This is one of the questions we consistently field from first-time and seasoned customers alike. Seemingly simple, it can actually be quite difficult to answer as many variables beyond the obvious (Where are you going?) should be considered when properly equipping yourself for travel: temperature, sun protection, humidity levels, activity, fabric weight, etc. Short answer: there is no “best” pant; only the most relative to your type of travels.
We’ve put together this guide to better explain the technical features of our pants as they relate to specific travel categories and outdoor pursuits. Our goal is to get you in the best pair of travel pants possible so that you can spend less time worrying about your gear and more enjoying your adventures.
Veterans face numerous challenges reintegrating with civilian society upon finishing their tours of duty. As Sean Gobin, the founder and executive director of Warrior Hike (a non-profit dedicated to helping veterans aclimate back to civilian life), explains:
Back in the day, especially for combat veterans, there was always a lengthy journey home on ships – a decompression of sorts. Soldiers used this time, and their camaraderie between one another, to work through what they had experienced.
However, now, with modern transport, you can be fighting the enemy on the streets of Afghanistan on Friday, and walking through a Walmart back home on Monday. This switch can be extremely jarring, and it is an underlying issue with regards to the challenges veterans face when transitioning back to civilian life. Continue reading →
I wanted to provide you with a quick review of your X-treme Adventure Pants. I purchased these pants a while ago to use for a GoRuck Challenge (GRC). I trained in them for a few months before my event. I liked the quality and the durability of the pants and felt confident I had made the right choice. The GRC I did was the St. Patrick’s Day 10 pm class in Chicago, IL. Our event ran from 10 pm – 8 am the next day and we covered 15 miles. The temperatures were below freezing. The classes are limited in size (usually 30) so as to get everyone to work as a team. In our case, we had a class of less than 20.
GoRuck Clip…looks pretty tough
During these events you do a variety of physically challenging tasks. Common among them are bear crawls, low crawls through the mud, lunges, pushups, buddy carries, and carrying a log. These are but a few of the fun things GoRuck has teams doing. All of this is done while moving most of the time at a slow jog and while carrying a ruck on your back filled with 40 lbs of bricks.
I found your pants held up nicely. I found no rips or tears when I was done. The deep pockets were great when stuffing gloves and other items in and out of them based on what task or “mission” we were performing. I didn’t worry about losing anything either because of their depth. I found the side pocket zippers to be easily accessed even with gloves on. They did not come open given the stress I was putting on them. I wore a merino wool base layer that kept me warm. What was great is that the wool help to keep me dry and even though I was sweating the whole time, your pants did not retain the moisture and quickly dried. I was more than pleased with how well they held up.
I will buy your products in the future. In fact, I have 3 more GoRuck events coming up. I plan on buying some of your shorts, unless, by chance, you want me to field test some of those for you? I will gladly punish myself again and give you feedback on your products in the future if you so desire.
If you would like to contact me in the future for anything, feel free to do so. Thanks for your time and keep up the good work.
The late great British explorer, Sir Wilfred Thesiger (1910-2003), made two crossings of the Empty Quarter — an immense swath of desert in Saudi Arabia — in the 1940s when it remained one of the last unmapped areas in the world. Thesiger was widely known for his sheer toughness and survival skills. Despite his own stiff-lipped, aristocratic upbringing, he had a deep admiration of the nomadic Bedouin Arabs who knew how to exist in this harsh, unforgiving environment.
In late 2012, two young adventurers from the U.K, Alastair Humphreys, age 36, and Leon McCarron, age 26, who were inspired by the life and exploits of Thesiger, walked 1,000 miles across the Empty Desert, towing behind them a specially-built cart laden with food, water, and camping supplies. They wore RailRiders VersaTac Light Pants and Madison River Shirt, or rather lived in them, for the entirety of their 35-day desert walkabout which ended in the shimmering Oz-like city of Dubai.
Read the full interview with Alastair and Leon here.
The facts are all there when it comes to global warming. There’s the fast melting Arctic ice and the rising temperatures in Antarctica, to cite two alarming trends. Here’s a most interesting pie chart that buttress this science-is-on-our-side point. And another reason why RailRiders UVA sun-blocking clothing– sorry for the shameless promo — will help you weather the climate-changin’ times.
Modern-day explorer and RailRiders travel-attire aficionado Julian Monroe Fisher writes: “Here I am in the Foyle Reading Room at The Royal Geographical Society in London on October 31, 2012, with David Baker, the Great, Great Grandson of explorer Sir Samuel White Baker. This is one of the guns that Sir Samuel Baker carried with him during…his 1862-64 expedition up the Nile River to meet Speke and Grant. Baker then went on to become the first European to see Lake Albert which straddles the borderline between Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. During Phase two of The 2012-16 Great African Expedition RailRiders is one of Fisher’s sponsors) which begins in early January 2013, along with British filmmaker Jonathan Maguire, I will be retracing the actual route across South Sudan and Uganda that Sir Samuel Baker and his wife and fellow explorer Florence followed during their epic expedition.”
Watch his engaging TEDx lecture below on what it’s like being a modern-day adventurer, anthroplogist, and explorer. Fisher is an International Fellow with the Explorers Club in New York City, and has conducted expeditions in over eighty-five countries around the globe and has led six successful expeditions to the African continent, four of which were sanctioned Explorers Club flag expeditions.
Seth Bewer sent us the following love letter and photo: As an avid outdoor lover and long- distance hiker, my RailRiders Eco-Mesh pants and Madison River shirt have taken me from Georgia to Maine on an Appalachian Trail thru-hike of over 2,000 miles, as well as subsequent thru-hikes of the New England Trail and the Vermont Long Trail. When I only have the clothes on my back to wear everyday for months at a time, I trust RailRiders to deliver a comfortable and long lasting piece of equipment for any outdoor pursuit.”
