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Marmot Lobo's Convertible Pant - Women's Review

A versatile pair of convertible pants that work well for most outdoor activities.
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Price:  $80 List | $29.95 at Backcountry
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Versatile, stretchy, lightweight
Cons:  Longer short length, convertible zippers are uncomfortable, waistband stretches
Manufacturer:   Marmot
By Meg Atteberry & Cam McKenzie Ring  ⋅  Dec 9, 2019
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67
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#6 of 15
  • Comfort and Mobility - 30% 6
  • Versatility - 15% 7
  • Durability - 15% 6
  • Weather Resistance - 15% 8
  • Features - 15% 6
  • Breathability - 10% 8

Our Verdict

The Marmot Lobo's Convertible Pant offers a range of versatility and superior water-resistance while remaining comfortable and easy to move in. They can be worn as full-length pants, rolled-up capris, or shorts, and come in a slim-fitting design that is flattering for some body types. We love the roll-up cuffs on the pant legs, as well as the soft inner waistband that prevents chafing. 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. The only downsides (in our opinion), are the convertible zippers, which tended to feel a bit annoying against our legs. The waistband stretches almost an entire pant size, and there is no drawstring, meaning you might need a belt to keep them on. These pants are great for a wide range of outdoor recreation activities. They are great 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.


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Price $29.95 at Backcountry
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Overall Score Sort Icon
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Star Rating
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Pros Versatile, stretchy, lightweightHold their shape day after day, breathable, durable, deep hand pockets will hold a phoneMobile, wide range of fit options, shed water easily, excellent pocketsInfinite mobility, soft and cozy, excellent pockets, highly versatileFeminine fit, many adjustment options, mobile, comfortable, articulated knees
Cons Longer short length, convertible zippers are uncomfortable, waistband stretchesFits tight on thighs, cargo pocket is not very usefulButton doesn’t appear to be durable, limited color optionsHeavy, no water repelling technology, not ideal for hot daysSome pilling, weak buttons, small pockets
Bottom Line A versatile pair of convertible pants that work well for most outdoor activities.An excellent, stretchy pair of pants that can handle almost anything.A great bargain for a convertible hiking pant the does it all.The coziest hiker tight you’ll ever need.Great pair for colder hiking days, rock climbing, or bouldering.
Rating Categories Lobo's Convertible Pant Ferrosi Convertible Sahara Convertible Patagonia Pack Out - Women's Prana Halle - Women's
Comfort And Mobility (30%)
10
0
6
10
0
8
10
0
7
10
0
9
10
0
9
Versatility (15%)
10
0
7
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
6
Durability (15%)
10
0
6
10
0
8
10
0
6
10
0
7
10
0
6
Weather Resistance (15%)
10
0
8
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
2
10
0
5
Features (15%)
10
0
6
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
7
Breathability (10%)
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
6
10
0
6
10
0
5
Specs Lobo's Convertible... Ferrosi Convertible Sahara Convertible Patagonia Pack Out... Prana Halle -...
Measured Weight (in oz) 9.0 oz 9.5 oz 9.6 oz 10.2 oz 12.0 oz
Inseam (from crotch to cuff) 32" (pants), 24" (crop), 9" (shorts) 31" (pant), 9.5" (shorts) 32" 29" 32" (pant), 24" (crop)
Fabric 94% Nylon, 6% Elastane 86% ripstop Nylon, 14% Spandex 90D stretch woven ripstop Nylon 87% polyester/13% spandex 97% Nylon, 3% Spandex (shell); 100% Polyester (trim)
Pockets 2 hand, 1 side (zip), 2 back 2 hand, 2 back (zip), 1 side (zip) 2 hand, 2 back, 2 cargo 2 side 2 hand, 1 side (zip), 2 back (button)
Zip-Off or Roll-Up? Roll-up & zip off Zip-off Zip-off No Roll-up
UPF? UPF 50 UPF 50 UPF 50 No UPF 50
Integrated Belt? No Yes, internal drawcord Yes No Yes, internal drawcord
Fit Features Regular fit, interior waistband, convertible (to shorts) Articulated knees, convertible (to shorts) Gusseted crotch, mid rise, convertible (to shorts) Thick elastic waist, tight fit Articulated knees, mid-rise, relaxed fit, 3 inseam lengths
Lengths available Regular Regular Regular Regular Short, Regular, Tall

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Lobo's feature an abrasion-resistant 94% Nylon / 6% Elastane blend 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 a variety of colors.

Performance Comparison


The Lobo's perform well on cold  windy days  and we are pretty excited about it.
The Lobo's perform well on cold, windy days, and we are pretty excited about it.

Comfort & Mobility


These pants rated about average in this metric. The elastane adds some stretch and suppleness to the material, softening the nylon, which is not typically a comfortable material to wear. The Marmot Lobo's Convertible Pant is a great choice for hiking, backpacking, climbing, and adventuring if you have a wider waist and thinner thighs. Our thin-waisted tester has an athletic build and found that these pants didn't fit quite right. The thighs were too tight, while the waist stretched an entire size.

