Testing Mens Travel Pants in Columbia

The Best Men’s Travel Pants of 2021

We’ve tested the best wrinkle-resistant, quick-drying, and comfortable men’s travel pants of the year. Pack your bags and get ready for adventure.

We’re all chomping at the bit to get back out there and travel. With planes starting to line up on the tarmac, we’ve got your backside covered with the best travel pants on the market.

From the Andean cloud forests to deep desert canyons to long backcountry road trips (and everyday tasks like punching the keyboard at work), these pants have been tested to tackle any adventure and do it all in style.

And if you’re looking for something more active, check out our picks for the best hiking pants of 2021.

Scroll through to see all of our recommended buys or jump to the category you’re looking for:

The Best Travel Pants of 2021

Best Overall Travel Pants: Bluffworks Ascender Chino

Bluffworks Ascender Chino

Last year we listed Bluffworks’ Ascender Chino ($125) as a runner-up on our best travel pant list. They received top scores nearly across the board. They’re light, wrinkleproof, and comfortable, and the Ascender pocket game transcended the pack. But we didn’t put them through the wringer enough to award them long-term durability.

After a year of road-tripping, hiking, foraging for morels, and even skiing in them, we confidently elevated Bluffworks to the top of our list.

You won’t find the Ascenders through big retailers. You’ll have to buy these direct from Bluffworks. But you can take comfort in knowing you’re buying an incredible amount of thoughtful design and experience that went into making the Ascender Chino a top choice for travelers.

Our pants arrived in nice packaging and with speedy delivery. Out of the box, the attention to detail is spectacular, particularly with regards to pockets — all 10 of them.

Multiple hidden pockets ride inside the front pockets, including a hidden money pocket that’s accessed through the concealed left front zipper pocket. That’s right, they have pockets inside pockets. This inside pocket also has a second sleeve you can access from inside the pant.

Out back, a zip pocket sits on the left. Behind the right pocket rides a third sleeve to sheath a device.

The Ascenders are available in straight-leg or a tailored slim fit. The material is stretchy, but there are no rubber fibers woven in. The give is in the weaving of the material itself. In our opinion, this makes the pants more durable over the long haul. There’s no elastic to break down.

Bluffworks Ascender Chino
Photo credit: Bluffworks

The panels are stitched together to create an incredibly comfortable pant. They’re light enough to wash and hang dry overnight to rinse and repeat another day.

And this year, we did a lot of just that in Idaho’s backcountry. Hiking through scrub, backpacking with kids, pinch-hitting as a ski pant. After a year of hard use, the Ascenders still look new, including all the zippers — they’ve all hung in there well.

The pocket number simply amazed us (and the result is questionably overengineered). We initially struggled to find them all. Once we did, we stood in awe, scratching our heads, asking ourselves, “What would we put in them all?”

But at the end of the day, their function is to ward off sticky fingers, and it does this well without compromising the look or feel of the pant. The Ascenders have a classy, timeless style and look pressed after repeated wash and wear.

The ability to secure your essentials makes this a true travel pant we’d reach for on any trip abroad. The downside of the Ascender pants is that they’re highly sought after, and popular colors in slim sizes can be hard to get. But they’re worth the wait.

Still worried about buying online? Bluffworks offers free shipping and returns.

Specs
  • Fabric: 100% polyester
  • Fabric Weight: 180 gsm
  • Fit: Runs large
  • DWR: Yes

Bottom line: For type-A travelers who want to keep their everyday carry game tight.

Check Price at Bluffworks

Best Budget Travel Pants: UNIONBAY Rainier Travel Chinos

UnionBay Ranier Chino Travel Pant

These lightweight pants are a steal at just $30 (or less depending on the size and color combination). These chino pants come in four colors: charcoal, navy, black, and khaki.

And for being such a bargain, they work surprisingly well. The nylon-spandex blend offers just enough stretch for a full range of motion, and we like how quick-drying they are.

