Integral Designs eVENT Shortie Gaiters SPOTLITE REVIEW

Elegant in their simplicity and functionality, they’re like putting your socks on in the morning.

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by Will Rietveld and Janet Reichl | 2006-09-10 03:00:00-06

Overview

The Integral Designs eVENT Shortie Gaiters, as the name implies, are made of eVENT fabric. They are remarkably light, breathable, and durable. They are also remarkably simple - there is no zipper or Velcro, so you must slip them on before you put your boots on. At only 2.4 or 2.5 ounces per pair for the two sizes available, these gaiters are also in the ultralight league.

Integral Designs eVENT Shortie Gaiters SPOTLITE REVIEW - 1
The Integral Designs Shortie Gaiters are made of highly breathable eVENT fabric, and have a supplex nylon reinforcement on the inner ankles. They stay up well when you wear them with long pants, but scrunch down more when you wear them with shorts (like the left one in the photo).

We wore the Shortie Gaiters over a variety of footwear for snow and trail, and were impressed with their fit and performance. The lack of a zipper or Velcro closure was no problem; it was nice NOT to have to fiddle with closing a zipper or detaching Velcro. We put them on in the morning and left them on all day, even in hot weather, no problem with them getting too hot or clammy.

We found the Shortie Gaiters to be well designed for their purpose. There is no stretch, but the front hem is tapered to provide a larger bottom opening. They fit well over a variety of footwear, but not quite as well as the OR Flex-Tex gaiters (which have a lot of stretch). They adequately covered the tops of trail runners, and with the underfoot cords holding them down they effectively kept out snow and debris.

Integral Designs eVENT Shortie Gaiters SPOTLITE REVIEW - 2
The Shortie Gaiters barely covered the top of trail runners, but were still effective for keeping snow and debris out. For low cut shoes, it’s important to tighten up the underfoot cords to hold the gaiters down.

As with most gaiters, their beauty is providing some ankle and shin protection, plus preventing snow and debris from getting into your shoes/boots. Because of their lightweight and breathability, it was easy for us to forget that we had them on. It was like putting on our socks in the morning and wearing them all day.

Besides being very breathable, the eVENT fabric is also waterproof. However, like any waterproof/breathable fabric, the surface DWR finish eventually disappears and the fabric wets through. With the Shortie Gaiters it took several months of use and repeated washings to lose their waterproofness, so their DWR finish is pretty decent. On a recent 6-day backpack in continuous wet weather, we discovered that the gaiters were no longer waterproof. When we got home we washed them then sprayed them with Nikwax TX Direct to restore their DWR finish.

The elastic cord and cordlock in the top hem worked well to hold the gaiters up. They stayed up over pants very well, with some sag created by ankle flex. When we wore them with hiking shorts, they tended to slide down a little more, but it was not a problem. We had no problems with the elastic cord cutting off leg circulation.

Although the seams are not taped on the inside, the Shortie Gaiters are functionally waterproof. They helped to keep our boots dry on stream crossings. We simply planed our route then quickly splashed through. Our boots stayed dry for the most part, since water did not come in from the top.

The Shortie Gaiters are also suitable for bushwhacking. Will put them through a lot of hard use on his off-trail explorations and they held up very well, with no seams coming apart, no punctures, and very few abrasions. ID notes that the underfoot cords are “replaceable”, and that is exactly the process. They definitely wear through in rocky terrain and require frequent replacement.

Overall the ID Shortie Gaiters are elegant in their simplicity and functionality, and are a good choice to complement high performance footwear in a variety of endeavors.

Specifications and Features

  • Manufacturer: Integral Designs (www.integraldesigns.com)
  • Sizes: Small/Medium fits 4-9, Large/XL fits 9-12
  • Height: Size S/M is 8 in (20 cm) high, size L/XL is 9 in (23 cm) high
  • Colors: Dark green or yellow
  • Fabric: eVENT Storm 3L is a 3.1 oz/yd2 (105 g/m2)triple grid ripstop waterproof breathable fabric with tricot backing, 100% nylon
  • Features: Elastic underfoot cord, inside of ankles are reinforced with black supplex nylon, top elastic drawcord and cordlock, front lace hook
  • Weight: Measured weight size S/M 2.4 oz/pair (68 g), size L/XL 2.5 oz/pair (70 g); manufacturer specification 2.5 oz (70 g) per pair
  • MSRP: $25

Citation

"Integral Designs eVENT Shortie Gaiters SPOTLITE REVIEW," by Will Rietveld and Janet Reichl. BackpackingLight.com (ISSN 1537-0364).
http://backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin/backpackinglight/integral_designs_event_shortie_gaiters_spotlite_review.html, 2006-09-10 03:00:00-06.

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