A good pair of walking trousers will be able to stand up to constant abrasion, changes in conditions and they’ll also provide conveniences like storage for things like your phone, compass and map. But there’s no point in having a high performance pair that tick all of these boxes if they’re not going to feel comfortable to walk in. And that’s why we’ve put together this test of the best women’s walking trousers; we want to highlight the products where the fit – or the cut – haven’t been neglected and aren’t the result of that old-fashioned ‘shrink it and pink it’ approach.
Take the Fjällräven Kaipak Curved trousers, for example. They are specifically built to accommodate a more curvaceous body type, including features like an accentuated waistband, a body mapped construction and stretch panels for freedom of movement.
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Many outdoor brands, such as Halti and Sasta, now include plus size options to accommodate a wider range of builds too. Though a long time coming, it’s refreshing to see these companies leading the way, with hopefully more to come across the industry.
Related: Why Should Plus Size Women Have To Shrink Themselves To Access Good Quality Kit?
Aside from the fit and cut, when choosing a pair of women’s walking pants it’s worth considering the types of fabrics used and the thickness of them. Softshell is a popular material as it tends to be breathable, stretchy and tear resistant, blending a number of materials including polyester or nylon and elastane. Polyester and cotton blends tend to be popular as they tend to provide a high level of protection from the wind. These different constructions have different advantages and disadvantages when compared against each other, so there isn’t necessarily one that can be described as being the best.
It’s also important to look at the adjustment options on a pair of hiking trousers. For instance, what kind of waistband do they have, is it elasticated or semi elasticated? If there’s no elastication, is there an integrated hipbelt or just belt loops? Is there any volume adjustment down at the ankle cuffs? These can be handy if you want the trousers to hold to your boot, keep warm air in and insects out, and not flap in the wind so much. Also consider the amount of pockets and their placement, size and how they close up. Are they big enough to hold a map, are they secure enough to keep your phone or car keys inside?
The Best Women’s Walking Trousers
Here’s our round-up of the best hiking pants for women. All of the images show our testers out using the product in places like the Lake District, Snowdonia and the Scottish Highlands. Remember, if you need extra info, we’ve stuck links to our full in-depth product reviews alongside each one.
- Black Yak Aceh
- Sasta Taival
- Halti Pallas 2
- Fjällräven Kaipak
- Revolution Race GP ProTrousers
- Patagonia Point Peak Pants
- Salewa Alpine Hemp Light Pants
- Häglofs Rugged Flex
- Montane Terra Ridge
- Keela Scuffer
The trousers listed should be suitable for a range of different outdoor activities at varying levels of weather protection. If, however, you’re looking for a bit more advice on what to look for in a good pair of walking pants, you’ll find some more info here, as well as some men’s trouser options too.
Black Yak Aceh Pants
Best for: Three-season hiking, trekking and alpinism
Key attributes: Technical design, zippered pockets, athletic fit
Black Yak’s Aceh Pants are constructed from a rugged combination of Kevlar and Cordura fabrics. The fact that both are also used in bulletproof vests and other military apparel speaks to how durable these trousers are. The thoughtful design and athletic cut ensures that stretch and comfort is maintained in key areas such as the gusset and knees, while areas of high abrasion are more protected by the tough fabrics by using different panels of fabric.
They also feature no less than three zipped pockets. They are perfectly sized for stashing a route map, your phone or a few energy bars. The integrated waist draw cord also allows you to forgo squeezing a belt on underneath your climbing harness (although they do still provide belt loops as well). The ankle zippers and pull tabs are a thoughtful addition. They make it easy to roll up the legs up for better venting, or to take the trousers on and off over your climbing shoes.
Related: How To Choose A Pair Of Climbing Shoes
Anyone who enjoys climbing, scrambling, or moving over rocky terrain will appreciate the tough fabrics and technical fit of the Aceh Pants. They would be a perfect choice for summer mountaineering in the Alps or climbing in the UK. But even those with less ambitious plans still wouldn’t find them overkill for general day-hiking in most UK three season conditions.
Three-season use / Kevlar and Cordura fabric build / athletic cut / articulated knees and gusset / targeted abrasion-resistant panelling / three zipped pockets / integrated waist draw cord / ankle zippers and pull tabs.
Selected for our Outdoor 100 2022/23 – Read our full Blackyak Aceh Pants review.
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