Forum Index » GEAR » Long pants or shorts in hot weather??


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Packman Pete
(packmanpete) - MLife

Locale: Rainy Portland
Long pants or shorts in hot weather?? on 05/30/2013 10:46:33 MDT Print View

I'm prepping for a long hike in August. I normally wear shorts, but some think long pants keep them cooler. I am not asking which is better (I live in shorts), but how can you consider pants to keep cool? Is it shade or sweat or what? I don't understand.

Stephen Barber
(grampa) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
re: Long pants or shorts in hot weather?? on 05/30/2013 10:51:31 MDT Print View

I live in not rainy SoCal, and wear shorts all summer and then some. But when I get up to high altitude, I tend to wear long pants and sleeves to avoid the increased UV rays.

Richard Reno
(scubahhh) - M

Locale: White Mountains, mostly.
Kilt. on 05/30/2013 10:59:41 MDT Print View

Think wind chill, only different ;-)

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: west coast best coast
Re: Long pants or shorts in hot weather?? on 05/30/2013 11:08:43 MDT Print View

When you are in direct sunlight, wearing clothing shields your skin from the sun and keeps you cooler. So pants aren't going to be any warmer than shorts. You will see most desert hikers wearing long sleeves and pants.

If you are hiking under shade all day, shorts and short sleeves will be cooler. Also wet shorts are also a lot more tolerable than wet pants.

Barry P
(BarryP) - F

Locale: Eastern Idaho (moved from Midwest)
Re: Long pants or shorts in hot weather?? on 05/30/2013 12:38:56 MDT Print View

“…but how can you consider pants to keep cool?”

I’m always cooler in shorts; probably because my sweat evaporates faster that way. So if I’m burning up, out come the shorts!

-Barry
-The mountains were made for Tevas

Steven Paris
(saparisor) - M

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Long pants or shorts in hot weather?? on 05/30/2013 12:50:09 MDT Print View

I think this is why a lot of people like convertible pants. I'm not a fan, however, and often hike in thin long pants. If it gets warm, I roll them up to just below the knee. This seems to be almost as good as shorts. I wear ArcTeryx Rampart Pants and the fabric is thin but stays rolled up well.

Sean Passanisi
(passanis)
Pants on 05/30/2013 12:58:27 MDT Print View

Based on feedback on BPL, I recently purchased Patagonia Rock Guide pants after using shorts exclusively. They protect me from the sun, bugs, poison oak, etc. and I can easily roll them if I'm too warm.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Re: Long pants or shorts in hot weather?? on 05/30/2013 13:12:30 MDT Print View

"You will see most desert hikers wearing long sleeves and pants."

Not exactly true. I don't wear long sleeves and pants unless the temp is over 110F or under 50F.

Packman Pete
(packmanpete) - MLife

Locale: Rainy Portland
Re: Re: Re: Long pants or shorts in hot weather?? on 05/30/2013 13:59:33 MDT Print View

If I was hiking in 110 degree weather I would turn into a puddle on the ground, long pants or not.

Adam Rothermich
(aroth87) - F

Locale: Missouri Ozarks
Re: Long pants or shorts in hot weather?? on 05/30/2013 15:07:55 MDT Print View

I've taken to wearing long pants even though we've got high heat, high humidity, and lots of shade. But they do provide another barrier to ticks. I'm glad I opted for pants last weekend, it was only in the 70's but the ticks were out in droves. Between me and my hiking partner I wouldn't be surprised if we picked over 100 off of us, most were just crawling on our clothes but I picked off about six that made it to skin, he had closer to a dozen. We had both treated our clothes with permethrin plus we put on some bug repellent at the trailhead. Pants also protect your legs from cuts if you hike on overgrown trail or bushwhack. I'd prefer to wear shorts when its hot though, I've never thought I was cooler in pants.

Adam