Hiking pants, sometimes called parkas, are lightweight, quick drying pants (usually made from different kinds of cotton) which are perfect for all sorts of outdoor activities. They are made of breathable mesh and usually feature some combination of several characteristics: they have lots of room, they are breathable, they are waterproof, etc. They are perfect for any kind of hiking. There are even some hiking pants, which are made to convert from shorts to pants for easy dressing.
Hiking pants usually come with lots of pockets, are extremely lightweight and dry quickly. They are also available in a variety of styles. Most of them are blue jeans-style, but you will see some that are just as comfortable (and which are lighter!) in a variety of colors.
The primary feature that determines the quality of hiking pants is their breathability. There are lots of manufacturers that claim that their products are really good for moisture management, but only a few of them are really successful in providing good moisture control. Most of them use a mesh lining, rather than a nylon lining, as this has a much better breathability overall. This mesh is also very lightweight and, therefore, more comfortable to wear. In addition, most of the companies that make these kinds of pants offer a zip-off liner which adds even more breathability to the fabric.
As compared to nylon, it is a lot more durable. However, nylon loses its stretch much quicker when it gets wet, which may make blue jeans less appealing for those people who are looking for a really lightweight option. Nylon on the other hand, tends to lose its compression strength when wet and thus does not have nearly the same benefits when it comes to moisture management as Hiking Pants. Though many of these nylon pairs can pass for blue jeans hiking pants, they may not be the best choice for heavy-duty hiking trips.
Another aspect which needs to be taken into consideration is the functionality and utility. This is particularly important for off-trail hikers as, although many of them enjoy hiking, many of them also enjoy backpacking. Hiking and backpacking require a great deal more technical function than does backpacking, and hiking pants which are more bulky may not be the best choice here. A lot of modern day hiking pants offer a great deal of flexibility and often are more adaptable than their backpacking brothers. A lot of them also feature features such as an optional waist belt which adds extra protection and allows for a more even torso fit.
Another key aspect that determines how well a pair of hiking pants will perform is their durability and resilience. Although the majority of these pants offer excellent performance, this is not always the case and the most durable and resilient pants tend to be the priciest varieties. These pants offer excellent features such as waterproofing and stretching and durability, but they also cost an outstanding amount of money. Fortunately, most waterproof pants on the market today are much more affordable than their backpacking brothers and are certainly more long lasting. These pants do require a lot more regular care and maintenance, however.
Another useful feature that many hiking pants offer is the addition of several pocket options. Some pockets are functional and necessary, such as hip belt pockets which enable the user to carry extra items including a handheld GPS, knife, or even their cell phone. Others, however, are purely cosmetic, and serve only to increase the appearance of the outfit. One of the most common features in these pockets is the presence of removable “cuff” laces, which make it much easier to keep the pants tucked into your boots.
There are many different styles of waterproof hiking pants on the market today. Many of the cheapest models will only keep you comfortable for a short amount of time and can’t withstand very heavy loads. As a result, it’s important to only buy these quality pants if you really need to spend your money on them – otherwise you could end up buying several less-than-reliable products that will not last through any amount of wet weather.