Hiking Pants are probably one of the less sung heroes of the hiking gear kit. You generally hear a lot more about hiking boots and rain jackets and that type of thing. However, hiking pants are just as critical to help ensure you have as comfortable a day on the trail as possible.
The links below take you through to our top choices for the best men and women's hiking pants. You'll be happy to learn that there are a lot of great choices out there, and we have trimmed them down to list out our favorites to help you in you buying process.
Some Tips Before you Buy
There has been a lot of progress in the last few years in terms of comfort, durability and the construction of the best hiking pants. I think the options that are available now are, broadly speaking, exceptionally good. Overall, you can expect good comfort and flexibility for a decent price.
If you’re new to hiking and have never bought a pair of hiking pants before, check out the blog post on how to choose the best hiking pants. That will walk you through all the many things you should consider when choosing a suitable pair of hiking pants that will meet your needs.
If however, you don't have time for that, then read the most important thing in the summary version in the next section.
Know What You Need Them For
This is the fundamental message when buying any part of hiking clothing. Just like buying hiking boots or a rain jacket, you need to know what you need your hiking pants for. For example, if you hike mainly in a warm sunny climate, you will want to consider things like UPF protection, convertibility into hiking shorts and that type of thing. You will also be looking for a lighter weight construction with excellent breathability.
Moving on from that, if you hike mainly in the Highlands in Scotland, while you might get away with the last pair of hiking pants described above, a few days in the year in Summer, if you're lucky 🙂 , they're not going to cut it the rest of the year round when the biting winds and heavy rain starts to make their way down from the North.
As well as excellent rain pants, which go over your hiking pants in wet conditions, you will need a much tougher and more resilient pair of hiking pants. Water resistance and repellency will be high on your list, again breathability will be very important ... converting your pants into hiking shorts, probably not even on the list in that climate and in those conditions 🙂
Anyway, you get the idea. You need to know what you need your hiking pants for, and you know that from thinking about where you do your hiking, etc. That's the main thing but there is loads more in the buying guide which I strongly recommend you check out.
As stated above, we are blessed these days as there are many really good options available when it comes to hiking pants. As with the other gear pages here on the site, we’ve went through a bunch of them to pick out the best hiking pants, see the links to the best hiking pants for men and women at the top of this page, that we think are a really great option for the trail. Our recommendations, as always, are based on functionality, capability and user experience.
OK, so that’s it for now. We hope you found this information useful and it helps you in the process of getting the right pair of hiking pants for you for the trail, that meets all of your needs. As always, take your time choosing your gear. Educate yourself first before making a shortlist and, most importantly, be clear about what you need your hiking pants for e.g. environment, climate, conditions, etc.
This page and the men and women's hiking pants recommendations it links to, will be updated as time moves on. Gear is always being updated and gets more and more functional as technology and new fabric and material innovations are created.