It’s highly essential to have ideal hiking pants that fit you properly. You will be strolling, jumping, and climbing in them for a long time, hence, they have to be unrestrictive and quite convenient.
You don’t have to even feel them on you unless you’re looking for something that will endure the outdoor condition and compliment your activity.
A dependable pair of hiking pants is a must-have item on the equipment list of every outdoor enthusiast. However, deciding which pants are a better fit for the activities you have scheduled can be a difficult task.
They need to be resistant, compact, and convenient in nearly every condition. Your legs are your mode of transportation on the hike, and a solid pair of hiking pants will keep them protected from the environment as well as from chafing.
Fortunately, there are a few incredibly fantastic manufacturers out there that have designed hiking pants with all of these aspects in consideration.
As a result, there is a superb variety of hiking pants that are ideal for a number of traveling situations and appeal to a multitude of shape and comfort requirements.
So, to make this situation much simpler for you, we have selected 5 of the best hiking pants on the market for you to think about investing your hiking activities in.
So, let’s get started!
What to Look For in An Ideal Pair of Hiking Pants
When looking for the best hiking pants, the most essential factor that should be considered is comfort.
The pants can be as practically flawless as fantastic hiking pants can get, but if they are uncomfortable, all of the expertise will be for nothing.
When hiking or traveling, it’s highly essential to keep your weight as low as possible.
Through most of our three-season journeys, we like compact gear that folds up easily, but a thicker pair of hiking pants are better suited for difficult terrain and cold conditions.
Nylon is the most popular fabric for hiking pants due to its high reliability and damage-resistant properties. In addition, nylon dries quickly and wicks away moisture.
Although, certain hiking pants are formed using polyester rather than nylon. Polyester is comparable to nylon in features but is less durable.
4. Form Fitting
The ideal hiking pants have to fit your body comfortably without being too narrow or too loose. If your hiking pants are absurdly large, unwanted materials flopping over can be extremely irritating.
Tight hiking pants, on the other hand, will not only be unpleasant and restricting to walk in, but they will also end up causing scorching and irritation.
An ideal pair of hiking pants should have a slight element of elasticity in them. Look for pants that include spandex or elastane in their fabric.
6. Articulated knees
Having hiking pants that resemble the actual anatomic form of your legs will definitely increase your comfort.
It’s notably useful for kneeling and squatting while camping, but it also comes in handy when climbing and hiking in mountain ranges.
7. Gusseted Crotch
This additional piece of fabric sewed into the groin area avoids all four stitches from merging along in the same place.
This form provides for increased comfort and much less stiffness, while also enhancing the longevity of the hiking pants by distributing the strain on the seams.
Pockets enable you to easily reach and keep small things that you want to frequently use. As a result, a good pair of hiking pants should contain multiple pockets.
The pockets have to be easy to reach and large enough (or zipped) to keep things from slipping out during your hiking journey.
9. Integrated Belt
Certain hiking pants come with a belt that is integrated into the waistband. An integrated belt is often fairly thin, so it will not obstruct your mobility when hiking.
This type of belt is highly beneficial while carrying a bag as it integrates comfortably below the waistline.
A completely detachable belt is a better option for additional flexibility, particularly when climbing on rough terrains or while carrying a large and hefty backpack.
10. Odd Weather Conditions
Plenty of the top hiking pants includes a durable water-resistant (DWR) covering, which ensures that they won’t soak up water under mild rain. Some would be wind-resistant as well, which will highly boost their capabilities to keep you comfortable.
Waterproof overpants are meant to be worn over hiking pants and can also be an excellent alternative if you’re going hiking on damp or muddy terrains.
11. Cuffs with Zips
Certain hiking pants include zips on the bottom cuffs for making it easy to remove them while still wearing your boots.
This is a fantastic alternative if you prefer light trousers or hiking shorts over adjustable hiking pants.
1. Arcteryx Lefroy Women’s Hiking Pants
• Material: 88% nylon, 12% elastane
• Weight: 11.8 oz
The Arc’teryx Lefroy Women’s Hiking Pants are one of the lightest and least bulky hiking pants that we have reviewed. The Lefroy Pants also include an integrated belt and a simple pocket style, which we liked a lot.
The remarkable compactness, resilience, and stretchy fabrics of these lightweight hiking pants make them unique and highly comfortable for women.
Its form is loose but not baggy, making it comfortable and simple to walk around without feeling as if you’re dragging a tent.
It comes with a zipped thigh pocket, two fabric-lined hand pockets, and a front flap with snap and zip closing. We prefer a basic pocket layout, however certain individuals can be put off by the absence of rear pockets on these hiking pants.
We used it all the time for nine days in the mountains while hiking, making the camp, purifying water, preparing to cook, and resting. It still looked brand new when we got back from the trip.
Furthermore, the Arc’teryx Lefroy Pants’ top-grade breathable fabric is highly stretchable to wear easily over warm pants on winter nights while still retaining its form throughout of it.
