Editor’s Note: This article was originally published in Overland Journal’s Summer 2022 Issue
Purchased for a trip to Saudi Arabia, the first test of these jeans was on the plane departing Toronto. We were giddy to be on the Boeing 777 and celebrated with the finest red wine. The thin plastic cup immediately cracked and spilled 2021 Malbec all over my brand-new, coriander-brown pants. I wiped off the residue in haste and rushed to the bathroom to find the wine had almost shed itself already. A quick wipe with a paper towel, and they were pristine once again.
Founded in 1973 by Yvon Chouinard, Patagonia produces clothing for surfing, skiing, fly fishing, climbing, trail running, and other outdoor sports. You’ve surely seen fleeces or puffy jackets adorned with their logo—a silhouette of Mount Fitz Roy. Patagonia encourages consumers to “Buy Less, Demand More” and talks the talk by designing clothing with organic and recycled materials that are durable and repairable. The goal is that people buy fewer items that last longer.
These pants were designed to be as comfortable as a favorite pair of jeans but still have the performance expected from technical outdoor apparel. Recommended for lean-to-medium builds, the slim-straight fit allows room for plenty of movement from the waist to the knees. The straight cut from the knees to ankles provides ample room to be pulled over hiking boots.
Made of solid-weft, 67 percent organic cotton and 33 percent polyester comfort-stretch twill, the wicking finish does more than repel red wine; it allows sweat to be drawn from the skin. This attribute, along with the flexible material, makes these jeans a perfect choice for cool-weather hiking. When the sun went down over the Red Sea and temperatures dipped close to freezing, the “handwarmer pockets” (apparently more than just marketing jargon) did their job well, protecting my fingers from howling desert winds.
To save space and weight, I packed one pair of pants for our Saudi adventure. After 20 days of constant wear (yep, every day for almost three weeks sans laundry break), they continued to shed dirt and spilled drinks along with odors.
Upon returning to Canada, these continued to be my do-it-all pants. I regularly hiked through the melting snow of early spring and was happy to wear them to casual work meetings. I expect that with constant abuse (such as on an abrasive climbing wall, indoor or out), the thin twill would see premature wear, but for now, I’ll continue wearing them for most of my daily activities.
Designed with classic styling, these twill jeans look at home on city streets or backcountry trails. At $99, they aren’t inexpensive, but the Ironclad Guarantee means that if they don’t live up to your expectations, Patagonia will repair, replace, or refund your purchase.
$99 | patagonia.com
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