Mountain bike apparel preferences vary from rider to rider. Some are comfortable riding in shorts, while others pull inspiration from road cycling’s Lycra kits. Downhill riders often wear gear derived from motocross, and trail riders tend to prefer a casual athletic fit. With so many styles on the market, it can be hard to hone in on the best type of riding gear for you. This month, the wrecking crew grabbed a pair of riding pants from Giro designed to be lightweight and breathable for trail riding while offering added length for cold weather. Our goal was to see what type of rider these pants would benefit most and, of course, to see if they could hold up to our thrash testing.
Giro’s Havoc pants charge into harsh weather with a Durable Water Repellent (DWR) coating and provide comfort with four-way stretch materials. Waist sizes include 30, 32, 34, 36 and 40, with an adjustable waistband to help fit sizes in between. The ample ventilation keeps riders cool while climbing, and UPF 50 sun protection helps keep riders protected from harmful rays. The pants have belt loops should you want to wear one or clip something onto them. There are also two regular pockets along with a hidden side pocket to stow riding essentials. But, enough of all that. Let’s see how these pants performed out on the trails.
Field test results:
The first thing our test riders noticed about the Havoc pants was that these aren’t your overly padded motocross-style pants built for downhillers. The Havoc pants are built with trail riders in mind, and it shows once you pull them on. The four-way stretch material allowed us to move around as freely as in a pair of shorts, and the perforated ventilation panels around our calves provided plenty of airflow, almost making us forget we had full-length riding gear on. The knee area is baggy enough for slim-fit knee pads, such as G-Forms or the 7iDP pads tested elsewhere in this issue. We rode with these pants in weather that ranged from low 50s to high 60s and found they were quite comfortable. If your weather is cooler, you may want to wear a base layer underneath; however, our Southern California test riders tend to be more sensitive to cooler temperatures. That said, these pants are a great option for any rider looking for additional warmth over shorts or mud protection on wet days. The Havoc pants move well, breathe well and provided our testers with a great overall riding experience.
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