I sweat ALOT HELP!

10:46 p.m. on March 28, 2010 (EDT)
0 reviewer rep
4 forum posts

I sweat alot when I hike. Even if I wear wicking material I sweat. I try layering and this does not work. SO:

1. How do I stay dry, what are the best things to wear if you sweat profusely like I do?

2. How do I get my clothes to dry out once they are wet. I am doing the Sheneandoah National Park first week of May 105 miles in a week, by the end of the third hour of hiking or so I will have a wet sweatshirt to deal with. If I slow down to the point I dont sweat I will never do 15-20 miles a day.

Any thoughts let me know. I wear Polyester. If I layer the under layer always becomes sloppy wet no matter how warm or cold it is on outside. I like Patagonia, UnderArmor, love Royal Robbin pants and exofficio undies. SMart wool socks do work for me, mainily the top part of my body and my head are my two main sweating units.

Am worried about potential hypothermia if I do not dry out the wet clothes and more preferably I want to prevent them from getting wet in first place!

Thanks a million,


3:11 a.m. on March 29, 2010 (EDT)
102 reviewer rep
2,993 forum posts

If you are a big kid or have alopecia (a genetic trait to sweat excessively) there isn’t much you can do to sweat less. If you are worried about hypothermia, you need to slow down and minimize saturating your clothes.
I use a Hawaiian shirt on top and running shorts on bottom when packing a load. Those cheap rayon shirts work well; the shorts should also be a synthetic fabric. The loose fitting shirt and shorts are old tips from gonzo trekkers of the 1970s. They won't stop you sweating, but they quickly dry. Avoid wearing other layers if possible, since they take longer to dry, and that can be a problem in cold weather. If you must add more layers, first try adding shell garments, before adding other items that you prefer not get soaked with sweat.

9:46 a.m. on March 29, 2010 (EDT)
0 reviewer rep
415 forum posts

I'll add an observation: my brother-in-law used to be a triathlete and he had the same issues with sweat: none of the so-called "wicking" fabrics helped him in the slightest. He just wet them out (this made winter bike training deeply uncomfortable).

What I concluded from this is that as a very athletic individual, he could maintain a high level of activity that would simply tire out lesser mortals -- but one consequence of that fitness level was a lot more sweat.

As the poster above advises, the first thing you might try is simply slowing down so you don't work your body so hard and produce so much sweat. Actually it's not that simple, as you have a natural walking pace and going against it probably requires a certain level of concentration.

I'm not certain this will work, as your body might readjust to the lower activity level and still produce the same amount of sweat, but it might be worth a try.

10:22 a.m. on March 29, 2010 (EDT)
52 reviewer rep
200 forum posts

If SmartWool works for your feet, you might try SmartWool's base layer garments.

12:28 p.m. on March 29, 2010 (EDT)
4,419 reviewer rep
6,010 forum posts

Part of the problem is that the Smokies are in the part of the US where it tends to be humid. This means that the sweat won't evaporate very rapidly. When we lived in Mississippi, New England, and in the DC area, I frequently would be dripping within a short time when bicycling, hiking, or climbing (well, no climbing in MS) at any time of year. Sometimes it was so bad that the sweat from my head running into my eyes made my eyes sting (from the salt in the sweat), especially in MS in the summer. Here in California, where the humidity is much lower, I hardly get wet at all except when a humid frontal system passes through.

One thing that helps that wasn't mentioned is wearing less. The wicking layers also act as insulation, plus it takes time for the moisture to wick through before evaporating. If you wear less in the way of layers, the sweat can evaporate off more quickly (in MS in summer, that didn't help me, even going shirtless - which wasn't allowed during bike races anyway, since you are required to wear your team or club jersey). You are unlikely to need more than just the one thin layer at that time of year in the Smokies when moving.

So I would suggest NOT wearing that sweatshirt you mention. Stick with a thin wicking T-shirt. You say your hike will be the first week in May. In my hiking there, the humidity is in the 80-90% range at that time of year, and temperatures are pretty much above 70F. So you will be generating enough heat that you don't need more than a T-shirt (long-sleeved for sun protection if you want). I doubt that hypothermia is a worry at that time of year. When you stop for a rest, if it is breezy, then put on a very light windbreaker (thin nylon shell), which you stick back in your pack when you are ready to start hiking again.

9:11 p.m. on March 29, 2010 (EDT)
1,663 reviewer rep
3,956 forum posts

Boy, if only some cottage gear maker would sell a shirt made out of a Shamwow! Those things will soak up a bunch of water and then wring right out.

Hiking in the S. Appalachians in warmer months usually means high humidity as already mentioned. If you are sweating heavily the sweat will not evaporate at an acceptable rate in my experience.

One trick I use is to wear a cotton Tee shirt, yes I know "cotton is rotten", but hang with me a moment here. If the humidity level is high, and your perspiration level is high, wicking layers may not be able to keep up. I often wear a cotton T, or cotton & nylon mix shirt under these conditions. I carry several shirts and rotate them, keeping one in reserve (dry,clean). I can clip or pin one or two to my pack and let them dry as I hike, if needed I can hang them up overnight under my tarp. The latter works best with a cotton nylon blend I think.

If daytime temps are above 60F and you have warm dry clothes to put on at night, hypothermia should not be a problem.

For hot humid hikes I prefer the thinest T shirt or button up I can find and just change shirts often. I also wear loose fitting shorts (or pants if needed) with no underwear, this cuts way down on moisture problems which I have had trouble with in the past.

It took me a while and some experimenting to find out what worked for me, I hope you find what works for you!

10:31 p.m. on March 29, 2010 (EDT)
0 reviewer rep
4 forum posts

Thank you all for taking the time to reply. Very much appreciated. I had hiked a weekend trip in the Shandandoah national park a few years back, just an overnight camping excursion, not much hiking actually, with the PATC. ANyway, got to be 35 degrees at night, and I remember wearing gloves when we started to hike out to the car. First week of May too. I will try starting my hike with less on, and keep it to one layer only and change layers often before overheating.

THanks again.

1:08 a.m. on March 30, 2010 (EDT)
0 reviewer rep
1 forum posts

I have always been plagued by the same problem.. So I feel your pain. I know just what you mean .. the wicking material does not mean jack to me. There is nothing to wick when it gets soaked. However, it does server one very important function. It dries quickly. Anything Cotton is going to take forever to dry. So they key is taking at least 1 or 2 changes of clothes. All lightweight and all fast drying. It is really the only option.

During the day while hiking ..as soon as you warm up and begin sweating shed the top layers. This way the only thing that gets soaked is one short/long sleeve poly/nylon shirt and pants. When you stop for camp in the evening Change into your dry gear asap and hang out the sweat rags to begin drying ASAP. ( If you are like me .. you will literally ring them out first ) In the morning .. they should be dry and put them back on.

Its sucks to have to carry the extra weight of a change or two of clothes but its worth it.

4:56 a.m. on April 8, 2010 (EDT)
4 reviewer rep
70 forum posts

i agree with da king i sweat a lot 2 guess cause im haryer dan big foot.so i bring a x tra change of clothes that are fast dry as well.id hike naked but da athorities get upset.LOL

June 20, 2018
Quick Reply

Please sign in to reply

More Topics
This forum: Older: Your favorite knife (you own) Newer: Grand Canyon NPS videos on Youtube
All forums: Older: WANTED, DANA DESIGNS LONGBED LOADMASTER Newer: Purisima Creek - Half Moon Bay, CA