Hands-on Gear Review

Outdoor Research Ferrosi Convertible - Women's Review

Price:  $89 List | $69.62 at Amazon
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Sheds water, stretchy material
Cons:  Convertible zippers are tight on legs, small hand pockets, no crop option
Bottom line:  A stretchy pair of that would be comfortable if the legs were looser.
Editors' Rating:   
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Measured Weight:  9.4 oz
Inseam (from crotch to cuff):  31" (pant), 9.5" (shorts)
Fabric:  86% ripstop Nylon, 14% Spandex 90D stretch woven ripstop
Manufacturer:   Outdoor Research

Our Verdict

There's a lot to like about the Outdoor Research Ferrosi Convertible hiking pants. They are lightweight, stretchy, and will shed a light rain. They have a lot more spandex in them than some of the other hiking pants that we tested, and while that makes them stretchy and soft, they didn't dry as quickly as a result. The stretchiness feels great on, and we loved the mobility of this pair, but it was hampered somewhat by the tight fit in the legs and the convertible zippers. They felt slightly constricting on our main tester, who has skinny legs to begin with, so someone with more muscle in their upper legs might have a hard time getting a good fit in these pants. This pair is available in a non-convertible option, but if you love convertible pants, check out our Editors' Choice winner, the Marmot Lobo's. If you're looking for something more affordable, our Best Buy winner, the Columbia Saturday Trail Stretch, retails for only $60.



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Our Analysis and Test Results

Review by:
Cam McKenzie Ring

Last Updated:
Friday
October 27, 2017

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The Outdoor Research Ferrosi Convertible pants are made with a 86% ripstop nylon and 14% spandex blend. These pants have a 31 inch inseam and they convert into a 9.5 inch Bermuda short. There is only one inseam length available, and they come in sizes 2-14. Current color options are: Mushroom, Pewter and Black.

Performance Comparison


Hiking in Red Rock  Nevada  in the Ferrosis. We liked a lot of things about this pant  but it fell a little short of our Editors' Choice award winner.
Hiking in Red Rock, Nevada, in the Ferrosis. We liked a lot of things about this pant, but it fell a little short of our Editors' Choice award winner.

Comfort & Mobility


We had mixed feelings about the comfort and mobility of this pair. There's no question that the softshell like material is comfortable and stretchy, and it moves with you more than a pair with less elastane or spandex, like the Marmot Lobo's. However, the cut of the leg was very slim in the size that we tested it in, and combined with the convertible zipper placement at the bottom of the thighs, we felt that both our comfort and mobility was impacted. The zippers are an un-stretchy band in an otherwise stretchy leg, and without them we surely would have had greater range of motion. The tightness of the zipper on the legs was just plain annoying as well.

We understand the fashion trend towards skinnier pants, but it just doesn't work with convertible pants. The Arc'teryx Gamma LT is also a softshell pant with a skinny leg, but we had much better mobility in that pair because there was no zipper. Also, we should note that our lead tester has notoriously skinny legs, and they felt tight on her (while still fitting in the waist), so we can't see these working for anyone with more muscular thighs. For a convertible pant with a looser cut, check out the The North Face Paramount 2.0 pants.

The material is stretchy and didn't restrict us when scrambling  but the tight legs and convertible zippers did.
The material is stretchy and didn't restrict us when scrambling, but the tight legs and convertible zippers did.

Versatility


The ability for these pants to turn into Bermuda shorts definitely ups their versatility score. There is no way to secure a crop length, though, and the fabric is so soft that when you try and roll up the legs they don't stay that way for long. They are lightweight enough for hot days, but might feel a bit too light in colder weather. Also, due to the tight fit it would be hard to layer under this pair.

This pair converts into a knee-length short.
This pair converts into a knee-length short.

Breathability


These pants are lightweight and highly breathable, though they didn't feel quite as breathable as the Mountain Hardwear Dynama, perhaps because of the tight cut.

We never felt overheated in these pants even on hot days  and the convertible option helped keep us cooler when the temps soared.
We never felt overheated in these pants even on hot days, and the convertible option helped keep us cooler when the temps soared.

Durability


The Ferrosi are well-made pants with double-stitched seams and heavy-duty snaps at the waist. The material is very thin though, and while we didn't experience any issues during testing, it probably wouldn't take much butt-scootching on some desert sandstone to wear a hole in this pair.

Weather Resistance


When it comes to wind, this 90D nylon doesn't offer much resistance. Water does bead up on these pants initially, but once they get soaked they took almost twice as long to dry compared to The North Face Paramount 2.0 and the Marmot Lobo's. The Arc'teryx Gamma LT is a slightly thicker softshell and offers better weather resistance with the same drying time.

Water beads up and roll off of these pants  and they do repel a light rain  but once they get wet they take longer to dry than the pants with less spandex or elastane.
Water beads up and roll off of these pants, and they do repel a light rain, but once they get wet they take longer to dry than the pants with less spandex or elastane.

Features


In addition to the convertible legs, this pair has a zippered pocket on the leg that can hold a phone, but the hand pockets are so shallow that they can't hold much let alone your hand.

The hand pockets are really small  and a bit of a disappointment for those that like to hike with their hands in their pockets.
The side pocket is big enough for a smartphone  and has a zipper so that you don't lose it!

Because the material is stretchy, we were able to get the removable pant legs off without having to take our hiking shoes off. But there's no easy way to distinguish which leg came off which side, which can make putting them back on a hit or miss affair. The color coded zippers on The North Face Paramount was a nice feature for avoiding this issue.

We were able to squeeze the legs around our size 10 hikers  though it might not work on a pair of hiking boots.
We were able to squeeze the legs around our size 10 hikers, though it might not work on a pair of hiking boots.

We did like the internal drawstring for tightening the waist, which did tend to stretch out a bit as the day wore on, and there's also belt loops for those who prefer a belt, though that doesn't usually work well with a backpack hipbelt.

The drawstring is nice for cinching down your pants without having to wear a belt. The belt loops are thin and low profile  and didn't bother us under a waistbelt.
The drawstring is nice for cinching down your pants without having to wear a belt. The belt loops are thin and low profile, and didn't bother us under a waistbelt.

Best Applications


The Outdoor Research Ferrosi Convertible are a lightweight pair of hiking pants that work well in warm weather, but might not be the best for colder hikes where you want room for a baselayer underneath.

Hike in hot climates and want the option to turn your pants into shorts? The Ferrosi's are a good choice.
Hike in hot climates and want the option to turn your pants into shorts? The Ferrosi's are a good choice.

Value


These pants retail for $89, which is on the high side of the hiking pant market. If you don't need the convertible option, a zipper-less pair costs "only" $80.

Conclusion


There were some great things about the Outdoor Research Ferrosi Convertible pants, including the soft, stretchy material and deep side zippered pocket. But the tight fit in the legs, and the "get these pants off me" feeling that the convertible zippers gave us definitely made us not as psyched on this pair overall.

Cam McKenzie Ring

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Most recent review: October 27, 2017
Summary of All Ratings

OutdoorGearLab Editors' Rating:  
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 (5.0)
Average Customer Rating:  
 (0.0)
Rating Distribution
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5 star: 100%  (1)
4 star: 0%  (0)
3 star: 0%  (0)
2 star: 0%  (0)
1 star: 0%  (0)


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