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Lightweight Pants ?
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Jacob D
(JacobD) - F

Locale: North Bay
Lightweight Pants ? on 03/13/2011 16:50:15 MDT Print View

Hi all. I think I need to make some changes to my current pants options. I have been using the following:

- Prana stretch Zion pants
- REI Ultralight rain pants

The Prana's are more of a climber's pant although I don't really climb. I have had a few pairs of these for years. Very durable, breathable, dry quickly, and look decent enough to wear into town. Unfortunately they're 14 oz. The REI's I picked up on clearance and they're fine in the rain but I don't care for them as my primary hiking pants.

Winter time is pretty much the only time I wear pants, occasionally in bug season. I don't do much bush whacking but need something durable enough that I won't wear the seat out from sitting on granite etc.

Can anyone recommend either A) replacement for the Prana's or B) one pair of pants to
replace both the Prana's and REI's?

While we're at it, what are some of your favorite shorts?

Aaron Reichow

Locale: Northern Minnesota
Re: Lightweight Pants ? on 03/13/2011 21:09:31 MDT Print View

I like the Mountain Hardwear Canyon and Mesa pants. The Mesa is very similar, and made of the same fabric, but with a more khaki look. I like the new Mesa, which doesn't have any big cargo pockets, something last year's Mesa and many other hiking pants had.

I don't often wear shorts, and I don't like convertibles. I did buy a pair of shorts for this summer- the MH Canyon short. Same material and sizing, with an imported pocket configuration compared to my Canyon pants from 2007-08.

I don't bring heavy rain pants. I often don't bring any, but when I do, I just bring DriDucks, which are very light and cheap.

Ryan C
(radio_guy) - MLife

Locale: Alaska
Re: Lightweight Pants ? on 03/13/2011 21:32:44 MDT Print View

1+ on the Mountain Hardwear Mesa pants. Although mine are convertible, I still love them. Much lighter than the NF pants I used in the past and are more comfortable.

Steven Paris
(saparisor) - M

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Lightweight Pants ? on 03/13/2011 21:56:33 MDT Print View

Have a look at the Arc'Teryx Rampart pants. Mine weigh around 9 oz, which is about as light as I think you'll find for most lightweight pants, unless you go to a running pant or the BPL Thorofare pants.

Edited by saparisor on 03/14/2011 08:25:45 MDT.

Andrew F
(andrew.f) - F

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Lightweight Pants ? on 03/13/2011 22:21:03 MDT Print View

I have the Prana Zion. They are nice for climbing in, but aren't really up to par in terms of the fabric with some of the other options floating around. I would recommend the Arcteryx Rampart or Patagonia Rock Guide pants. Both are very fast drying, breathe well, are mostly windproof, and have good DWR to shed some light rain. Or the Arcteryx Palisade if you want an integrated belt for a bit more $$. I have all 3 and rotate between them for hiking. They all weigh about 9-10 oz.


eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F
deadus birdus on 03/13/2011 22:28:48 MDT Print View

gamma lts, palisades, ramparts, or the equivalent patagucci rock guides/simple guides ...

the gamma lts and the pataguccis guides are quite durable, being softshell made for rock climbing

the palisades/ramparts are very breathable

Aaron Reichow

Locale: Northern Minnesota
Re: deadus birdus on 03/13/2011 22:38:12 MDT Print View

I'd second the Gamma LTs for fall and winter as well as year round use in non-sunny climes, but I think I'd roast in them for spring and sumner. if they came in something other than black and almost black I could see using them year round.

Jacob D
(JacobD) - F

Locale: North Bay
Re: Lightweight Pants ? on 03/13/2011 23:07:59 MDT Print View

Thanks everybody for the suggestions.

Andrew (or anyone else) can you comment on which of these would be the most similar in fit to the Prana pants?

Chris W
(simplespirit) - MLife

Locale: .
Re: Re: Lightweight Pants ? on 03/14/2011 03:48:33 MDT Print View

I have Stretch Zions (casual wear only) and the Paty Simple Guide (winter go-to pant). The Simple Guide is a more slender fit and much more true to size. Everything Prana makes runs large (like most every other company that caters to a US market) to some degree and so do all of Patagonia's upper layers. For some reason Patagonia's pants are mostly sized correctly.

Mike M
(mtwarden) - MLife

Locale: Montana
Rock Guide on 03/14/2011 08:03:24 MDT Print View

I purchased some Rock Guides earlier in the year to use snowshoeing, for which they work great- so great that they will see "summer" duty as well- fit well, have decent stretch, good DWR finish and at 11 oz for size 34" pretty darn light

they make them in a convertible as well (not my preference)

Andrew F
(andrew.f) - F

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Pants on 03/14/2011 10:09:12 MDT Print View

All the pants mentioned will be slightly more fitted than the Zion. I found the Zion to fit well in the waist, but are slightly baggy everywhere else, presumably since they are intended for climbers. The Pata Guide pants are very stretchy, and the Arcteryx pants are extremely well tailored and articulated, so neither are constricting.

I prefer the Palisades for backpacking, since they have an integrated belt. Otherwise, a belt can rub under the waistbelt of my pack.


Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Lightweight Pants ? on 03/14/2011 10:34:40 MDT Print View

The lighter soft shell pants are great for winter/shoulder season hiking, but around 12oz seems to be the basement and the winter-weight ones creep over a pound. There are a lot of running pants that are great for hiking and can hit the 6oz mark, but are pretty thin for winter stuff. Wind pants like Montane's are SUL (4oz or so), but very fragile, IMHO. I wear some sort of zip offs for most 3 season use.

Running shorts are SUL, and easy to find. I think Andrew Skurka lives in running shorts, supplanted by wind pants or light rain pants. Ex-Officio Amphi Shorts are in my locker, as well as REI Sahara shorts.