And with a DWR coating and UPF of 50, you could even wear these hiking. They probably won’t last as long as other higher-quality pants on our list, but if you’re looking for a budget pair of travel pants, these are it.

Specs
  • Fabric: 94% nylon, 6% spandex
  • Fabric weight: 173 gsm
  • Fit: True to size
  • DWR: Yes

Bottom line: Cheapest pants on this list; a lightly stretchy, quick-drying bargain.

Check Price at AmazonCheck Price at Walmart

The Best Gifts for Travelers in 2021
The Best Gifts for Travelers in 2021

Looking for the perfect gift for a traveler in your life? Our experts have rounded up the best travel gifts and gadgets for every budget. Read more…

Best 5-Pocket Style Pants: Western Rise Evolution

Western Rise Evolution

The Evolution ($149) has become a GearJunkie staff staple around the office. Simple, functional, durable — it’s what we recommend to all our friends who ask us, “What would you bring on the road?” The jean-like five-pocket design wears more like denim but has the durability of a hiking pant.

At the core of the pant is the nylon-elastane blend with a traditional jean cut. The nylon fibers are softened by running them through an air-texturized process and then weaving them into a dynamic yarn.

The material has a durable weave that mimics denim (and feels less “khaki”). The DWR coating is outstanding and kept us dry while strolling historic Ljubljana before the pandemic.

Reach around back, and you’ll find a double pocket on the right, with a hidden zipper pocket that’s large enough to swallow your passport. Western Rise expanded the front coin pocket and made it big enough to holster even the largest iPhone.

Since its Kickstarter launch a few years ago, the Evolution has received overwhelmingly positive ratings from buyers. We have to agree with them. The styling is tops, and the durability paired with breathability hits the perfect sweet spot.

After your trip, roll them up and watch them disappear in your luggage. They tick all the boxes for traveling and were the envy of our photographer while cycling through Colombia.

We ranked all pants on a 60-point scale. Only three pants crested the 50-point mark. The  Evolution took first the past 2 years running and is still a standout choice, with a total of 51 points. It falls a point below Bluffworks merely because the material tends to wrinkle more easily.

If you want that Western Rise styling but with a wrinkle-resistant fabric, their Diversion pant ($138) is also a great pick. The double-knit canvas weighs 286 gsm, which makes it more durable overall, but it sacrifices packability.

Specs
  • Fabric: Supplex (96% nylon, 4% elastane), woven in Sweden, cut and sewn in the USA
  • Fabric weight: 170 gsm
  • Fit: True to size
  • Weight: 11 oz.
  • DWR: Yes

Bottom line: For travelers who prefer jean styling but don’t want to compromise performance fabric; a fantastic option for warm-weather travel.

Check Price at Western RiseCheck Price at Amazon

Best Chino Style Pants: Huckberry Proof Nomad Slim

Huckberry Nomad Pant

Huckberry can always be trusted to bring style and function. Their in-house atelier makes some of our favorite go-to apparel. They always make us look good while we’re on the road.

Their Proof Nomad ($60 on sale) takes the classic chino and brings it into the 21st century with a breathable Japanese Toray twill. The polyester fabric is woven with two-way mechanical stretch. It’s soft to the touch and has a slight give when you pull the material laterally. This gives the pants a fantastic fit around the legs without bagging out.

For added durability, the pants are treated with a DWR. Liquids quickly bead up and roll off the fabric. To protect your essentials, a large hidden zipper pocket is sewn into the right front pocket. The deep back pockets snap shut with matte black hardware, sealing the covert look.

The Nomad is offered in both straight leg and slim. We found the slim-fit to be the best-fitting tapered chinos tested this year. There’s no awkward binding around athletic quads or calves. The material smartly wraps around the body’s form. You get clean-looking pants with ample mobility and wrinkle resistance.