The inner fleece waistband is a nice touch, giving you a cushion over your hipbones and helping to prevent chafing when wearing a hip belt. The Lobo's also sit at a perfect place on our hips — not so low so that a hip belt pushes them down as we hike, but not too high either to avoid having extra material at the waist that bunches and pinches. The diamond-shaped gusset keeps any concern of pant-splitting at bay, and these pants move freely no matter what outdoor activity you are doing.

After only 30 minutes of wear  the Lobo's stretched an entire pant size.
After only 30 minutes of wear, the Lobo's stretched an entire pant size.

The convertible zippers do bring this model's comfort rating down a touch. The pants have a slightly tapered fit and convert into a Bermuda-length short, so the zipper sits just above the knee, and there is not that much gap 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 getting used to it while walking, it was so annoying while sitting and driving 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, or our legs being a little large in the lower thigh. but we did not experience the same issues with other convertible pairs in this review.

The Lobo's in short mode offers a cozy fit that isn't too short or too long. The zippers are also protected so they don't rub  but the tighter fit on the legs did bug us on our way to the trailhead.
The Lobo's in short mode offers a cozy fit that isn't too short or too long. The zippers are also protected so they don't rub, but the tighter fit on the legs did bug us on our way to the trailhead.

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. Although this certainly helps over rough terrain, the material doesn't bounce back to its original shape. After 20 minutes of walking uphill, the pants began to fall off. Without a drawstring, this became a significant issue while testing.

Versatility


These pants scored above average for versatility, not only because of their convertible design but also their water resistance. If you want something that works 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.

The Lobo's convert quickly, and their stretchy material slips over boots and shoes well. We love the hook and loop system on these pants to convert them to capris.

The advantage of a convertible pant over a traditional one is that you can tailor them to suit the changing weather of the day. If you start at 6 am and the day is chilly, you'll naturally want long pants. But as the day warms up, you can unzip the pant legs and quickly convert to shorts, and then change them back once you reach the summit and temps cool back down.

Durability


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. However, we knocked the Lobo's a bit for their inability to hold their shape on a long day out. When we washed the pant, they did return to their original size, but the waistband stretch problem continued to happen day after day.

Weather Resistance


The Lobo's have 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 feel confident wearing these pants in 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 30 minutes in full sun.

The Ferrosis (left) and Lobo's (right) getting soaked for some of our weather resistance testing. Water just rolls right off these pants and what does soak in dries quickly.
The Ferrosis (left) and Lobo's (right) getting soaked for some of our weather resistance testing. Water just rolls right off these pants and what does soak in dries quickly.

As for other types of weather, this model has a UPF 50+ rating, meaning it will protect your legs from even the sunniest day. While they do okay, these pants don't block the wind as much as thicker pants in this review.

Features


The Marmot Lobo's have plenty of features, most of which we like, though we do have a few quibbles. The loop 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 hiking boots.

As with many of the pants we tested, the pockets leave a lot to be desired. The two front hand pockets are almost big enough to get our hands into them all the way, but they don't hold a phone well. The one side zippered pocket is great for small items like a lip balm, keys, or ID, but not much else.

We found the side stash pocket of the Lobos to be too small to be very useful beyond holding lip balm.
We found the side stash pocket of the Lobos to be too small to be very useful beyond holding lip balm.

The soft lining on the waistband is another plus, but there is no internal drawstring, which we ended up wishing for when testing. There are external belt loops in case you need to make them tighter, but that is less ideal if wearing a backpack with a hip belt. We do like the way the pants convert to a cropped 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.

This hook-and-loop design saves weight and time with the Lobo's.
This hook-and-loop design saves weight and time with the Lobo's.

Breathability


The Marmot Convertible Pants are breathable enough to accommodate your active lifestyle. The material is thin and lightweight, which naturally makes them more breathable. We wore these pants while hiking in warm desert environments and never once felt overly sweaty in them. The crop option is an easy way to add ventilation when it's not too hot. Nothing beats switching to shorts when it does get warm though. To be able to remove the bottoms on hot days is a great feature, and the mid-thigh conversion zipper can even double as a half-zipped vent for increased airflow to the legs.

These pants perform surprisingly well in windy  cold conditions.
These pants perform surprisingly well in windy, cold conditions.

Value


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.

Conclusion


The Marmot Lobo's is a strong pair of pants. The technical features of the Lobo's keep us dry, well-ventilated, and comfortable while hiking, but the fit just doesn't quite stand up to rigorous physical activity. They do convert quickly and provide plenty of mobility. If you are not expecting a deluge, you could probably leave your rain pants behind if you're wearing these.


Meg Atteberry & Cam McKenzie Ring