Best pants for outdoor life

The Best Pants For Your Outdoor Life

Just like for our kids, having the best gear to get outside and moving is important for us Mamas too! As a team, we have been testing out Title Nine pants for outdoor adventure that will work especially for cooler temperatures. We especially love how many of these come in lengths.

Who Wears the Pants? Mountain Mamas!

Having kids is hard on a woman’s body. It generally makes us moms hate wearing pants. But, as much as we love skorts, dresses, and leggings, sometimes you just need a good pair of pants for your outdoor adventures.

As any mom knows, finding pants that A) fit and B) are comfortable, is extremely difficult. We admit that more than one tear has been shed in our fitting rooms, as we have struggled to find a pair of pants that fits our new bodies, post-baby.

We put our friends at Title Nine to the test, asking them to find us pants for a wide variety of outdoor adventures.

Title Nine certainly didn’t disappoint! We found that they have styles to fit every preference.

We had various requests from our testers, including no buttons or zippers, long and short lengths, curvy figures, slender fits, high-rise waists, boot-compatible, and warmth. Title Nine managed to find each of us our perfect pair of pants.

As a member of Title Nine’s affiliate program, we earn from qualifying purchases. As always, these reviews are exactly what we tell our family and friends and it doesn’t cost you a dime!


The Best Pants for Outdoor Adventuring

Best for Trail-to-Town: Clamber Pant

Emily: These rocketed straight to the top of my favorite-hiking-pants list. And my favorite-travel-pants list. And my favorite lounge-around-the house-pants list.

In fact, I just packed a bag for a two-and-a-half week trip, and these are the only hiking pants I bothered putting in my suitcase (and we do a lot of hiking).

Turns out, I love the fabric waistband—it is extremely comfortable and the wide elastic keeps it in place without needing a belt (though it does have belt loops). These pants have SIX pockets, which is great for me because I love having things handy on my person, and I especially love the two easy-access slide pockets on the thighs.

The ankle-cinch doesn’t get in the way of sliding the leg openings over my hiking boots and is unnoticeable when it is completely loosened (in other words, no bunching ankle unless you want it). The shape of the leg fits like it is tailored for me—fitted but not snug—and the pants stretch to allow total freedom of movement while still holding their shape over time.

The fabric is durable yet lightweight and it’s easy to brush dirt off. And bless Title Nine, the Clamber comes in long and short inseams for those of us who don’t fit the average mold!

If pressed to come up with criticisms for this pant, I would note that the leg opening doesn’t allow much room to go over my boots—the straight leg just fits. And the back zippered pockets are just wide enough for my hand to slide into which makes it a little abrasive against the zipper. But that is really nitpicking.

I’m still giving these Clamber pants a resounding five stars!

Ginny climbing Colorado’s Mt Huron, in her trusty Clamber Pants.
Best pants for outdoor life
Emily hiking in her Clamber pants.

Best for Town-to-Trail: Clamberista Pant

Jackie: The Clamberista pants are the twin of the button-fly Clamber pant, just with a different waistband. Same cut, same great hiking pants.

I love that there are no snaps or buckles to irritate you. Instead, the Clamberista has a wide, flexible waistband. The waist is also pretty high, which is great when you’re a mom and are doing lots of bending over and picking up to help the kids.

The fabric is nice and light for hot days, with lots of stretch and a DWR finish to help with sprinkles of rain or apple juice. The pockets aren’t too bulky but keep my items secure.

The only drawback (in my opinion) is the fleece-lined pockets. Normally I would love this feature, but since the rest of the fabric is light I haven’t worn them much in the cold.


Best for Shoulder-Season Adventures: Ascent Pant

Ginny: I have been rocking Title Nine pants for years, and love the Cold Killer and Clamber Pant. BUT… sometimes you just need that perfect in-between pant.

Sometimes it’s too cold for a breathable hiking pant, but too warm for a full-on winter pant. That’s where the Ascent pant is in it’s perfect element!

The body of the Ascent pant is a heavier material that feels like your favorite pair of yoga pants. It’s a stretchy and comfortable knit, that feels equally comfy when on the trail or lounging around the house (which, let’s be real, doesn’t happen too often).

The sides and lower legs, however, are a tougher abrasion-resistant nylon, that holds up to dirt, snow, mud, and scrapes from your YakTrax.