In our overall ranking, the Nomads tied with Western Rise’s Evolution pant for a total score of 51 out of 60. They dress up a little more, but at 16 ounces, they were one of the heavier pants on the list. This dinged the pants on packability, but it didn’t seem to affect the pant’s ability to dry overnight.

If price helps move the needle to buy, the Nomads are on sale now for $60, putting some spending money back in those large pockets.

Specs
  • Fabric: 100% polyester
  • Fit: True to size
  • Weight: 16 oz.
  • DWR: Yes

Bottom line: For travelers who prefer a chino worthy of an adventure.

Check Price at Huckberry

Best Pants for Adventure Travel: Off The Grid Trailblazer Pro 2.0

Off the grid Trailblazer Pro Desert Palm

Seems there’s no shortage of marketing agencies tooling trousers over vintage 4x4s. We love a Defender as much as the next guy, but these are the pants we’d choose to wear on that shoot.

Founder Josh Patterson, former Head Men’s Designer at prAna (and creative behind the prAna’s iconic Stretch Zion Straight Fit pant), launched out on his own in 2018 to start Off The Grid (OTG). OTG spent months in the field working with search-and-rescue teams to tease out what goes into the perfect adventure pant. So it’s no surprise the Trailblazer Pros ($84) has sharp attention to detail.

The four-way stretch material is reinforced with threads that were originally developed to strengthen parachutes. All major seams are flat-locked and double-stitched. The pockets are lined with durable mesh nylon. The front closes with a button toggled to the pant with nylon webbing. The overall design marries ripstop durability with functional mobility.

The pants are brandished with eight pockets. Four ride on the backside, including a pair of device pockets that angle up, making them easy to access. Up front, the horizontal hand pockets are deep and have an extra layer of nylon sewn into the collar to reinforce the knife clip.

Both cargo pockets zip shut and tag to the pant leg to prevent flopping around. All zippers feature nylon teeth so you can breeze through TSA.

We’ve spent weeks wearing our OTGs doing hard work on the knees and put thousands of miles road tripping around the mountain west. Our editor at AutoWise, Bryon Dorr, almost exclusively wears his Trailblazer Pros while traveling.

Dorr shared, “I’ve sampled many of their pieces for years now and have loved nearly all of them. The Trail Blazer 2.0 is a great evolution of a quality staple in my wardrobe. Comfortable, durable, sharp-looking, and lots of utility define these go-anywhere, do-anything pants.”

What they have in durability, they give up in breathability. We found they didn’t breathe as well as other pants on the list. And the durable fabric adds some swoosh in the step. But the lightweight fabric styles a balanced compromise of durability and comfort, making them our choice pant for adventurous travel.

If you’re looking for a functional but durable pant designed for adventure, we highly recommend picking up a pair from OTG.

Specs
  • Fabric: 94% nylon, 6% spandex
  • Fabric weight: 170 gsm
  • Fit: True to size
  • Weight: 12 oz.
  • DWR: Yes

Bottom line: For adventurous travelers who are rough on their pants.

Check Price at Off The Grid

Most Eco-Friendly Travel Pants: prAna ReZion Alameda Pants

prAna ReZion Alameda

Anyone planning the ultimate adventure travel getaway should check out prAna’s Zion line. The material can handle climbing, hiking, biking, camping, and city sightseeing with ease and style. It’s no wonder they’re a perennial favorite. Year after year, review after review, the Zion — like its canyon namesake — stands the test of time.

This year, we’ve been reaching for prAna’s ReZion Chino. It takes all the great cut and feel we love in the Zion, but it’s now made with Bluesign-approved materials and recycled nylon fabric with a PFC-free DWR coating.

As its name suggests, the Alameda ($79) is the most city-friendly pant of prAna’s Zion lineup. It’s not as durable as their Stretch Zion line, but you get the comfort, flexibility, and just enough protection from the occasional rain.

The four-pocket chino has a concealed fifth zipper pocket that runs down the right thigh. Out of sight and away from the hip, the pocket has enough room to hold a passport. The zipper placement makes it really easy to access while seated without spilling the contents.

