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The Specialized Trail Pants come in both men’s and women’s versions. The women’s ones do not fit me – they are comically short. If you are a chunk shorter than me (I’m 175cm) then you might get on with the women’s ones.
I, however, like the men’s. I’ll go further: I love them.
- Price: £110.00
- From: Specialized
- Stay put
- Tight ankles may annoy some
- Black with no reflective details
This is especially notable because I had basically given up on trousers. Between trying to find them long enough, that fit at the waist, and that don’t show your bum, or dig into your belly – I’d just started wearing dungarees (POC Consort MTB Dungaree usually). Altogether easier and more comfortable (apart from in event/festival toilets…).
But these – these are great, on the bike and off. Perfect for someone like me who often ends up in the same clothes all day long, switching between bike, work, school runs, and back to the bike.
These are not winter trousers. They’re shoulder season and nettles-in-the-summer trousers. The fabric is tough enough to withstand some unintended interactions with the ground, but light enough to be comfortable without rubbing or feeling heavy when wet.
Admittedly I reach for waterproof options when I know things will be wet, so I’ve not ground these into a muddy saddle ride after ride, but they’ve been worn and washed probably once a week for the last year and are still looking good.
There’s a decent amount of stretch to the fabric, which makes movement comfortable. Unlike some stretch fabrics, these pants don’t need to be worn tight to fit. They’re like comfortable trousers which stretch when you want them to, rather than being stretched all the time. A great mix.
Up the top end, around the waist, you get a reassuring ratchet faster. I’ve decided I really like these – they’re secure and provide a little bit of extra adjustment, so you can get the fit just right. You also get a mesh panel on the inside, with ventilation holes cut in the outer fabric – helping keep your lower back from getting too sweaty. I like that it’s just the ratchet to keep them in place, no silicone, which I find can irritate my skin.
Two zippered pockets on the front allow the secure carrying of stuff. On the left thigh you’ve got a pocket which is the right size for a phone.
Inside the thighs are more of those vent holes to stop you overheating. In the middle, around the knees, there’s just enough articulation cut into the fabric to fit a slim knee pad without stretching the fabric. A bulkier pad will fit too, thanks to the stretch fabric, but you’ll have more sausagey stretch around the knees.
At the bottom comes what might be the point of controversy: the elasticated ankle panels. These are tight. Tight as in put your socks on first, then these pants, because it’s hard to get your socks pulled up under the ankles otherwise.
When it comes to the end of a ride, you’ll probably find yourself peeling trousers and socks off together – getting wet socks out from under the ankles is a feat of strength and yoga that’s beyond me. But that’s not a complaint – the nice snug ankles mean there’s no flapping around your cranks, and the trousers stay nicely in place without any riding up or draughts around the ankles.
I find the Specialized Trail Pants really comfortable, and a fairly normal looking cut. They’re so comfortable and normal that I’ll often wear them off the bike too. I’ve been bouldering, hiking, and to the shops in them because they’re just so comfortable and versatile. They wash well and dry quickly. Have I mentioned that they’re comfortable? The first trousers in a long while to challenge my love of dungarees.
|Tested:||by Hannah for 12 months|