Enjoy Happy Trails, the free monthly newsletter from Hiking For Her

Plus Size Womens Outdoor Clothing

by Diane Spicer

Find high performance, great looking hiking clothing in extended sizes using these tips from Hiking For Her. #hiking #hikingclothing #hikingtips #backpacking #plussizeclothing #extendedsizinghikers

Searching for the best plus size womens outdoor clothing  (also called extended sizes) for hikers?

You know, hiking clothes which fit and look good while working hard for you on the trail?

They are hard to find. You can find it with these tips!

The grim reality of
plus size womens outdoor clothing

Somehow, it's difficult for most outdoor gear companies to fathom the reality on the trail.

Women hikers come in all ages, sizes, shapes and heights.

What a frustrating experience!

  • Searching for high performance hiking clothing, available in plus sizes, shouldn't be impossible.
  • Finding stuff that actually fits a woman's curves, why is that so hard?

Check out the new kid on the block, Alpine Parrot.

Plus sizes, designed by a hiker, woo hoo!

Read why Hiking For Her recommends this company

Alpine Parrot PBC - Outdoor Apparel for Bigger Bodies

Luckily, you're on the right page!

You're in the right spot if you're looking for ideas on what to wear hiking.

That includes:

  • plus size convertible hiking pants, skirts or shorts
  • moisture wicking shirts and sports bras
  • waterproof rain pants and jacke ts

Hiking For Her is an affiliate of the brands on this page, for one reason: they make good stuff!

If you buy through the links on this website, you pay nothing extra. HFH receives a small percentage of your sales price.

Shopping for 
plus size womens outdoor clothing 

Ever have this happen to you?

You go into an outdoor clothing retail shop.

You spend a few minutes browsing through the selections.

You look at the hiking pants, hiking shirts, rain gear and other womens hiking apparel and active wear.

You continue to search for your size.


As in zip. Zilch.


Frustration turns to anger.

  • Big sigh, then a deep breath before you move on to the men's department, or leave the store in disgust.

Please don't take the lack of women's extended sizes in hiking clothes personally.

  • You are not alone in your quest for the best plus size womens outdoor clothing for hiking trips and day hikes.

Take heart! Things are changing!

Someday soon, size inclusive hiking clothing will be a reality.

From every outdoor retailer.

Why do I make that prediction?

A few of the leading outdoor clothing brands, names like REI Co-op and Columbia, offer more plus sizes.

And there are women owned stores at the forefront of the movement, making good strides.

  • They know that a woman needs specific sized and technical details to fit right and perform well on a hike.

Keep reading as we name some names.

Looking for cool weather hiking clothing in your size for

fall and spring hikes?

Here's your guide!

Retailers who get it!

Don't waste any more time in frustration or anger as you shop for extended size outdoor clothing.

Instead, go straight to the outdoor gear companies who pay attention.

They have selections for all women hikers.

That includes those of us who are not served by the size range that most hiking clothes in the U.S. and Canada.

  • That seems to be up to size 14 or so.

Your feedback as a female hiker matters

Every time you visit their store or website, let them know that your needs exist.

And don't be shy about sending them feedback and posting reviews of their products.

Hitting the trail isn't a privilege for women "of a certain size", right?

  • Hiking clothes for plus size women needs to become the norm, not the exception.

REI Co-op is expanding their offerings
for female hikers all the time

REI Co-op continues to add options every season, most in the 1X to 3X range, and you can get an overview of their selection here.

More to love about REI: When you become a member (one time $20 fee), you receive a 10% rebate on your annual qualifying purchases.


  • Free shipping on lots of items
  • Excellent return and exchange policies
  • Member only sales and coupons

Read more about the REI Co-op member rewards here.

Now, let's zoom in for a closer look at examples of plus size womens outdoor clothing that work well on the trail.

Best plus size womens outdoor clothing:
hiking pants

Options from a trusted name:

Details at REI

Columbia makes hiking pants in sizes ranging from 16W to 24W.

Behold these Just Right Straight Leg Pants.

Non-convertible pants are great for hiking in any season.

The waist band is adjustable.

This fabric stands up to trail debris and mud.

Here's the thing about these pants: there's only one little zippered pocket.

Some women hikers don't like to clutter up pants with a lot of pockets, so if you're a pocket scoffer, these are for you!

Details at Amazon

Columbia also has another option in plus size womens outdoor clothing well worth a look:

These convertible pants feature lower legs that zip off fast to convert to shorts,

They are available in two different length options, and they're called the Saturday Trail pants. 

Take a look at these because they have:

  • UPF 50 sun protective fabric that dries fast
  • a bit of Elastane for good movement on the trail
  • one zip closure pocket
  • many color options

Details at Amazon

If you'd prefer knee length trail pants in this style, here they are!

REI Co-op for hiking clothing

REI Co-op Sahara Convertible Pants

These convertible pants have technical features you need:

  • moisture wicking and fast dry nylon fabric
  • UPF 30 protection against ultraviolet rays
  • waistband designed for comfortable bending and twisting motions
  • lots of pockets
  • fast conversion from pants to shorts

Available to size 26W.

Heading out on chilly trails in the fall?

You need more layers!

Here's your fall hiking clothing guide.

Works great for springtime hikes, too.

Here's a great choice in women's plus size rain pant, the ZeroDry GTX.

Lightweight, with articulated knees for freedom of movement as you step over mud holes in the trail.

Another choice:

These pants pack down small until you need them.

The elastic waistband with draw cord accommodates your clothing layering system.

The zippered leg vents mean you don't have to take off your boots to get these pants on when you feel the first rain drops.

Details at REI

L.L. Bean has been around a long time!

