Paramount 2.0 Convertible Pant is a staple in The North Face's hiking pant line, and for many good reasons. These pants are quick drying, versatile, and packed with features. They are great for extended backpacking trips or single day hikes and scored at or near the top of the pack in most of our testing metrics. They were slightly outscored by our Editors' Choice winner, the Marmot Lobo's Convertible Pant. Ultimately it came down to a question of fit and comfort; if you like your pants higher waisted and your shorts shorter, then the Paramount 2.0s are the convertible pants to buy. If you prefer a mid-rise pant with a Bermuda-length short, then go with the Lobo's.
The North Face Paramount 2.0 Convertible Pant - Women's Review
Compare prices at 2 resellers Pros: Quick to dry, lots of pockets, inner drawstring, flattering short length
Cons: Cargo pockets don't hold much, inseam runs short
Manufacturer: The North Face
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The North Face Paramount 2.0 Convertible Pant is made of a 96% Nylon / 4% Elastane blend with "FlashDry" technology that's supposed to help them dry faster. They come in three inseam lengths (Short 30", Regular 32", and Long 34"), and convert into a 6" inseam short. Note that we tested these pants in a Regular inseam, but when we measured them the inseam was only 30 inches long, and they were distinctly short on our 5'6 tester. They come in sizes 00-16.
Comfort & Mobility
Whether or not you find convertible pants "comfortable" tends to be a question of preference and getting used to the zipper band around your thigh. Compared to all of the other convertible pants that we tested, this pair annoyed us the least because the zipper is mid-thigh and at a fairly wide place in the pant leg. The zipper band on the Marmot Lobo's occasionally felt a bit constricting as it lands right above the knee on a narrower part of the pant, and the one on theOutdoor Research Ferrosi Convertible was flat out uncomfortable and restricted our movement.
The Lobo's material is softer than the Paramount's though, and more comfortable for all-day wear, giving it a slight edge in this category. The rise on the Paramount is also slightly higher than most other hiking pants, and while we are not against high-waisted pants per se, they are not our favorite to wear under a backpack. We don't want them to sit so low that our hip belt pushes the pants down, but when they sit too high, it starts to feel uncomfortable and creates pressure points over bulky areas like belt loops.
The Paramount 2.0 does offer a lot of mobility, and we did prefer the shorter length shorts for some activities, like biking, where it's preferable not to have any restriction at the knee. The internal drawstring also helps keep the pants in place when moving around. If you're looking for an uber comfortable pair, check out our Top Pick for Comfort, the Mountain Hardwear Dynama, or the equally comfortable TNF Aphrodite 2.0.
Like all convertible pants, this pair is fairly versatile thanks to the ability to be worn as a full-length pant, short, or crop option. The previous version of this pant did not have the roll-up cuff feature, and we appreciate the option to now roll up and secure the bottom of the legs. There is one internal dangling strap on the bottom of each leg, but because the legs are cut on the wide side, we never really noticed them.
These pants are slightly heavier than the Marmot Lobo's, yet felt similar for breathability (we think the "extra" weight is coming from the convertible zipper, which feels bulky in this pair). They are light enough for hot weather hikes, and the 6" short options lets you stay more comfortable when the day warms up.
These pants are well-constructed and durably made. The material itself resists abrasions and snags, and we noticed no pilling or wear areas during our testing period. The front snap closure is strong and didn't pop open on us once, and the shorter-on-us inseam length meant that the cuffs never dragged the ground.
The previous version of this pant used to have a DWR (durable water repellent) coating on the exterior, but TNF has done away with that. Water no longer beads up as well on the surface, and it didn't take much for the material to saturate through. The good news is that they are still quick-drying, and take only 20 minutes or so in the sun to dry out. Here is where the Marmot Lobo's gains a distinct edge over the Paramount, as they are more water resistant (but not fully waterproof either). The best option for truly wet weather is the Arc'teryx Gamma LT softshell pant. The Paramount 2.0 is rated UPF 50+, and the material blocks the wind better than the thinner Mountain Hardwear Dynama and TNF Aphrodite 2.0.
This pair is one of the most feature-rich options in our review. The convertible zippers are color-coded, which is a genius move on TNF's part. The two zippers on the right leg are red, and on the left they are blue, so no more misfiring or trying to figure out what zips where.
We also liked the deep hand pockets, as we could fit our whole hands in there comfortably while walking. There's also a small zippered security pocket inside the right-hand pocket for keeping small items safe. On the left-hand side, there's an internal mesh passport pocket for hiding that document away, though frankly, it doesn't feel that comfortable to hike with it in there (it's more of a travel feature). The side cargo pockets are on the small side though, and our phone couldn't entirely fit in there. Because the shorts are so short, there's not enough room for a larger cargo pocket, but it is a shame since that is the best spot to carry a phone or camera.
The Paramount 2.0 Convertible Pant is a great choice for any fall, spring, or summer hiking adventure, whether that's a day hike or a multi-day backcountry trip. The convertible option lets you adjust for a change in temperature, and the quick-drying material is ideal for washing out your pants in camp or drying them fast after a storm. If you prefer to wear tights on the trail, you can check out our Top Pick for Trail Running, The North Face Hybrid Tights.
With an $80 price tag, these pants are comparable in price to many of the other models on the market but offer way more value. You get three options for the price of one, along with durable construction and a lot of features.
We like The North Face Paramount 2.0 Convertible Pant a lot, and they came close to winning our Editors' Choice Award. They are great for a variety of hiking objectives, are quick to dry, and easy to convert into shorts when the day heats up. While not the best fit for some of our testers, they might be perfect for you, and they are an excellent choice for almost any hiking adventure you have in mind.
— Cam McKenzie Ring