These are a stretchy pair of lightweight softshell hiking pants. The Ferrosi Convertible pants feature an 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. The material is comfortable and moves with you, but the legs are on the slim side, and the convertible zippers can feel constricting at first. These issues didn't deter our testers for long, though.
The Ferrosi's fit best on narrow hips and less-curvy women. For our tester's athletic build, the pant was just right.
Comfort & Mobility
At first, we weren't too sure we would like the Ferrosi's. They seemed to fit a bit snug around the thighs, and we weren't too convinced that we would be able to move well in these pants. However, once we put these on, we were pleasantly surprised. There isn't any high stepping that these pants can't handle. We climbed, scrambled, hiked, even slept in them, and had zero complaints. If you're looking for a pant that has a bit more room in the legs, check out our Best Buy Winner, the REI Co-op Sahara.
The tightness around the thighs is a bit odd at first, but it goes away once you start moving and there was never any chafing or rubbing noted by our testers. The zippers on the convertible leg were protected and didn't cause any problems. Many online reviews suggest sizing up, and if you have thicker thighs, we would recommend this too. Plus, you'll have an easier time putting a base layer underneath if you plan on wearing these pants in colder temps.
We loved these pants so much that we wore them for five straight days, and the pants never lost their shape. They can take quite a bit of abuse, unlike the Marmot Lobo's, which had the same tightness issues as the Ferrosi but lost their shape within 30 minutes of wear. We wore the Ferrosi on the trail, at camp, at the crag, and even to sleep one night under the stars because we loved them so much. The material moves with your body, not against it.
The Ferrosi didn't lose its flattering, but mobile, fit after five days of use.
The ability for these pants to turn into Bermuda shorts increases their versatility score. When in short mode, the Ferrosi's offered ample coverage. The tighter fit made for a more flattering short, which is a tall order when the shorts are a bit longer. Along with the new addition to the pant, a drawstring at the bottom, which enables you to cinch the bottom of the pant for climbing, bouldering, or traveling over scree, as well as cinching up for a cropped pant.
Although the Ferrosi is a convertible pant, it doesn't scream hiking pants the way the REI Co-Op Sahara's do. We still felt somewhat comfortable wearing these into town, although they aren't as stylish as The North Face Hybrid Utility Hiker Tights.
In cinch mode, the Ferrosi pants have the unique ability to make excellent cragging pants, or keep out small pebbles and dirt over bumpy terrain.
The Ferrosi's are not only suitable for a wide variety of hiking terrain, but they are perfect for other sports too. We especially liked using these for climbing. The deep hand pockets allowed us to store small items below our harness and the flexible, durable material stood up to sharp granite and abrasive sandstone. They also fit nicely under a harness, which we cannot say for the Lobo's, which kept sagging and pulling at our harness.
The cinch strap on the Ferrosis comes in handy to keep out rocks, wear the pant in capri mode, or take these pants to the crag.
The Ferrosi's are well-made pants with double-stitched seams and heavy-duty closures at the waist. The material is surprisingly thin, but we didn't encounter any issues scrambling over sandstone or climbing in them. The gusseted crotch does a lot to enforce the slim fit of these pants. We wore these pants in the desert for nearly a week without seeing any signs of wear.
Water does bead up on these pants initially, but once they got soaked, they took longer to dry compared to REI Co-Op Sahara and the Columbia Saturday Trail Stretch, which shed water constantly. Once wet, the Ferrosi's dried in the sun within 15 minutes, which was quite impressive. There was still slight dampness on the felt waistband, but that quickly dried in another five minutes. The Arc'teryx Gamma LT is a slightly thicker softshell and offers better weather resistance with a slightly longer drying time.
These pants also offer UPF 50+ protection, which we truly appreciated in the intense desert sun. When it comes to wind, this 90D nylon provides some resistance, but it also allows cooling breezes to penetrate the pant. Some people may feel that these pants run a little too breezy, but since the pant stretches easily, it's easy to fit a base layer underneath the pant without feeling like your waist and hips are too squeezed.
The Ferossi (left) and the Lobo's (right) getting soaked for some of our weather resistance testing. The Lobo's performed quite well and almost all of the water simply spilled right off the pant.
In addition to the convertible shorts and drawstrings at the bottom of the legs, this pair has a zippered pocket on the leg, two rear pockets, and massive hand pockets. Throughout all of the pants we tested, useless pockets were a recurring disease, the Ferrosi's are no exception. The side zipper pocket is pretty useless aside from holding a car key and an ID. However, the hand pockets are beyond deep, allowing you to carry your phone without worrying about it falling out. Sometimes this was uncomfortable while high stepping or scrambling, but for modest terrain, it didn't bother us.
The stretchy material combined with a felt-lined waist belt held up exceptionally well day in and day out. However, unlike the Marmot Lobo, the Ferrosi has a built-in drawstring that gives you the added protection to keep these pants right where you want them. There are also belt loops if you prefer to wear a belt.
Although the zippered pocket of the Ferrosi won't hold a phone, our phone felt secure in the extremely deep waist pockets.
These pants are lightweight and highly breathable, although they still cut the breeze out a bit when we encountered chilly desert winds. We appreciated the balance in the design here, since you don't always want a pant to let in every single breeze, but you do want them to vent well. If you're looking for a pant that is going to keep the wind at bay, then consider the Arc'teryx Gamma LT.
The Ferrosi Convertible is a lightweight pair of hiking pants that work well in a wide variety of conditions and can tackle any terrain where you're looking to adventure. We wouldn't recommend them for colder winter days, but for most hiking applications, these pants are an excellent choice. They maintain their structure enough to wear day in and day out, making them the ideal choice for backpackers, climbers, and hikers.
The Ferrosi's handled the abuse of trad gear and sharp rocks during the testing period.
These pants retail for $90, which is on the high side of the hiking pant market. If you don't need the convertible option, a zipper-less pair costs $80.
The Outdoor Research Ferrosi Convertible pants were the model we kept coming back to thanks to the stretchy, durable material and lasting fit. However, we certainly recognize that these pants aren't best for curvier women, and we would encourage you to try before you buy if that sounds like you. If they fit, we certainly recommend them for a broad range of outdoor recreation, hiking and beyond.