The Marmot Lobo's Convertible Pant won our Editors' Choice award for incredible versatility and water resistance while remaining comfortable and easy to move in. They can be worm as full-length pants, roll-up capris, or shorts, and come in a slim fitting design that is flattering. We loved the feminine details on the stitch work and roll-up cuffs on the pant legs, as well as the soft inner waistband to prevent chaffing. We took these pants hiking and climbing in the desert, and the mountains and they excelled in a variety of weather conditions and resisted abrasive rock. These pants wear well with shoes, boots, and sandals, adding to their versatility. Their only downside (in our opinion), is the convertible zippers, which tended to feel a bit annoying against our legs. But other than that, if we were only going to wear one hiking pant for all of our outdoor adventures, these are the one! If you don't want zip-off legs, check out the Marmot Lobo's Pant which is $10 less expensive.
Marmot Lobo's Convertible Pant - Women's Review
Cons: Longer short length, convertible zippers are uncomfortable.
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The Marmot Lobo's Convertible Pant is an excellent choice for hiking, backpacking, climbing, and adventuring. They are made with an abrasion resistant 94% Nylon/6% Elastane blend that's treated with a DWR coating. The material is UPF 50, quick drying, and while there is only one inseam option (32"), they convert to 24" capris and 9" shorts. They come in sizes 2-14 and Black, Dark Steele, Stone Green, and Desert Khaki colors.
Comfort & Mobility
These pants rated high for this category. The added elastane gives some stretch and suppleness to the material, softening the nylon which is not typically a comfortable material to wear.
The inner fleece waistband is a nice touch, giving you a nice cushion over your hipbones and helping to prevent chafing when wearing a hip belt. They also sit at a perfect place on our hips — not so low so that a hip belt pushes them down as we hiked, but not too high either to avoid having extra material at the waist that bunches and pinches.
There were a few downsides when it came to this model's comfort rating though, notably the convertible zippers. As the pants have a slightly tapered fit and the pants convert into a Bermuda-length short, the zipper sits just above the knee, and there is not that much gap there between the pants and our legs. As such, we could feel the zipper area with every step (the zipper is enclosed in the material, so it's not the actual zipper against our skin, just the bulky conversion area as a whole). While we started to get used to it while walking, it was so annoying while sitting and driving home from the trailhead that we had to stop and zip the legs off before finishing an hour drive home. Maybe this is just us being overly sensitive and not entirely used to convertible pants, as we experienced the same issue with the Outdoor Research Ferrosi Convertible - Women's as well. On the other hand, the zipper on the The North Face Paramount 2.0 Convertible Pant - Women's sits much higher on our legs, more mid-thigh length, and didn't seem to bother us as much there.
As for Mobility, the elastane mentioned above helps the material stretch in any direction, and when scrambling, squatting, and high-stepping we felt no resistance. The diamond-shaped gusset kept any concern of pant-splitting at bay, and these pants will move freely no matter what outdoor activity you are doing. If you are looking for something specifically for bouldering or rock climbing, we did prefer the much stretchier Prana Halle for those applications. And, if you need a pair that works as well hiking as for lounging on the couch at the end of the day, check out the Mountain Hardwear Dynama, our Top Pick for Comfort.
These pants also scored at the top of the pack for Versatility, not only because of their convertible design but also their water resistance.
If you want something that will work equally well for a quick paddle and a day hike, then these pants are hard to beat. The only thing they don't do well is running, so if you are looking for something for trail runs or fastpacking, check out The North Face Hybrid Hiker Tights, our Top Pick for Trail Running.
The Marmot Lobo's Convertible Pant are breathable enough to accommodate your active lifestyle. The material is thin and lightweight, which naturally makes them more breathable than the heavier Kuhl Splash Roll Up Pant.