Scoring a 49 out of 60, these pants almost made the top cut. They are the most breathable and likely the most comfortable pant we tested. While the Zion ran a little large last year, this round the ReZion nailed the width.

There are buyer comments on the length, and these do tend to run a touch long. If you are between sizes, we’d size on the shorter length. And we found the ReZion material tends to wrinkle after washing, and their limited pockets kept it from getting top billing.

For summer travels, the Alamedas are also available in shorts ($69).

Specs
  • Fabric: 95% recycled nylon, 5% spandex
  • Fabric weight: 172 gsm
  • Fit: True to size
  • Weight: 12 oz.
  • DWR: Yes

Bottom line: Eco-friendly pants styled for the city.

Check Price at BackcountryCheck Price at prAna

Best Denim Travel Pants: Aviator — The Best Travel Jeans in the World

Aviator Best Travel Jeans

It’s a bold statement to name your pant “The Best Travel Jeans in the World” ($125), but Aviator walks the talk and the name speaks for itself.

Offered in a variety of fades in both slim and straight cut, these Aviators were born out of the soul for denim and a passion for travel. The pant has a whopping eight pockets, but you wouldn’t immediately know it.

Three zipper pockets hide inside the traditional pockets — two concealed in the back and one up front inside the left pocket — each large enough to hold a passport. All pocket zippers use a nylon YKK zipper. And the coin pocket on the right is large enough to snug even the largest iPhone.

The pant is primarily made from a summer-weight cotton blend that is soft to the touch but with a little give, thanks to the spandex. It has a DWR, but it won’t dry as fast as fully synthetic pants. But it’s supremely comfortable and can walk out of coach into your port of entry in style.

Aviator is running pants at 25% off right now during its spring sale and tossed in custom hemming. You’re guaranteed a sharp-fitting pant at a great price.

Specs
  • Fabric: 77% cotton, 16% polyester, 5% rayon, 2% spandex
  • Fit: True to size, offered in slim and straight
  • Weight: 22 oz. (on our scales)
  • DWR: Yes

Bottom line: For denim-heads who can’t leave home without a pair of jeans.

Check Price at Aviator USA

Best of the Rest

Chrome Industries Brannan Pant

Chrome industries Brannan

Chrome knows a thing or two about comfort. A dedicated bike commuter brand, its iconic seatbelt buckle messenger bag is proudly slung over couriers threading urban streets. True to the brand’s roots, Chrome’s Brannan ($112) is a slim-cut pant with an exceptional fit that moves with every step.

This durable chino-style pant has vertical pockets that angle horizontally just long enough to clip a knife. A fifth zipper pocket rides down the left hip. It’s large enough to cache a passport or iPhone X.

Cycling pants are designed for durability. Pockets ride higher to keep your kit from bouncing with every pedal stroke. The hand pockets are deep, but one of our quibbles with the Brannan — and there aren’t many — would be with the zipper pocket. The forward position can bind the contents in the hip when sitting.

Like most high-end pants, the Brannans are offered in one length. Unless you have longer legs, you’ll need to tailor these pants.

But the hefty material is super durable and supremely fitted, providing room to move without sacrificing style or comfort. The durability takes away from the material’s breathability. To compensate, Chrome added some discreet vents to help let heat spill out on hot summer nights. But they are more appropriate for cooler weather.

Like all Chrome pants, their straight-leg cut veers more tapered, threading the line from work to bike to brew. Of course, should you decide to ride the Green Bike or Bird Scooter back to the hostel, Chrome has striped a reflective band inside both legs. Turn the cuffs up, and you’ll be seen at night.

Specs
  • Fabric: 94% nylon, 6% spandex
  • Fit: True to size; slim fit with straight leg
  • Weight: 15 oz. (on our scales)
  • DWR: Yes

Bottom line: Not just for cyclists, the Brannan is a great pick for any traveler who values form, function, and durability in a comfortable pant.

