Review - Mountain Hardwear – Men’s Chockstone Midweight Active Pants

MSRP: $100 CAD

Pros

Highly water resistant, highly wind resistant, highly abrasion resistant, extremely flexible, zippered hand pockets, good zippered thigh pocket, warm, has slight stretch to them, one-handed waist adjustment, single belt loop, great fit, stylish, basically everything about them.

Cons

Too warm for hot summer days (otherwise, I’d wear them 365 days a year!), when they get wet, they take a while to dry

Fit

Straight legged

Would I recommend?

Hands down, best pants I own. I’ve actually got multiple pairs in different colours.

When I first got these pants, they were shipped to me. Somehow, I was accidentally shipped the women’s version of this pant. I didn’t realize this until I put them on and saw how tight they were, but was so blown away by how comfortable I felt in them, and how much mobility I had in them, that I almost kept the women’s version. I now own 2 pairs of the Chockstone Midweight and am considering getting a third because I wear them almost exclusively on every trip I go on, and they are constantly in rotation in my in-the-city life. If I had 7 pairs, I would likely not wear any other pants.

Let me list off the reasons why I love these pants so much. Firstly, they are, simply put, unbelievably comfortable. No matter what the activity – climbing, biking, hiking, trekking through snow in the winter, paddling, whatever – these pants move exceptionally well with me.

They are also incredibly durable. I’ve worn these pants at least once a week (many times as much as 5 days in a week while on trip – I mean, who changes while they’re tripping) for the past 3 years, and I’ve worn them while crack climbing, amongst every other activity I do (picture jamming my knee into a crack in the rock and relaying on the friction to hold me in place), and to this day, they still look and perform incredibly well! I have no concern about them ripping anytime soon.

The DWR (Durable Water Repellent) treatment is incredible. Again, 3 years into their use, and without any re-treating, when the rains first come, I can still see the water droplets beading off. The first time I wore the shorts version of these pants (and yes, they’re so good, I ended up getting the shorts version), I ended up at a pier with some friends. Everyone jumped in, so I decided to test the DWR treatment on the brand-spanking new shorts. I jumped in, swam around for a bit, and then jumped out. When I got out, the pants were bone dry. No exaggeration, no lie. Bone dry.

On top of that, they’ve got all the features you’d want in order to feel good. It’s got 3 reasonable-sized zippered pockets that are accessible with a harness, one of which is a thigh pocket that is easy to access while carrying a backpack. A single belt loop – even though these pants do not require or take a belt. I imagine it’s for some well-thought out reason, but I always am simply grateful to have somewhere to quickly hang a carabineer.  It has a slightly fleecy inside to keep you slightly more insulated and warm. It’s got some pretty solid wind resistance. I once forgot my snow pants on a winter trip, and barely noticed a difference, even though we were sludging through knee-high snow. All-in-all, I feel like Mountain Hardwear has really nailed this pant.

There are two limitations that I have noticed about these pants, and one is not really a limitation. Firstly, as the pant is exposed to more and more water during the same period of time, eventually the water gets absorbed by the pant. Once the pants do get wet, they are not as quick-drying as some of my other, thinner, quick drying pants. I imagine that’s because of the additional layer of insulation on the inside. The second thing is that because of their little bit of insulation, they are sometimes too hot for heavy activity during the summer. That of course, is the downside to having a warm pant that you can wear comfortably in the winter.

Asides for those two things, I sincerely believe that these are the best pants I have, and so far, have ever owned. I cannot recommend these pants enough.

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