Apparently summer is ending

Which means that cold weather, layers, and the best drinks that Starbucks makes ever are coming back. I for one hate the cold. It disgusts me. Breathing in winter air is like shoving a million tiny razors through your nasal passages, into your throat, and down your windpipe; in short, the cold is pure agony to me, which is why I try my hardest to keep it away from as much skin as I possibly can.

I do not have a good set of winter gear, so this year I'm getting prepared ahead of time (a bit late in my opinion, but better late than never). The best part about it not being winter or right before winter is that prices are still low. The best time to buy winter items is actually right as show season is beginning; if you get most of your gear from Dover, I highly suggest that you look at the closeouts and coupons in the catalog around April/May.

I actually took my business to Equestrian Collections again since I want to make use of that points system (although I think I'll get a pair of those Horze Ear Muffs 'cause they look cool and are a nice low price). The only reason this happened was because SSTack no longer has the Ariat Jena Boot—the shoe that I have drooled over for almost a month now—in my size, so I looked elsewhere, but with my boot size also came another $60 to pay. Urgh! I let go of my dream boot, but I still picked out a pair of Ariats, the Brossard Paddock Boot. I threw in a pair of TuffRider Winter Breeches, Horseware Socks, and Horze Gloves to get free shipping and use a coupon that I got for being on the mailing list. Everything is about $205 altogether, and I'll do reviews for it all once winter sets in, and everything is put to the test.

That, however, is not what this post is about. If you are still looking for items to get you through winter, fear not, I am here for you. I've tried to include various items in the low (<$100), mid-range ($100-$300), and high-end (>$300) price ranges, but feel free to suggest items in the comments!

Riding Boots
Ovation Dafna Blizzard Boot ($35)
Horze Thermo Tall Boot ($50)
Solstice Winter Paddock Boot ($100)
Ariat Camrose Boot ($130)
Mountain Horse Stella Polaris Boot ($200)
Ariat Bromont Tall Boot ($300)

Work Boots (that you can maybe ride in, but I don't suggest it)
Mountain Horse Eclipse Boot ($90)
Noble Outfitters Mud Boot ($100)
Ovation Caelin Country Boots ($162)
Dublin River Boot ($190)
Dublin Pinnacle Boot ($190)
Mountain Horse Forest Highlander ($270)

Ovation Extreme Snow Glove (~$15)
Horze 3 Finger Padded Riding Mittens ($18)
Noble Outfitters Perfect Fit 3 Season Glove ($20)
Heritage Ladies Suede Glove ($24)
RSL ISO Winter Riding Glove ($25)
Heritage Extreme Winter Glove ($38)

SmartPak Winter Knee Patch Pull-On Tights ($75)
Ariat Artemis Full Seat Winter Tight ($100)
Kerrits PowerStretch Winter Full Seat Tight ($95)
Irideon PowerStretch Riding Tights ($105)
Horze Grand Prix Thermo Breeches ($139)
FITS All Season Duet Full Seat Breeches ($270)

Shirts & Jackets
Personally, I wouldn't order a jacket or shirt from equestrian oriented stores. Under Armor, The North Face, Columbia, and nearly every athletic brand of clothing sells winter gear that will work for you, and the prices don't change dramatically throughout the year. If you live out in the middle of nowhere, then go ahead and order online (Under Armour, The North Face, Columbia, Target, Adidas, Nike), but you're better off going to a store such as Dicks, Gander Mountain, Marshalls, and, yes, even WalMart.

TuffRider Arygle Winter Sock ($6)
TuffRider Thermal Riding Sock ($8)
Horze Tiana Woolmiix Lace Knee Socks ($9)
Noble Mount Fleece Lined Tights ($12)
Under Armour Women's Tiny Stripes Snowsports Sock ($16)
Smartwool Women's Basic Knee High Sock ($22)

Hand Warmers ($2)
Chamonix Knitted Deer Stalker Hat ($10)
Irideon Chinchilaaah Neckerchief ($13)
Heat Pack Warmers ($14)
Pikeur Classes Headband ($29)
Rain Overtrousers ($90)

Outside of our own apparel, the pon pons can also stay toasty. Consider quarter sheets, which are especially useful at winter shows, and also find ways to make sure that water buckets and troughs don't freeze. Keep bits warm with a bit warmer as cold bits aren't enjoyable. For environments too cold for the horse in question, turnout blankets are a must. They also might keep your horse cleaner, assuming your equine friend doesn't decide to murder the blanket within the first week.

I hope this helps you get together everything you need for your winter endeavors!


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