Check Price at AmazonCheck Price at Chrome Industries

Rapha Technical Trousers

Rapha Technical Trousers

Rapha has elevated cycling to aspirational levels. The brand exudes a lifestyle on two wheels.

The Technical Trouser ($150) is part of Rapha’s lifestyle line and was designed for commuters who want a pant to ride to work but can carry enough swagger behind the desk.

On the outside, the durable fabric gives the foundation to the minimal detailing. Subtle hot pink hits give a nod to the Rapha pedigree, and the reflective logo screened inside the right leg shouts it in bold font. The right-side hi-vis makes sense for drivers in the UK, but we’d love to see it carried over to the left leg for “rest of world” customers.

True to all commuter pants, the pockets aren’t deep. This keeps the contents from banging around on your legs while pedaling. To keep the essentials from ejecting, both front pockets and the right rear pocket zips shut. The left rear pocket buttons shut and has a short Rapha Pink tag that pulls out for additional visibility on the road.

As commuter pants go, these are a bit baggy and get dinged for it in the customer comments. Their loss is your win. You get a more relaxed, slim-fitting pant that looks great for travel.

Of the two commuter pants on this list, Chrome and Rapha, the Technical Trousers are lighter weight but don’t have a DWR. This makes them better for summer travel where you don’t have to worry about them getting as wet. They were also the fastest drying pant we tested this year.

Specs
  • Fabric:  94% nylon, 6% spandex
  • Fit: True to size. Claimed relaxed, but more slim fit with ample room in the quads
  • Weight: 12 oz. (on our scales)
  • DWR: No

Bottom line: For those who want the added security of full-zip pockets.

Check Price at Rapha

Orvis O.O.O.O. Pants

Out Of Office, Office Pant 

Orvis caught us off guard this year with their incredibly comfortable O.O.O.O. (Out-Of-Office Office Pants). The five-pocket pant is constructed with a blend of cotton, nylon, and Lycra. But instead of adding a uselessly small coin pocket, the fifth pocket on the O.O.O.O. ($109) zips shut inside the right rear pocket. It’s plenty big enough to keep the wallet.

Like many pants on the list, these pants are treated with a DWR. It’s enough to shed a light splash. The lightweight material has some tooth to it like a denim pant.

The closest-feeling pant on the list would be Western Rise’s Evolution pant. Both breathe exceptionally well and are a great choice for traveling to warmer weather. The O.O.O.O. has a straighter cut and costs $40 less.

Another surprise was the reflective strips sewn into the cuffs. Orvis doesn’t pull it off as stylishly as Rapha does, but it’s a nice add for those who are ducking out of work early to cast a few lines as the sun sets. We didn’t expect that kind of detail from a fishing brand.

While the lightweight cotton blend breathes well, we found it takes longer to dry and tends to hold wrinkles longer. After a day of wearing them, though, the wrinkles smooth out.

We‘ve been wearing these pants all spring. They’re tough enough to negotiate riverside scrambles but dressy enough to swagger through boarding in style — our perfect idea of a summer vacation.

Specs
  • Fabric: 51% cotton, 45% nylon, 4% Lycra
  • Fabric weight: 180 gsm
  • Fit: True to size
  • Weight: 12.5 oz.
  • DWR: Yes

Bottom line: For adventurous travelers who are rough on their pants.

Check Price at Orvis

Public Rec Workday Pants

Pulbic rec workday pants

The Workday Pants ($98) were our clutch card for casual trips that occasionally required pants. They disappeared when folded up and always unpacked wrinkle-free.

The material has the highest percentage of elastic of all the pants we tested. As expected, this gives them fantastic range of motion. And the polyester is durable enough to tackle hard-wearing chores. They bounce back strong and never look tired.

Public Rec claims the cut is tapered to the knees then drops straight. We found the fit wonderful in the waist and upper legs, but they caught on athletic calves and tended to ride up socks. They also lack a DWR, which we appreciate in a travel pant.