We also observed that the metallic fastening on the inbuilt belt can induce a little bit of irritation below the hip belt of a backpack, but this is unlikely to be an issue for everybody.
The only drawback is that these are a tad more expensive than the other hiking pants in this article. For most three-season hiking journeys, you can invest a bit less and will be equally satisfied with the results.
All in all, the Arc’teryx Lefroy is not an all-rounder pant like our best recommendations but it’s a fantastic alternative for mountain trips whenever you want an extra layer of durability and protection from harsh environments without any extra bulk.
• Hiking ready form
• Decent integrated belt
• Highly comfortable
• Solid durability
• No rear pockets
• Relatively expensive
• Metal fastening can cause irritation
2. Columbia Silver Ridge Convertible Pants
• Material: 100% nylon, polyester mesh panels
• Weight: 12.6 oz
The Columbia Silver Ridge Convertible Pants are an excellent choice for moderate outdoor traveling or summer hiking for men.
These hiking pants are so versatile, and we liked how lightweight the material feels. They are sold at a fair 60 dollars price and are also usually obtainable for much less on Amazon.
They work well enough with breezy and quick-drying materials which also makes them highly appealing to frequent tourists and travelers.
As they are adjustable, which means their legs can snap away and the pants will be simply converted into shorts.
You will also have plenty of storage space with two spacious and easily reachable pockets and one zipped safety pocket.
What are the Columbia Silver Ridge’s drawbacks? Although, being quite well-built for this budget, the fabrics are somewhat thinner and do not offer that much shielding from the weather when compared to the more premium alternatives in this list.
Furthermore, the zippers are not the best we have experienced, and putting the legs down on requires some delicacy.
Overall, the form is too baggy for us since we like a more streamlined style for extensive days on the route.
However, it’s difficult to disagree with Silver Ridge’s low pricing or a wide range of size and color choices, that’s why we have listed it in this article.
The functionality and convenience of these hiking pants have highly impressed us. These hiking pants are also offered in Silver Ridge Cargo for individuals that don’t want or desire the zip-off features.
Ultimately, the Columbia Silver Ridge Convertible Pants are just as superb as any other hiking pants on the market, but at a much lower cost as compared to many of the competing premium companies.
These hiking pants are good in terms of durability, mobility, and affordability but it doesn’t have a women’s version which is a bit of a bummer.
• Surprisingly Inexpensive
• Features a lot of pockets
• Decent integrated belt
• Solid build
• Highly breathable
• A bit tight on the quadriceps
• The form is baggy
• Its adjustable zipper gives the shorts an odd appearance
3. Montane Terra Pants
• Material: Nylon with stretch
• Weight: 12 oz
The Montane Terra Pants are lightweight and breathable, making them an awesome choice for a vast array of adventures. Due to their wind and water tolerance, they are an ideal option for wet and cold weather trips, specifically for women.
They also include a strap at their ankle, therefore, if the sun breaks out and the temperature goes up, you can easily pull these up to maintain your temperature.
Its unique Vector Lite material is primarily responsible for the light 12 ounces of weight which vents good enough and provides impressive mobility for climbing and squatting to capture beautiful shots.
These hiking pants also offer some of the most versatile fitting methods, with a stretchy waistband, a snap and button fastening, a detachable belt, and more.
The Montane Terra Pants, with their athletic shape and articulated knees, rank well in hiking convenience for individuals who move quickly and lightly.
The Terra Pants are among the most breathable and compact hiking pants in this article, thanks to their light fabric. However, we were highly impressed by its mobility and endurance as well.
Despite a lengthy hike across harsh environments, these hiking pants displayed no marks of degradation, and their DWR covering prevented mild rain and snow from getting soaked.
The button fastening down the legs, which broke off only six days into the hiking journey, was one thing that we didn’t like.
It was a disappointment as we liked how we could shorten the bottom hemline and fasten it over our boots.
With the exception of the durability issue, we consider the Terra Pants as a good and pretty light solution for your hiking and traveling adventures.
• Highly durable
• Lightweight and compact
• Easily portable
• Good form-fitting
• Integrated belt
• Slightly expensive
• Extra care is needed when washing
• Can be rather niche-based for a few people
4. Outdoor Research Ferrosi Pants
• Material: 86% nylon, 14% spandex
• Weight: 12.5 oz
Founded in Seattle, Outdoor Research (OR) knows a lot about harsh circumstances, so it’s not surprising that the Ferrosi is among our top picks for hiking pants.
The OR Ferrosi Pants are highly convenient, provide a fantastic level of movement, and make you feel relaxed even when the temperature increases.
They are also exceptionally light which is a big plus for hiking trips and outdoor travel where even a single ounce counts.
Even though it’s light in weight, the Ferrosi’s strong tear-resistant fabric has a higher than usual 14 percent spandex content and a semi-trim shape which allows it to be more flexible as well as unrestrictive.
