Having a good pair of pants when exploring the outdoors will ensure that you stay comfortable, free of chafing, and don’t get too hot or cold. In this article we are discussing our five best men’s hiking pants for men in 2022.
To select these pants, we focused on trialing hiking pants known to be comfortable, breathable, and durable. We have thoroughly researched and put these picks through extensive use over the last year and through various environments and temperatures.
When it comes to choosing a pair of hiking pants there isn’t one size fits all and people want different things. So, we have narrowed our picks down into focus areas that they do the best.
Bottom line: Our top choice is Outdoor Research Ferossi. Just recently improved, these pants offer great stretch for functional backcountry use. Still has maintained good durability and excellent breathability. These pairs of pants are a fantastic choice for hiking in hot humid weather. Overall, these pants are definitely ideal for most situations and our favorite pick for men’s hiking pants.
Short on time? Here’s a summary of our top picks for men’s hiking pants in 2022
- Best All Around Hiking Pants: Outdoor Research Ferossi
- Best Budget Hiking Pants: Columbia Silver Ridge
- Best Convertible Hiking Pants: PrAna Double Peak Convertible
- Best Cargo Hiking Pants: Eddie Bauer Guide Pro
- Best Hiking Joggers for Men: Columbia Tech Trail Knit Jogger Pants
5 Best Men’s Hiking Pants
Hiking pants can really make a hike more or less enjoyable. We’ve tried pants that just plain out didn’t fit right. And some that were just way too hot and not breathable enough. We’re covering the best hiking pants you need to consider when buying the next pair.
Best All Around/Hot Weather Hiking Pants:
Outdoor Research Ferossi
All around a favorite pair of pants when it comes to durability, comfort, and breathability. The pants are the best so far in breathability making it our top pick for hiking in hot weather. Recently the Ferrosi Pants went through an update which has improved these pants compared to previous years.
The new updated Ferossi pants are made with improved fit. The fabric is now made more sustainable and has improved durability compared to the previous pair. Fabric is still highly breathable which makes this one of our favorite hiking pants to wear in hot weather.
Best Budget Men’s Hiking Pants
Columbia Silver Ridge Cargo Pants
Great for when you are on a budget. The pants have good wicking material that is highly breathable. Also, feature Omni-shade which helps to block out UVA and UVB rays, which will protect you from long term sun exposure. The pants have an elastic waist with hook and loop pockets.
Overall, these pants wear well and are super breathable and work great for hot weather. Would work as a great cheaper breathable and comfortable alternative to Ferossi. The pants stretch with movement which works well for outdoor activity. But do tend to fit a little snug around the hips and thighs.
Best Convertible Hiking Pants
PrAna Double Peak Convertible
These convertible pants from Prana are a favorite; they are light, sturdy, and comfortable. The pants are made with a durable water repellent finish, wrinkle resistance, abrasion resistant, and UPF 50+.
Overall, these pants work great for all weather. If you get too hot change into shorts. If you get cold, change back to pants. These pants are durable and offer great stretch moving with you every step. Only downside we found was that the fit was pretty snug around the legs and thighs.
Best Cargo Pants
Eddie Bauer Guide Pro
Eddie Bauer Guide Pro pants are designed to work for all seasons and provide stretch, comfort, moisture wicking, and sun blocking material. The fit is fairly tapered leaving some room at the waist while having a modern fit around the calves and ankles.
The best feature is the secure-zip cargo pockets to help make sure your gear doesn’t fall out. Other features included are the DWR finish which helps to repel moisture. In addition to odor control to help prevent stinky odors. The fit is athletic which provides enough room in the seat and tapered fit down to the ankles.
Best Hiking Joggers for Men
Columbia Tech Trail Knit Jogger Pants
For a pair of joggers these pants work well for hikes on the trail. They are very comfortable and stretch every uphill or downhill step. The Columbia Tech Trail Knit jogger feature a comfortable drawcord waistband, ribbed cuffs, and multiple zippered pockets.
Overall, these joggers work great for day hikes and even double as my favorite lounging pants. The fit is fairly slim, so it is pretty snug on the thighs and down to the ankles. Only downside is that they can get a little warm and aren’t the most breathable pants.
How to Choose Hiking Pants
When choosing hiking pants you want to think about where you will be wearing your pants and what your intended use will be. Listed down below are the main factors we like to look at when we buy hiking pants.