The five-pocket design has a hidden sixth pocket that zips under the rear pocket, and the stylishly modern fit looks equally good at the office or after hours. Public Rec has always been a strong player in athleisure, but their Workday Pants bridges the other way into the burgeoning territory of workleisure.

  • Fabric: 90% polyester, 10% spandex
  • Fit: True to size, snugged our calves
  • Weight: 11 oz.
  • DWR: Yes
  • Bottom line: A smooth-faced, five-pocket pant that packs up light and dresses up sharp.

Check Price at Public Rec

686 Everywhere Slim

686 Everywhere

If you’re looking for a progressive take on the traditional chino, the Everywhere Slim ($95) is a svelte pant with ample storage and lots of freedom to move.

The Everywhere Slim has plenty of room up top without feeling baggy. Off the shelf, they taper somewhat aggressively around the calves, still managing to leave room around the ankle.

Tied up with the drawcord (which we loved), the Everywhere Slim pants fall closer to a jogger than a chino. The material gives after a few days of wear, relaxing into a comfortable fit.

The pants list 10 pockets, which is true, but we feel that’s a little ambitious. Five of them are small sleeves inside pockets to keep cards, coins, or cash. The front right coin pocket is an RFID-blocking security pocket, and it’s where you’ll want to put your credit card.

A large thigh pocket rides on the left and can swallow the pants when turned inside out. It will easily hold a phone and passport.

Plus, 686 offers the Everywhere in eight colors as well as a regular fit in addition to the slim.

Specs
  • Fabric: 92% nylon, 8% spandex
  • Fit: Spot on
  • Weight: 13 oz. (on our scales)
  • DWR: Yes

Bottom line: Muted skater styling for fashion-forward travelers.

Check Price at BackcountryCheck Price at evo

Eddie Bauer Guide Pro Pants

EddieBauer GuidePro WEB

Every year we ask our friend Tyler Benedict at Bikerumor what his favorite travel pant is. And every year he fires back with Eddie Bauer’s Guide Pro Pant ($80).

Benedict spends nearly 50% of his time traveling and reaches for his Eddie Bauer Guide Pro Pants for every trip. He estimates they’ve logged more than four trips around the sun and have become his go-to travel pants.

Benedict shared, “They’re lightweight, breathable, comfortable, have well-placed pockets, and they stretch with my movement. Their two-way-stretch Flexion material has just enough movement to take on everything from parkour over ruins to strenuous hiking.”

The two zippered cargo pockets are flush with the pants, avoiding the militarized look of gusseted external pockets. They’re angled for easy access and fit the largest iPhone with a case, which is a nice bonus (not all cargo pants and shorts can claim this anymore).

They have a DWR treatment that holds up over time, and there are 10 colors to choose from, all running about $80. But like they say about the weather, if you don’t like the price, just wait 5 minutes. Eddie Bauer runs its entire site at 40-50% off just about every other month. And the brand has a lifetime guarantee, which makes these pants an incredible value.

Specs
  • Fabric: 94% nylon, 6% spandex
  • Fit: Athletic, true to size
  • DWR: Yes

Bottom line: Durable travel pant for adventure-seeking travelers.

Check Price at AmazonCheck Price at Eddie Bauer

How We Tested the Pants

While COVID kept us stateside this year, we still managed to get out and put some miles on our pants. To find the best pants for travel this season, we started with pockets and materials. To even be considered on our list, pants need at least one pocket that can be zipped shut to safely hold our passport or wallet.

The hand pockets should be deep enough to keep keys and change from accidentally spilling out or have zippers that prevent mishaps. No joke, one pair of pants we tested (that’s not on this list) spit a wallet out at work without us even knowing it.

Hand pockets are either horizontal (like a pair of jeans), or vertical (like chinos). If you prefer to travel with an EDC, you’ll want a horizontal pocket to clip the knife.