The Ferrosis drawstring strands at the ankles enable you to adjust the length of these hiking pants to your comfort, the environment, or the various outdoor terrains.
Furthermore, its fabric is ideal for thermal controls: it’s highly robust to resist the wind and absorb light water yet it dries fast and vents when the temperature begins to rise.
It’s important to mention that the OR Ferrosi awhile back had a little bit of tweaking, with horizontal zippers on its thigh pockets but no zippers on the back pockets. However, the strategy for success has remained mainly intact for a long time.
According to our testings, the OR Ferrosi and Prana Stretch Zion hiking pants mentioned here are two of the most ideal hiking pants for three-season circumstances.
If you just want to wear these hiking pants mainly on the secure route, The OR Ferrosis Pants get our approval due to their enhanced airflow and lightweight.
However, if you’re looking for multipurpose hiking pants that can be easily worn around your city or for occasional outdoor trips, the Prana Stretch Zion is an excellent and more convenient alternative.
In addition, the OR Ferrosi is more straightforward: we wanted to see an integrated belt or waist adjuster just like the Prana Stretch Zion, and its pockets are on the smaller end.
Ultimately, the Outdoor Research Ferrosi Pants is one of our all-time top choices for both men and women for exploring the wilderness in style.
• Highly breathable
• Provides better movement
• Stretchable fabric
• Ideal for extended hiking trips
• A little thin for chilly and windy days
• Itz waist expands with frequent use
• 5. prAna Stretch Zion Pants
• Material: 97% nylon, 3% spandex
• Weight: 13.6 oz
The prAna Stretch Zion Pants have long been such a darling for both men and women travelers and hikers, due to their dynamic flexibility and sturdiness.
We have examined a vast variety of hiking pants over the years, and it will be very difficult for you to locate a better mix of durability and efficiency than these hiking pants. It also acts as an amazing pair of climbing pants.
You will also get terrific freedom of movement due to its stretchable fabric. We highly appreciate that it comes with an integrated belt and a semi-slim design that glides with you.
The Stretch Zion boasts a zipped cargo pocket for storing, buckles for wrapping up the sides, and a minimal waistband adjuster on the right of its top button.
Regarding its aspects, the Stretch Zion boasts a zipped cargo pocket for storing small items, buckles for wrapping up the legs from its sides, and a low waistband adjuster on the right side of its top button.
That being said, if you want a robust combo of all-in-one hiking pants and also prefer the traditional hiking style, these will be a fantastic pick for you.
The nylon fabric has a DWR finish and is a little more efficient than a few of the other hiking pants in our article, nearly reflecting a breathable softshell.
The prAna Stretch Zion’s only major flaw is that they are too hot to wear in the summer. Due to its extra thickness, they get a bit hotter while camping and hiking in the summer.
On the other hand, the outer material is highly strong and can easily withstand various types of weather conditions and harsh environments.
All in all, the prAna Stretch Zion is a complete solution for hiking pants that also looks pretty nice and outperforms almost all other hiking pants
• Reliable pockets
• Solid Integrated belt
• Highly Comfortable and durable
• Exceptionally stretchable
• We found it a bit loose
• Gets warm in the hot environment
• Not that breathable in summer
Frequently Asked Questions About Hiking Pants
1. Should I go hiking in jeans?
Jeans are also not suitable for hiking as they are constrictive, thick, soak plenty of moisture, and dry very slowly.
Pants that dry quickly are essential for hiking because wet pants cause irritation and transmit heat a lot more than dry pants, which means you will get cold quickly if you wear them.
2. Should I go hiking in cotton?
Cotton pants are not appropriate for hiking and outdoor activities as they soak plenty of moisture and hence dry slowly.
Wet pants not only cause irritation and chafing, but they also absorb heat way quicker than dry garments. As a result, if you wear damp garments, your temperature will soon increase.
3. Are shorts appropriate for hiking?
Shorts are appropriate for hiking, but just on fairly well enough and physically easy-going paths where safety from plants, rocks, and hills are not needed.
4. Is it a good idea to buy waterproof hiking pants?
Typical hiking pants aren’t waterproof since clothes that are waterproof don’t breathe as well when compared to non-waterproof clothes, so it’s not a good idea.
It’s highly essential for you to wear breathable pants when hiking, or else, you will be soaked in your own sweat.
Waterproof hiking pants, on the other hand, are usable but they are typically dressed on normal pants or just when the situation calls for it, like in strong rain or heavy winds.
The pants you put on can drastically affect how much fun you have on your outdoor journeys.
With a lot of choices in the market, selecting the correct pair of hiking pants under a specific range can be difficult, that’s why we have initiated all of the groundwork and research for you here.
We also got a few unexpected excellent pants that became our personal favorites. As a result, we are looking forward to using these hiking pants in all of our wilderness activities this spring and summer.
Although, we hope that our detailed analysis helps you in deciding on your new pair of hiking pants. Be certain that these are top-grade pants that are made by renowned brands and embrace anything the path has in store for you.