproof and breathable, featuring zip up back and lace up fronts. Stylish and practical.
Ariat Bromont H20 Insulated riding boots (RRP £274.99) I’ve heard nothing but good feedback on these – they are super smart leather boots (especially in brown) suitable for competition or riding at home. They provide insulation without added bulk so they still look sleek and elegant, as well as a waterproof membrane. Worth a splurge.
Mark Todd fleece lined winter riding boot (RRP £129.99) These nubuck leather boots are more your everyday riding at home winter boots, with a more affordable price tag. The full fleece lining is a winner for keeping you warm.
Mountain Horse Active Winter High Rider (Around £150) The faux fur lining on these make them toasty warm on cold days. They feel really good quality and supportive, with a contoured zip and the sole is specially designed for winter wet or frozen conditions. Everything you’d expect from a Swedish company!
Sealskinz winter riding gloves (Around £45). Waterproof, breathable and windproof – a proper winter glove. These can cope with all kinds of cold, wet weather.
Mountain Horse winter performance glove (RRP £27.99) Four layer waterproof winter riding gloves for the worst of weather. Reinforced areas where your reins sit, and a neoprene cuff at the wrist for extra warmth and room for your underlayers to sit. A brilliant glove and absolute must-have for hacking and round the yard – for my liking a bit bulky for schooling.
Mark Todd thinsulate winter gloves (RRP £19.95)
A really good value glove combining a stylish appearance with practical warmth. Thinsulate lining and a pigskin outer make these a great choice for winter.
Mac Wet climatec sports gloves (Approximately £29.99) These climatec gloves are like a second skin – so lightweight and non bulky that you can still do buckles and bridles in them, but with wind proof, water resistant and fleece lined material on the back of the glove for extra warmth. The Aquatec fabric gives you fantastic grip on the reins, even if it’s raining or your horse has sweated.
Over the top
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Equetech Sherrington Long Quilted jacket_ (Approximately £145.95)
Everyone needs a duvet coat. This long bio-down insulated jacket will keep out the chill, and also features a zip back so you can even wear it in the saddle to keep your legs warm.
Cavallo Flavia parka jacket (RRP £185)
This gorgeous tailored parka is waterproof, windproof and breathable making it both practical and stylish in the winter months. Comes in a range of colours, is fitted with a rear vent so you can wear it whilst riding, and is long enough to keep the tops of your legs toasty too.
Ariat Highland jacket (RRP £199.99)
A shorter jacket, which provides warmth and insulation without bulk. A comfortable and flattering fit, this waterproof jacket is ideal for round the yard or in the saddle.
Mark Todd Reinga waterproof riding over trousers. (RRP £77.99)
A full length zip on the outside of the leg and polystretch fabric ensures you can keep dry in the worst of weather but without feeling restricted in the saddle.
_Dublin thermal waterproof overtrousers. (RRP £39.99)
These are lightly padded to provide insulation without bulk, and fully waterproof. The design features full length zips on the outer making them easy to get on and off, as well as a synthetic suede seat to keep you secure in the saddle. Exceptional value.
Mountain Horse Polar Breeches. (RRP £135)
These stylish riding trousers are a little like ski trousers but with modifications to make them perfect for riding. They are waterproof, breathable and windproof, featuring full length zips on the outside, full seat and pre-bent knees.
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All about the base
Hot togs ultra thermal leggings (Approximately £15)
These comfy, warm leggings make a fantastic base layer. The close fit ensures they stay put underneath breeches. I lived in these last winter. Great value.
Calm leisure bamboo active top and base layer (£44.95) The breathable, moisture wicking base layers are super soft and fit really close to your skin. Unlike some other synthetic versions, this won’t get smelly.
Sock it to me
Hot togs thermolite socks (Approximately £9.50)
These super socks are toasty warm and comfortable, but without as much bulk as some thermal socks. This means they are great for wearing with wellies on the yard, when out walking, and still fit inside your riding boots.
Ahead of the game
Helmet Ears winter warmer bundle (From £25)
I cannot live without these in winter! Buy a Helmet Ears winter warmer bundle to cover all bases; a balaclava and buff to keep your neck area warm, a fleecy headband to wear around the yard to save you from ear ache in the cold and wind, and my personal favourite the riding hat attachment to keep your ears protected whilst you’re riding. Buy the audio version to listen to Christmas songs as you go, guaranteed to make mucking out more enjoyable...not that I’ve tried this! ;-)
Nuumed ear pads (Approximately £16.95).
Cute little ear pads for your riding hat featuring Nuumed’s classic wool lining.