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Help me find a perfect pair of softshell pants

Original Post
Roman G · · Brooklyn, NY · Joined Aug 2013 · Points: 170

I still cant find a good pair of softshells, most are too big and too bulky at the legs. With the limited amount of softshell pants available in my area, New York City, all that I've tried were just way off. (marmot, and few other brands)

I am also looking to get them shortened ( ideally I want length 28/29 or so ) and most softshell pants that are tailored for ice climbing or skiing have a zippers, protective patches and so on.... I just want a pair of softshells with no fancy zippers and adjustments in the legs.

The only pair of pants I've tried that fit me well (almost a perfect fit, besides getting them shorted) were Patagonia Sidesend pants, and although not technically softshells, they are of similar material and look like they might work for light duty ice climbing and maybe fancy enough to go bumming in the snow in the city. I've tried other Patagonia softshells and all others were way off (their Dual Point alpine pants are too bulky and sit way too high, so on...)

Question, can anyone recommend brands/pants that are narrow fit (like the Patagucci Sidesend pants) with no fancy tech on the bottom legs so they can be shortened to my liking? Stretchy, low waist cut, are all big +

FWIW: I am 5'5, waist 30 or so,

Thanks for any advice


BrianVarick · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Nov 2014 · Points: 45

Buy the Arc'teryx Gamma Rock Pant! They are definitely a lighter weight but that makes them more versatile for me. They are very slim and come in a short size so you might not need to shorten them at all. They are by far the best fitting technical pant I have tried. They look fine around town and are comfortable enough to lounge around in too.

Gavin W · · Surrey, BC · Joined Feb 2015 · Points: 183

I'm a big fan of the Black Diamond BDV pants.

AlpineIce · · Upstate, NY · Joined Mar 2011 · Points: 255
Brassmonkey · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2012 · Points: 115

Black diamond dawn patrol pants in a short

Gilman Coryell · · Mount Vernon, Maine · Joined Jun 2012 · Points: 65

King Shield on Amazon. Only half joking. Cheap and rugged. Got a pair on spec and was pleasantly surprised. Slim fit, light weight, Chinese sizing, no gusset but flexable. Ain't no Patagonia or Outdoor Research but probably made in some of the same factories.

slim · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2004 · Points: 1,088

BD has several different softshell pants right now. i think the dawn patrols have a patch on the inside of the lower leg (ski edge guard sort of thing), so i don't know if this will float the OP's boat.

i just got a pair of their Alpine softshell pants and really like them. pretty straight forward pair of pants that are pretty trim around the ankles.

Roman G · · Brooklyn, NY · Joined Aug 2013 · Points: 170

Thanks for the suggestions, I've been reading up on them...


Those who tried Rab pants, do they generally run true to size in the waist?
Do they generally have a high waist or low cut waist? Can't wear pants with a high waist.

Thanks again,


Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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