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REI Adventures Pants

rated 3 of 5 stars
photo: REI Adventures Pants hiking pant

I got married in these pants, that's how good-looking and comfortable they are.
These pants can be used for nearly any outdoor activity, spring through autumn.


  • Snug yet comfortable
  • Zippered rear pocket
  • UPF50+ rating
  • Very versatile


  • Collects all the lint in the washer and dryer (dark color pants)
  • Side-seemed zippered pocket is awkward

Yes, I was actually married in these pants. We had an outdoors, semi-casual wedding, so these were perfect. They have been great for many other occasions too, including light hiking, casual bike riding, and everyday use. 

Sizing: The sizes seem to run a little small. I haven't fit in a 32" waist in a few years, but that's the size that fit best when trying them on. Also, I have fairly large thighs and hate the idea of having them constricted by skinny jeans. These pants are more snug in the hip and thigh than any other pants I own, but they are comfortable throughout. Perfect amount of fabric, nothing extra.

Moisture: I have sweat a good bit while wearing these pants. The sweat doesn't seem to leak through, although I must admit, I don't typically go looking for that sort of thing. Good underwear always help too.

Function: The only non-functional thing about these pants is the side-seamed zipper pocket. Because it's tight against my thigh, there is no way I could, let alone want to, put anything there. It would feel and probably look awkward. 

Features: The pants do have a UPF50+ rating, so invisibly they are protecting my legs from the dangers of the sun. 

Flaw: As mentioned, these pants seem to be better at catching lint in the dryer than the actual lint trap. I bought the dark gray color (REI calls it Shale), so this may be part of the issue. I've learned to air dry them always.  In the photos below, I had used a lint roller before taking photos. If you look closely, you can still see lint specs.

Lastly, every time I wear these pants, my wife makes some comment about how good my butt looks. She's typically not a compliment giver and she often doesn't notice when I shave or get a haircut, so for her to notice and compliment my butt every time I wear them must say something about them.

Updated (28 April 2014): I wanted to update this review to include some photos of the pants, especially to show the side-seamed zippered pocket I referred to above. Please see photos below.


The zipper on each of the back pockets allows for a sense of security. Sorry for low picture quality.


I'm pleased that the REI logo is not prominent on the rear. It is very small (2"x 1.75") and blends in with the pant color.


Here is one of the side-seamed zippered pockets. Because the pants fit snug from the hip through the thigh, I can't imagine ever wanting to use these pockets. There is one on each side.


Here is a look at the front of the pants inside-out. The reason I did this is to show the pockets. Although the main pants are 100% nylon, the pocket liners seem to be cotton. Although I have no rips or tears in the pockets, the quality does not have me very optimistic. 

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $45-$50 USD

Lightweight and quick drying. Lots of subtle pockets stashed away, though the regular front pockets are a little shallow.

The legs flare a bit, which may bother some. I tend to roll up pant legs when hiking. The fit is a bit awkward: the size that actually fits requires that I wear these pants at a nearly grandpa altitude, near my belly button.

I don't know about everybody else, but I'm pretty tired of unpredictable sizing. Since when did an inch become an interpretive belief?! By way of example, I have two, *identical* pairs of Carharts and while one fits perfectly, the pair I bought to replace them will drop to my shoes without a belt.

Anyway, the REI Adventure Pants are worth a try at a discount price. Decent, basic hiking pants.

EDIT 6/2016: After six years I've never bought another pair of REI pants: overpriced, gross texture, ugly colors and goofy "future hiker" designs. Seriously, this review came during a stupid phase of buying "hiking" clothes and it's a dumb product category.

Fabric: nylon
Fill: n/a
Price Paid: $30

Good pants, buy a new pair every season and you'll be happy.


  • Price
  • Breathability


  • Fit
  • Durability

These pants don't fit very well. Don't buy them online, go to REI and try them on. They fit tight around the waist, loose around the legs. Find a fit that you like, buy a pair, use it, destroy it with thorns, then get another pair. They are inexpensive, and I tear up pants on underbrush anyways.

They are really breathable, quick drying, basic pants. Or just wear them with possible tears.  It's not a fashion show.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $45

I liked these pants traveling through Europe. They packed down great and I barely had to wash them.

When I came home I decided to get out on the trail and pick up a few miles. I had to walk through a small bramble patch that had made its way onto the trail. It was at that point that the pants ripped down the side and left me with stickers in my leg. I managed to make it another two miles before the pant-leg completely ripped in half.

Keep these pants on the street.

Price Paid: $44

Bought my first pair (green) a year ago. They still look great. Bought the second (khaki) a month later. I just bought the dark charcoal color.

Hiking, travel, even at work they're great pants. I wear them and wash them once a week. I live in Hawaii and they are cool on the warmest of days. They dry very fast, too. I'm switching to synthetic tees too. The clothes dryer bill is down to half!

Fabric: nylon
Price Paid: $40

Bought my first pair a few months ago and ended up purchasing three more, as they are very comfortable and "low maintenance," especially when traveling. I also like the security pockets feature as I don't like to wear my wallet in my hip pocket and cargo pants always seem to look somewhat baggy.

The pants hang dry nicely and require no ironing.

The fly zipper fails after one year. Happened to two of my REI Adventure Pants.

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