As the temperatures begin to plummet in the fall, it gets more challenging to stay comfortable out on the water.
Your first line of defense in cold weather is to get yourself some solid outerwear. Although a good jacket is probably the first thing that comes to mind, a quality hat works wonders for your fall boating comfort.
No matter what your needs may be (i.e. fishing, cruising, windy conditions), there is a hat out there for you. I’ve put together a list of some favorites, but first, let’s go over some important considerations when choosing the right hat for you.
Choosing the Right Material
The most common materials used for cold weather hats are polyester, acrylic, and wool. Each has its unique pros and cons.
Polyester is a very popular choice for all types of outerwear due to its impressive strength and durability. In addition, polyester does not absorb any moisture and is, therefore, an excellent breathable, wicking fabric. The main drawback, however, is that it will hold on to oils and stains.
Acrylic’s main strength is its warmth and is typically likened to wool. In addition, acrylic is a softer fabric and that may be an important comfort factor for some boaters. This softness, unfortunately, makes acrylic less resilient and these hats will have reduced longevity compared to polyester ones.
Wool is a natural choice for warmth and moisture-wicking performance. A unique characteristic of wool is that it will still trap heat when damp. Nature’s fabric of choice comes at a much higher cost, however, and these hats will be more expensive than acrylic and polyester options.
Keeping this information in mind, here are some of my top picks for hats this fall boating season.
Carhartt Acrylic Watch Hat
Carhartt is known for its unrelenting quality standards in clothing and outerwear. It’s no surprise, then, that the company’s Acrylic Watch Hat is one of the most highly-rated hats on the Overton’s website.
Made of 100% acrylic, this hat provides exceptional warmth in a soft and stretchy material. With 10 color options to choose from and a price tag of just $14.99, this hat is an excellent value.
Chaos Dylan Aviator Hat
If you live in a more northern climate, fall temperatures can get down to the 40s and 30s and with windchills, it can feel even colder. Growing up in Minnesota, I had a pretty toasty fall hat like this one for my fall fishing outings.
The Chaos Dylan Aviator Hat is made of a 50/50 polyester and wool blend, offering superior warmth and durability. The unique aviator style includes ear flaps that provide additional coverage for these extra cold boat trips.
Women’s Carhartt Cable Knit Pom Hat
This women’s hat is a uniquely-stylish way to keep warm this fall. The attractive cable knit pattern is topped with a faux fur pom. Using a fiber blend consisting of nearly 60% wool, the Carhartt Cable Knit Pom hat is the perfect combination of substance and style.
Columbia Fast Trek Fleece Headring
Not so much a hat, the Fast Trek Fleece Headring is a great option for warmer fall days on the water. Your ears are the first part of your head to take on the fall chill, but a full-size knit cap is sometimes just way too hot. Keep your ears toasty without overheating with this high-quality, 100% polyester headband.
CTR Howler Multi-Tasker Pro Fleece Balaclava
If nothing can stop you from fishing and you plan to brave the fall squalls, the CTR Howler is for you. Featuring full-face and neck coverage, the whipping winds are no match for the tough polyester construction of the Howler. Including an active heat-generating fleece lining and lycra binding that tightly seals the fabric to your face, this is your best option for the toughest fall conditions.
Dakine Women’s Audrey Visor Beanie
Searching for a modern look with time-tested functionality? Look no further than Dakine’s Audrey Visor Beanie. An all-acrylic construction provides excellent warmth with a comfortable polyester fleece lining while the visor and button accents keep you looking stylish.
Simms’ Ultra-Wool Core Beanie
This hat is the ultimate combination of warmth, breathability, and moisture-resistance. The Ultra-Wool Core Beanie is made of top-quality, 100% Merino wool and its slim design allows you to easily wear it under your jacket hood for added protection.
Looking for a new hat this fall? Check out our massive selection of quality hats.