Hands-on Gear Review
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Pros: Extremely stretchy and comfortable, most moveable, water resistant, breathes well
Cons: No convertible features.
Best Uses: Day hikes, long climbing approaches, multi-pitch climbs.
As one of two hiking pants that are gusseted and part spandex, the Patagonia Simple Guide is the most flexible. The spandex cuts down on the breathability ever so slightly, allowing the OR Reverie to edge ahead in that area. The Simple Guide has a streamlined, comfortable design with just the right features for hiking, such as water resistance and a zippered thigh pocket.
If the most important feature in your hiking pants is for them to move as you move, then the Patagonia Simple Guide Pants are for you. These are the best choice for long alpine climbing approaches since they double as an excellent climbing pant and hiking pant, which is why we give them our Top Pick award. The Arc'teryx Palisade Pant is also extremely comfortable and flexible, though they are not as durable and are more expensive than the Simple Guide. If you are looking for the most ideal pant for a long hiking trip, the lighter OR Reverie has the best combination of attributes. For those looking for versatile wear options, The North Face Paramount Peak converts into three different modes and is less expensive.
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OutdoorGearLab Editors' Hands-on Review
The Simple Guide Pant has one zippered rear pocket and two zippered hand pockets. The zippered thigh pocket, similar to the one on the OR Reverie, is well placed for use with a pack waist belt or a climbing harness. These pants are also stylish for just wearing around town, being the least technical-looking of the hiking pants.
If you are planning a long backpacking trip, these would not be the most ideal pants. Though they are comfortable and easy to move in, they have no convertible features like the other pants in this review and no waist adjustment for if they stretch out while wearing them for multiples days. The OR Reverie, which is made of a much thinner and lighter material, would be the best selection for a long trip.
Comfort & Fit
Even though they are slightly thicker than other pants in this review, the Simple Guide Pants are extremely comfortable to hike in. The pants have a regular fit, being form fitting around the rear and thigh, which adds to their stylish looks and makes them particularly comfortable. The spandex included in the matarial makes the pants conform to fit to your body.
The Patagonia Simple Guide Pants are amazingly stretchy and comfortable and move well with you while hiking. They are gusseted under the legs, have articulated knees, and constructed with 9 percent spandex, making them the most flexible and moveable pants. These same features are what makes them ideal for rock climbing, particularly multi-pitch climbing. Lengthy multi-pitch routes typically involve a long-ish hike to the climb, which demands a pant that is comfortable to hike in as well as climb in, and these pants fit the bill.
These pants are made out of 91% recycled polyester, and breathe well and even though they have no convertible features built in. They can still be rolled up at the cuffs for more temperature regulation while hiking or climbing.
They protect against the elements with a water-resistant DWR treatment. They will get wet in a downpour but they dry quickly, which a huge plus.
The Simple Guide pants are best used on long climbing approaches or hikes that involve a lot of scrambling. Since they are the stretchiest and easiest to move in, they also are the best for climbing in and particularly excel at multi-pitch climbing. They make the best pants for an adventure that involves more than simply hiking.
The Simple Guide Pants are on the upper end of the price spectrum for hiking pants, but they are very cleverly constructed and comfortable. If you want the most comfortable pants to hike in, these are worth it. Since Patagonia offers a reliable satisfaction guarantee, buying these is virtually risk free.
Men's Patagonia Simple Guide Pant
— McKenzie Long
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OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews
Most recent review: March 8, 2012
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