Although hiking trousers may offer better protection during a hiking trip, there are hikers who prefer wearing hiking shorts. Admittedly, hiking shorts are more comfortable and allow for more leg movement, especially when climbing steep terrain or jumping from one area to another. It should be noted though that shorts are only recommended during late spring or summer hikes and are not appropriate for cold weather locations.
Choosing Hiking Shorts
It is important to take into consideration the following factors to ensure that you are getting high quality hiking apparel that will give you the most value for your money:
Material – hiking shorts should be ideally made from lightweight, fast drying and breathable materials. The lightweight quality will allow you to pack light and avoid unnecessary weight. The fast drying quality will spare you from being weighed down by absorbed water and save you from the discomfort of prolonged exposure to wet clothing. Finally, breathability will allow your skin to be properly ventilated and avoid excessive sweating. Shorts made of lightweight nylons and Gor-Tex fabrics possess all of the mentioned qualities and are, therefore, highly recommended.
Length – the shorts’ length should ideally not go below the knees for freer movements. However, since this entails more skin exposure of the legs it may not offer as much protection as the longer shorts. Longer shorts do offer better protection than their shorter counterpart, but their length may restrict movement. It bears noting that if protection is the main consideration, a hiker is better off with hiking trousers than shorts, anyway.
Other considerations – make sure that your hiking shorts are double stitched for durability; they should have adjustable waistbands for better fit and to avoid chafing discomfort; finally, security front and side pockets are also desirable features which can serve as convenient storage spaces for a few essentials you might want to have easy access to.