Women's Water-Repellent Comfort Trail Pants

These hiking pants have great features to customize your fit, including:

  • misses, petite and women's sizing (4 - 20)
  • variable inseams

Worthy trail features include:

  • fast drying nylon fabric with a bit of spandex stretchability
  • moisture wicking mesh in the waistband
  • gusseted crotch for freer movements
  • and lots of pockets :)

Trail tip:

  • Be sure your underwear makes friends with your hiking pants.

Get a few ideas for the best hiking underwear to wear under your pants and shorts here.

More extended size hiking clothing options
for less leg coverage

Would you rather hike in shorts?

  • Read this for ideas on how to size up, and locate, a comfortable pair of womens hiking shorts in your size.

Or take a look at this great example of plus size women's outdoor clothing:

  • a trailworthy pair of hiking shorts.

These Columbia Saturday Trail hiking shorts check all the boxes for a hiker:

  • Omni-Shield™ water-resistant fabric
  • Omni-Shade™ UPF 50+ sun protection shields you from harmful UV rays
  • 96% nylon/4% Elastane for comfort and free movement
  • enough coverage for your hard working legs

Another choice for you!

These shorts have a nice name, don't you think? Available in XS - 6X.

alder Take A Hike Shorts

Would you prefer leggings?

Sometimes it feels good to pull on a pair of cozy leggings.

You can head off down the trail, knowing that you have the stretchy fabric for full movement.

Plus, the coverage to keep you out of harm's way on the trail.

These high waisted leggings are available in sizes 1X - 3X.

4 color choices, too!

The fabric, 87% polyester, 13% Elastane, gives you both moisture wicking and flexibility.

Tapered legs make it easy to pull your hiking socks up over your ankles.

This keeps ticks at bay and debris out of your boots.

Details at Amazon

Best plus size
full coverage hiking shirts

This Sahara long sleeved shirt gives you stretchy fabric (nylon plus spandex).

It provides ventilation with quick dry underarm panels.

And the sleeve versatility? It protects you from biting insects, scratchy trail brush, and cool breezes.

Several color choices, so you can have one for every hiking season and then some.

This shirt is going to work hard for you on the trail, and look good, too.

Another plus size long sleeve
hiking shirt option for you

Columbia's extended sizing options to the rescue again!

Here's the Columbia Silver Ridge Lite Shirt.

This button front long sleeved shirt works on or off the trail, because it has good features:

  • UPF 40 sun protection
  • moisture wicking fabric that dries fast
  • vents so you can stay cool on the trail
  • a couple of well placed pockets
Details at REI

Base layer shirt options

Need a base layer for cool weather spring and fall hikes?

This SmartWool merino crew has long sleeves for coverage.

And its midweight makes a great addition to your clothing layering system.

It goes well with that Silver Ridge shirt above!

Details at REI

And another base layer choice to consider

32 Degrees is a company beginning to land on the radar for hiking women.


Due to their affordable price points and extended sizing.

Consider this long sleeve base layer shirt: ideal for cool weather day hiking, snowshoeing, and backpacking.

It features 90% polyester for wicking, 10% spandex for full range of motion, and lots of color choices!

Details at Amazon

Warm weather hiking shirt choices
in plus size womens outdoor clothing

When warm weather hiking trails beckon you, you want to stay as cool and dry as possible.

And you know you'll work up a sweat, gaining that view point or perfect campsite.

Here's a nice scoop neck hiking shirt option, REI Co-op's Sahara T shirt.

Love the soft moisture wicking fabric.

And it's a nice sleeve length for a summer hike.

In sizes 1X - 3X, three color choices.

REI Co-op Sahara T-Shirt - Women's Plus Sizes | REI Co-op $29.95
Details at REI

Plus size hiking skirts

Here's a comfortable pull on style that just might be your favorite hiking clothing this summer!

Adventure Skirt by PR Adventure Skirts

What lies beneath?
Plus size womens outdoor clothing:
supportive sports bras!

Need a supportive yet comfortable plus size sports bra under that shirt?

Of course you do! Who doesn't!

It takes a mighty effort to find the right sports bra for hiking.

Plus size womens
outdoor clothing take aways

You deserve high performance technical hiking clothing that fits and looks great.

Hopefully the ideas on this page will help you find it.

Just a few more ideas before you go...

1. Don't be discouraged if your size and fit is hard to find in hiking attire.

  • Your desire to hit the trail will motivate you to keep hunting for hiking clothing that works as hard as you do to get you to some great outdoor destinations.
Female hiker looking at Mt. RainierGet out there and climb that hill!

2. Start by looking at the styles and companies mentioned here, because lots of other hiking women have recommended them.

3. Look at Juno for a full line of womens active wear in your size, too.

4. Check out Alder Apparel, with outdoor clothing in sizes up to 4x.

5. AlpineParrot has hiking pants to fit real hiking women!

6. If you're petite and plus size, read my tips for the best womens petite hiking pants with extended sizing.

I've gathered lots more extended size hiking clothing options for you here, too.

Happy trails to you!

You might like to read these next!

Home page > Best Hiking Gear >

Best Plus Size Womens Hiking Outfits

About the author

Female hiker with backpack resting one hand on a boulder while resting in a talus pile

Diane is the founder of Hiking For Her.

She’s been on a hiking trail somewhere in the world for nearly five decades, and loves to share her best hiking tips right here.

Would you like to support Hiking For Her's mission to get women of all ages, sizes and abilities onto hiking trails?

Purchase your outdoor clothing through the links on this page, and a small amount of money flows into HFH's coffers to keep the hiking tips flowing freely to you.

Best part? It costs you nothing extra :)

Thank you!