- Weight & Thickness
Different fabrics affect the wear of the pants. You’ll find that most pants are made up of nylon and elastane or spandex. Nylon is a great material because it tends to be very durable and breathable. Elastane is great because it allows the fabric to be more flexible and move with you during more technical parts of the outdoors.
Polyester is another common fabric that will sometimes be included in a fabric blend. It tends to be better at wicking moisture and allows for the fabric to be more breathable. It doesn’t lend as well in durability compared to Nylon.
Cotton is sometimes in the fabric blend; it tends to be very soft and comfortable and doesn’t tend to rub as much in dry warmer climates. However, cotton tends to hold water and doesn’t wick sweat as well. In colder and wet climates cotton can actually be dangerous because when wet the material freezes quickly.
Having a good fit for hiking pants is pretty important because you ultimately want the right fit when choosing pants. Depending on your body you’ll want to look at different fits that match your needs. When it comes to most hiking pants usually the standard is a regular fit which will run fairly loose all around.
For men’s hiking pants our favorite fit is athletic, or taper fitted pants because it offers more room for the bottom and thighs while gradually tapering around the ankles. For slimmer individuals a slim fitted pants or a taper/athletic fit is a great option.
There are multiple styles of pants available that really just depend on what your intended use might be. The styles of hiking pants are fairly similar to the styles you find in your regular pants. When it comes to styles of hiking pants there are a few to choose from.
Are your standard pants that are often worn. Usually, a few pockets with regular build somewhat loose fit and no taper.
Provide the option to make her pants into a pair of shorts or a pair of pants. Most pants today have it where you just have to unzip them, and they become shorts. This works well for sunny hot days or times when you might have to cross water
Very similar to convertible in that you roll the pant leg up instead of unzipping a portion. The legs usually have buttons or tabs to secure the roll. Also, makes it easier to rock the pants in a capri style.
Weight & Thickness
Weight isn’t usually an important thing when it comes to hiking pants. However, breathability is important. In warmer weather generally you will want a lighter thinner and more breathable pair of pants.
In the winter you may want a pair of pants that are a little heavier and thicker. If you tend to get hot during hikes, then you might want to opt on the breathable thinner side and just layer when it’s colder out.
Hiking pants come with many features nowadays. If you want pockets, you can get pants with extra pockets. Some hiking pants have DWR making them water resistant which is nice to have during a shower in the backcountry. Though all clothes offer shading from the sun some hiking pants even have higher ratings for sun proofing.
This can come in handy if you are looking to store some items on you. I don’t like to overload my pockets, but I do like to put light personal items in them. I often like to opt for pants with at least a few pockets, however this is more of a preference though.
In hiking pants durable water repellent (DWR) is a common water-resistant coating. It helps to make the pants not retain moisture and helps to repel water, so you don’t get soaked. Most hiking pants have some type of DWR coating on them. However, it is always a good idea to at least check the specs if this is a feature you want.
Ultraviolet protection factor (UPF) is the rating in which how much of the sun’s rays will penetrate the fabric. All clothes provide some sun protection but in general the higher the UPF rating the more protective the clothing is.
Hiking with Jeans
Most people ask about hiking in jeans, I don’t believe there is anything wrong with hiking in jeans. Most modern jeans are a blend of cotton and elastane so offer good durability and movement. For the most part you could definitely hike in jeans and be comfortable on a short hike with good weather.
Before synthetic blended pants people hiked in jeans all of the time. If you are planning to hike in jeans. I would recommend not hiking in cold/wet weather. Also, I wouldn’t recommend hiking in jeans for long strenuous trails. But short hikes with good weather jeans would be alright but, not hiking pants will be the best option.
Hiking Pants vs Shorts
It can often be hard to pick shorts or hiking pants. Wearing hiking pants will offer many advantages such as sun protection. And also, protection against abrasion from branches, brush, and/or rocks.
Shorts are great for those trails without a lot of brush or branches. They offer much more mobility and breathability during warmer hikes. But, during those in between seasons or temperatures it can be hard to pick between shorts and hiking pants.
During these in between seasons or temps. Layering becomes an effective solution which allows for the best of worlds. Though, if you tend to get hot or don’t like the layer idea. You may benefit from convertible hiking pants. Which works great since you can easily swap between styles.
Hopefully, this guide was helpful for finding the best men’s hiking pants. If you have any recommendations or any questions, feel free to leave them in the comments down below. If you believe someone else may find this guide helpful, give it a share. Stay safe and hike more, worry less!
Editor note: This post was originally published December 19, 2021, and has been updated for more accuracy and comprehensiveness