The Ascent pant has tons of pocket space, with hand warmer pockets, back pockets, and 2 side-leg zip-pockets that fit a cell phone securely. It also has an ankle cinch, which comes in handy on bike rides. The fit is particularly forgiving of my curvy, apple-shaped body!

Perfect for cool-weather hiking, mountain biking, climbing, or playground romping, the Ascent pant can tackle pretty much anything in both comfort and style. These also come in long and short inseams to fit any body type.

My only criticism of these highly versatile pants is the waistband. It’s wide and comfortable, but is only attached at the back seam, which can allow the elastic to twist. This just seems like lazy construction and I found it annoying. I added two stitches on either side of the pant, which solved the problem in two-seconds flat.

Ginny hiking with YakTrax in the Ascent Pants, on a balmy (for Montana) 30-degree day.

Best for Cold Weather Aerobic Activity: Cold Killer Pant

Amelia: The Cold Killer pants are my favorite for Nordic skiing, but are also great for running and snowshoeing.

Not only do they stretch and breathe well on the backside but also have a protective shell on the front to whisk away snowflakes and rain. I love that when I need to kneel in the snow to put on kids’ skis, my legs don’t get wet.

The best thing about them is the fact that they come in long and short inseams for a perfect fit for women of all heights. The zippered pocket is placed a bit lower on the thigh which helps for comfort and is large enough to accommodate a smart phone.

Only downside? I wish the ankle cuffs were a bit wider to fit over my Nordic boots with a little more room. Even better? An adjustable strap so I could cinch them down over my boots.

Amelia, beating the snow and wind on a Nordic adventure in her Cold Killers.

Best for Winter Outdoor Adventure: Valkyrie Pant

Stephanie: This pant is my go-to pant for winter weather because it is so versatile. This is the pant you want on zero degree days when you have lots of errands to run.

It’s also the pant you want when you’re outside freezing your tail off watching kids sporting events. And you’ll find this pant also works great for it’s intended purpose—winter hiking (and a plethora of other winter activities).

I love how warm and cozy this pant is while still being somewhat sophisticated. You can get away with wearing it to the grocery store after an outdoor workout and still feel like you dressed up for the day. The outer material is durable (perfect for repelling snow and rain) and the inside of the pant is warm and cozy like your favorite fleece.

The side pockets are easily my favorite feature. The top side pocket is a fleece lined hand warmer pocket and there’s a discreet zippered pocket right underneath it. They’re both nice, wide pockets. The placement of the pockets on the side of the pants is why they are perfect for hiking and running. You can carry your keys, cellphone, wallet etc. and everything stays dry and tucked in tight without throwing off your stride.

I’ve worn these pants running, hiking, and walking in 30-50 degree weather. They’ve kept my legs warm and held up well in all activities.

Initially, I questioned if I should trade in my pant for the next size because the pants fit a little tight around my hips. However, I kept the size I normally wear and after wearing it a few more times I was, happy with the fit. I like that they feel snug but not too tight that you can’t fit another layer underneath.

Stephanie moving comfortably in her Valkyrie pants on a chilly day.

Best for Snow Sports: Snow Slayer

Valerie: I’ll admit, I’m not a pants gal, but when the cold weather hits I reach for the Snow Slayers . They are straight-up COMFORTABLE!

Heck, I’ve even been known to wear them around the house for the rest of the day after coming in from cold-weather adventures.

The fit is spot on for me. Fitted, but not tight. They give in just the right places and stay up, even when I’m wearing a pack for hours. I hate my crack-back showing, but it’s especially un-fun when it’s 5 degrees outside, the wind is howling, and the snow is blowing sideways. Thanks for staying up, Snow Slayers!   

They’ve been cozy but not hot, hiking in Moab when the windchill put the daytime high in the single digits. The trim cuff stayed out of the chain ring when I wore them Fat Biking. And they were warm and comfortable snowshoeing in champagne powder in Colorado.

These are great all-around wintertime pants. If you’re looking for a do-it-all, super-comfortable, weather-proof softshell, winter adventure pant, look no further than the Snow Slayer. 

Valerie hiking in frigid temps in Moab.
Valerie takes on the snow with her Snow Slayers.

© 2019, Tales of a Mountain Mama. All rights reserved. Republication, in part or entirety, requires a link back to this original post and permission from the author.

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