We wore these pants while hiking in warm desert environments though, and never once felt overly sweaty in them. The crop option is a nice way to add ventilation when it's not too hot. Nothing beats switching to shorts when it does get warm. Better to be able to remove the bottoms on hot days, and the mid-thigh conversion zipper can even double as a half-zipped vent for increased airflow to the legs as well.
The abrasion resistant Nylon proved its worth for the longevity of these pants. We scrambled in rough terrain and climbed on sharp limestone, and nothing made a dent in the material.
We also noticed no pilling between the legs or wear on the seat, unlike the Prana Halle and Mountain Hardwear Dynama pants.
The Marmot Lobo's Convertible Pant have a DWR (durable water repellent) treatment, which helps water bead off the pants instead of saturating through, keeping you dry. In our water test, no amount of spraying with the water bottle would cause the material to get wet, and it held big puddles on the surface for a long time. By rubbing the water in (as would happen if you were hiking in the rain and your legs were brushing against each other), the material did finally get wet, but we'd feel confident wearing these pants in a light rain without needing to put on a pair of rain pants.
We wore them for a day in a canoe, and the constant back and forth of the paddle across our legs should have left us soaked, but we were completely dry at the end because the water just rolled right off. When we soaked the pants through and wrung them out, they dried within 20 minutes in full sun, which, along with The North Face Paramount 2.0 pants, was the fastest of all the models in this review. The Paramount 2.0 pants were equally impressive with their water-resistant properties, and either of these pants would be a great choice for a long thru-hike where you want something that is quick drying. We did like the Arc'teryx Gamma LT better for really drizzly and cold days though, and gave it our Top Pick for Wet Weather award.
As for other types of weather, this model has a UPF 50+ rating, meaning it will protect your legs from even the strongest sunny day. This pant didn't block the wind as much as the thicker Gamma LT or Kuhl Spash Roll Up.
The Marmot Lobo's have plenty of features, most of which we liked, though we did have a few quibbles. The button closure for the crop conversion is cute and low profile, and they also quickly convert to shorts, as long as you are not wearing full hiking boots.
The two back pockets are stitched into the interior of the pant, adding to the comfort of the pants when sitting, biking, or climbing with empty pockets, leaving no excess fabric. The two front hand pockets are almost big enough to actually get our hands into all the way, but they do accommodate a phone or camera securely. The one side zippered pocket is great for small items like a ChapStick or ID, but not much else.
The soft lining on the waistband was another plus, but there is no internal drawstring which the previous version of this pant had. There are external belt loops in case you need to make them tighter, but that is never ideal if wearing a backpack with a hip belt. We did like the way the pants convert to a crop length — there is a small bungee cord that loops over a button on either side of each leg — which is a simple system that eliminates the hanging material that most other hiking pants have for securing a rolled-up pant leg.
These pants are great for a wide range of outdoor recreation activities. They are perfect for hiking, biking, traveling, and backpacking. Rolled up or converted into shorts, these pants are also great for water activities like kayaking, rafting, or stand-up paddleboarding.
At $80, these are not the most expensive pair of hiking pants on the market, and they have a great value considering the option to convert them to shorts.
The Marmot Lobo's Convertible Pant was a standout among the competition and a repeat winner of our Editors' Choice award. While The North Face Paramount 2.0 came close to this model, ultimately we preferred the fit of the Lobo's. The feminine design in combination with the technical features that kept us dry, well-ventilated, and comfortable while hiking is what sold us on this pant. They fit well with a backpack and are light enough to pack along on any trip, and if you are not expecting a deluge you could probably leave your rain pants behind if you're wearing these ones.
OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews
Most recent review: April 15, 2018
0% of 1 reviewers recommend it
These pants have lasted me more than a year which is rare for me. I do fieldwork for a job. I like the side pocket for my cell phone. However, the stitching on the back pockets is cheap. I keep my multi-tool in my back pocket and it broke through pretty quickly. I also really don't like the zippers. The rest of the pants fit well but the zippers are pretty tight on my legs.
Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this product to a friend.
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