Dave Osborn aka ‘Freebird’, a former pro windsurfer, has now walked across the U.S. seven times! (1 CDT, 3 AT, and 3 PCT thru-hikes). Here, in the background of this photo is ‘”The Window” is in the Weminuche Wilderness, San Juan Mountains of Colorado.
Phil Peet of Orlando, Florida writes: “RailRiders Versa-Tac light pants and Equator-HT shirt provided all the protection and quick drying needed for a trip down Little Econlockhatchee River with my hiking buddy. Great gear and great company.”
Planet Wild Launches! The site is done is presented and produced by RailRiders Adventure Clothing. It’s a new adventure, travel and fitness site that will bring readers an even greater taste of the great outdoors. Feature stories Include:
Becoming a Navy SEAL: Lessons in Survival
Montana’s Yurt-Dwelling Ultrarunner Mike Foote
Bunion Derby: America’s First Transcontinental Running Race (1928)
Confession of a Barefoot Trail Runner in the Pacific Northwest
Lots more: travel and fitness tips, as well great videos. Go here.
Nancy Rassiga-Tripp writes: ” Hi! I bought the women’s Eco-Mesh shirt a few years ago, and have been absolutely wowed by it! I use it both as a sun-guard shirt and a wind-shirt. Mostly to now I’ve worn it in Baja, Mexico, when it is so hot, but I want my arms protected. It’s been on whale-watching adventures with me, as well as recently on a kayak-camping-hiking adventure, again in Baja. It is never too hot when I use it to protect as a sun screen, and always works when I use it as a wind screen. It really does everything you describe in the catalog – one of the best investments I’ve ever made…my husband has the male version! Thank you!”
Robert Zerillo writes: “Wanted to drop you a line about how I live out of my Jammin’ Shorts. I wore them every day on my recent cruise to the Southern Caribbean. We snorkeled, kayaked, hiked, and went sailing for 7 days. The penultimate adventure, though, was going on the 12 metre Regatta in Philipsburg, St. Maarten. We sailed on Dennis Conner’s S/V Stars and Stripes (US-55) and beat the butts of the Canadian vessel. My Jammin’ Shorts were perfect for the day! In fact, I even got to captain the vessel after our win. That’s a photo of me behind the wheel in my Jammin’Shorts. The perfect end to the perfect vacation wearing the perfect clothing. No matter what I put them through, my Jammin Shorts are durable, long-wearing and extraordinarily comfortable. I even use them as my swimming suit at the local pool because they dry out within minutes after I get out of the water. Keep up your good work and I’ll keep buying your products!”
Dale Easley writes: “I just returned from two weeks in Botswana with a group of students from the University of Dubuque where I am a geology professor. My X-treme Adventure Pants were my go-to outfit, as was my Explorer Shirt. In the attached photo, I am at Elephant Sands, a great spot to drink a beer and watch elephants after a night camping in the bush. We had elephants and hyenas around our tents near a watering hole.”
Long-distance cyclist Terry Habeger, 67, writes: “I love my RailRiders Adventure Top Eco-Mesh shirts. They were my constant companions as I crossed the U.S. in four stages in 2007,08,09 and 2010. I rode this bike fully loaded from Astoria, Oregon to Bar Harbor, Maine. There was hardly a day without my RailRider Shirts as I pedalled the 4,649 miles in a total of 75 days.They were the envy of touring bikers I met along the
way, looking and feeling incredibly comfortable and different than the typical ‘biker’ shirt. The shirts performed admirably, enduring intense heat, sweat, road grime and the wear and tear of setting up camp on a daily basis. They gushed with ‘thank yous’ for the occasional rinsing out. These tops will forever be my mainstay as I continue to do a lengthy adventure tour every year. This past summer they experienced the circumnavigation of Lake Superior.”
For 93 days, Rick Morales walked 700 miles as well as going 48 miles by rowing in a canoe/makeshift raft
Rick Morales, of Panama, has done what very few trekkers would even dare to attempt, let alone imagine: mapping out a new hiking trail across the length of his country. As a naturalist guide, he says that his “unconventional job took me to remote areas of Panama and other neighboring countries, such as the Darien Gap between Colombia and Panama, most of the Andean countries, Galapagos, and Pantanal.” When fundraising and volunteer efforts of a TransPanama Foundation were stalled, he decided, in his words, “to make a solo attempt at hiking and mapping the entire route from border to border across the country.”
For 93 days, he walked 700 miles as well as going 48 miles by rowing in a canoe/makeshift raft. His journey began in 2011 in the treacherous Darien region of Panama, barely five kilometers short of the border with Colombia. “In the ensuing days and weeks,” says Morales, “I had great encounters with wildlife, admired he fantastic scenery of the country, and came across great people. Choosing the right gear was also a bit of a challenge. I fell in love with the RailRiders X-Treme Adventure Pants and Eco-Mesh shirt, and I was instantly hooked. In the heat and humidity of the tropics, the side-mesh panels work wonderfully. My outfit was later confiscated by the Association of Hiking Clubs of Panama, and is now being entered into the Panamanian Outdoors Hall of Fame. It will be its first piece of exhibition along with the boots I wore.” See full interview here.
Christine Arvidson writes: Here’s a photo from our trip snowshoeing in the French Alps. We wore our RailRiders gear all week. The Winter Weatherpants were perfect, especially for sliding down slopes on our butts — mine stayed dry! We love our RailRiders.