If pockets are your priority, you don’t need to look past Bluffwork’s Ascender Chino. With 10 pockets discreetly hidden in and around the pants, there’s a place for everything.

We then evaluated each pant’s fit, breathability, durability, packability, and ability to bounce back from repeated wash and wears and unpacking.

We rated each category on a scale of 1-5 and then tallied the pants’ points across the board. The highest overall score took GearJunkie gold. If a pair does something exceptionally well, we’ve called out the stalwarts.

How to Choose Travel Pants

Fit

Regardless whether the pant is straight leg or slim, a good pant is one that follows the human form and doesn’t bag out after repeated washings or bloat when packed with your phone and keys. The length should fit your inseam or run longer so you can roll them up or get them tailored.

Almost every pant on our list hit a 5 for fit. If they didn’t, we’ve shared the cons. Both the Brannan and Alameda ran a little long, and the Brannan is only available in one length.

Public Rec’s Workday pant fit wonderfully around the waist but tightened around our calves, causing them to ride up the legs. These are small dings on otherwise fantastic pants.

man wearing travel pants leaning on window ledge
Photo credit: Bluffworks

Style Matters

While comfort is key, we also need to be able to show ourselves in public. The most flexible travel clothes should be able to tackle a hike without getting roughed up and walk into town looking sharp enough to stroll a museum or enjoy the occasional fancy meal.

We scored each pant for both its ability to adventure and hit the streets. Some pants, like Off The Grid’s Trailblazer Pro 2 have a bias for stout use. It was the only pant to achieve our top score of 5 for adventure.

But the cargo pockets take away points while out on the town. It’s safe to say that OTG probably doesn’t care about style as much as function and designed the pant around utility.

On the other hand, Orvis’ O.O.O.O. pant is a cotton-poly blend, which looks like a sharp five-pocket denim, but it sacrifices durability and takes longer to dry. Of all the pants we tested, they took the longest to dry out overnight.

Clean lines, darker colors, and traditional styling help you blend into crowds and stay off the would-be pickpocket’s radar. The pants above look as good as they feel and don’t shout “tourist.” The material should be lightweight and, in our preference, darker to minimize showing dirt collected along your way.

Choose Fabrics Wisely

Lightweight performance fabrics can withstand repeated washings in a sink, line dry overnight, and stay wrinkle-free after weeks on the go. Today’s fabrics offer advanced sun protection and moisture-wicking properties and are often water-resistant or water-repellent.

Most of the fabrics used are polyester or poly blends. Synthetic materials tend to stand up to abuse better than their natural counterparts. Weaving in spandex adds mobility. A cotton blend adds breathability but will often sacrifice durability. And, unless treated with a DWR, it can wet-out more easily and hold water longer.

The fabrics on travel pants tend to be more smooth-faced, giving them a polished look. A few, like Orvis and Western Rise, have a more denim-like texture. Between these sits a dulled, smooth finish, like Bluffworks, Chrome, and OTG. Material finishes are more of a personal preference and don’t affect their water resistance. That’s added with a DWR wash.

One of our favorite pants comes from LIVSN. The fit is fantastic, but they don’t have a DWR and the cotton fibers have shown some micro-wear in the knees after repeated work on the ground. It’s also a heavier pant, so we left it off the formal list.

If you choose to go with denim or cotton, look for stretch fabric with a bit of spandex for comfort and flexibility on the road. It will resist wear longer, dry faster, and feel much more comfortable.

Performance fabrics are standing up to use like never before. Shelling out a few more bucks for quality buys into a more durable pant that will last longer. Pants on this list are a good start.


Hiker walking with trekking poles
The Best Hiking Pants for Men of 2021

With a focus on comfort, durability, and performance, we’ve found the best hiking pants for men. Get ready to hit the trail. Read more…

1620 work pants
The Best Work Pants for Men in 2021

Work pants provide functional utility for carpentry, construction, ranch work, or DIY home projects. These are the best work pants we have found. Read more…