Best Trail Running Caps For 2024 | Hiking and Trail Running Headwear For Sun Protection And Moisture Wicking - Outdoors Magic

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Best Trail Running Caps For 2024 | Hiking and Trail Running Headwear For Sun Protection And Moisture Wicking

Protect yourself from the sun with our pick of the best hiking and trail running caps – with options from £16 to £32

Keeping your head (and neck) covered with a trail running cap can be vital for surviving hours on sun cooked trails. They also serve purposes beyond just shelter from the sun, with the best trail running caps also able to wick sweat away from your head and capable of protecting you from any light rain as well. 

Because of the active nature of trail running, airflow is a vital feature for trail running caps – it’s important to consider how breathable the cap will be when it’s cooking outside and you’re hours from the finish line.

Cap vs Visor

The most obvious thing separating some of the trail running headwear we’ve featured below is that some are hats and some are visors. To put it simply, visors offer the bare minimal sun protection with a simple headband and peak, while trail running caps offer a covered crown for full protection.

Related: Best Running Shorts
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Visors still provide sun and sweat protection for your eyes however. And, thanks to the open top, they offer optimal airflow for those who tend to run a little warmer, or perhaps typically run in warmer climates. By and large, visors are also more packable and lighter in weight than caps, with many small enough to scrunch into one of the pockets on your jacket or shorts.

Looking for more running gear? We’ve also compiled similar guides to the best running socks and the best trail running shoes, plus there’s also our guide to the best new running brands.

Buff Pro Run Hat

Price: £24
Weight: 39g

Buff are perhaps best known for their protective neck tubes, but they do also make a great range of trail running hats. This, the Buff Pro Run Hat features a streamlined design, with stretchy mesh to promote airflow across the head.

Eagle eyed readers would’ve noticed that Spanish trail runner Pau Capell was sporting a Buff Pro Run Hat during his attempt to break the 20-hour barrier across the UTMB trail. If that’s not a worthy certification, then we’re not quite sure what is.



Ciele GoCap

Price: £35
Weight: 62g

It’s fair to say that Montreal-based Ciele Athletics have blown up in recent years and it’s all largely thanks to their extremely well-designed and unapologetically fashionable designs. The Ciele GoCap is the original trail running cap from Ciele, featuring UPF +40 UV protection with plenty of mesh fabric built in to keep you cool in warmer climes.



Adidas Terrex Aeoready Five-Panel Graphic Trail

Price: £25
Weight: 80g

If optimal airflow, adjustability and flexibility comes at the top of your trail running cap buying choices, then you can’t go wrong with the Adidas Terrex Aeroready Five-Panel. With loads of unique colour options and 90% recycled materials, the Aeroready cap features a moisture-wicking, adjustable headband, as well as targeted mesh zones throughout. There’s also a firm brim that provides more than adequate protection from the sun, and a brushed interior with flat-lying seams that reduce the risk of chafing against your head. 


Montane GR Sun Cap

Price: £25
Weight: 55g

The Montane GR Sun Cap features a split foldable peak, which means that it can be packed away flat into its own stash pocket. The 55 gram weight ensures it doesn’t add too much to your final pack size when not in use.

When in use, the hat brings UPF 50+ sun protection and anti-odour and moisture wicking properties that combine to make it an ideal partner on sunny days in the hills.


Fractel Calypso

Price: £30
Weight: 59g

The people behind Fractel set up their brand with the stated ambition of “creating the world’s best headwear using our own experience and passion, in a style that promotes adventure”. With each of their trail running hat designs featuring a whole new design from the last, the company have built up a varied range of colourful trail running hats. 

The Fractel Calypso features a UPF +50 sun protection, mesh venting across the main body of the hay and a built in sweat absorbing headband. Top top things off, Fractal are a member of 1% For The Planet, meaning at least 1% of the company’s profits goes towards environmental causes.


On Lightweight Running Cap

Price: £32
Weight: N/A

This is top quality and we wouldn’t expect anything less from Switzerland-based On. Their Lightweight Running Cap features an extremely streamlined design that carries a good level of protection with minimal weight penalty.

Made from tear proof fabrics, and featuring ultra-soft sweatbands and laser cut ventilation holes, the On Lightweight Running Cap is more than capable of keeping you comfortable over long miles on the trail. 



Patagonia Duckbill Cap

Price: £25
Weight: 43g

The Patagonia Duckbill Cap was developed following a request from Patagonia’s ultrarunning ambassadors to create a breathable trail running hat to serve their needs. Featuring an almost fully mesh build, the Duckbill Cap certainly isn’t short of ventilation.

And of course, being a Patagonia product, the Duckbill Cap is eco-friendly, using a lightweight 100% recycled nylon that’s sewn together by Fair Trade Certified fabrics.


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