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The 6 Best Mountain Bike Pants of 2021

Back in the old days, mountain biking in pants meant you had some sort of deathwish. 3-by drivetrains loved to snag in the baggy cargo pants of the era, suspension pivots were prone to catch while pedaling, and at the very least you were guaranteed to be left with plenty of grease stains on your cuffs. Luckily, those dark days have passed. Mountain bike drivetrains no longer threaten to catch your leg with every rotation of the cranks, and bike apparel manufacturers have figured out what it takes to make excellent, practical mountain bike pants.

Now there are mtb pants suited to just about every riding style, from XC epics to downhill racing. We’ve gathered all of the best mountain bike pants into one spot, and dug into what sets them apart from one another, and what style of riders will appreciate each model the most. So forgo the spandex shorts, and get ready to slip into a sweet new pair of pants for your next ride.


Patagonia Dirt Roamer Storm Pants

Best 2021 mountain bike pants
 
 

Patagonia built their Dirt Roamer Storm pants in response to the sort of terrible weather that makes most riders want to curl up by the fire with a good book. They’re literally designed to extend your riding season, allowing you to go out on days that would just be too miserable otherwise, and even work well as winter mountain biking pants. That means Patagonia took everything they’ve learned about making foul weather gear from decades of experience building ski and climbing outerwear and applied it to the Dirt Roamer.

The Dirt Roamer uses an H2No membrane to ensure that water stays off your legs, even when you’re bouncing between bottom-bracket-deep puddles. The cuffs zip open so that you can slip into and out of the pants (and your kneepads underneath) without having to remove your shoes. Two zippered pockets keep your valuables dry, and strategic panels protect high wear areas. If you are looking for a pant to keep you dry and warm no matter what the weather throws at you, the Dirt Roamer Storm ought to be high on your list.

 
Intended UsePocketsOriginal Price
Trail/EnduroZippered thigh pockets$269

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evo Bike Pants

Best 2021 mountain bike pants
 
 

evo’s bike pants bring a reliable, consistent attitude to the world of riding pants. There isn’t any flashy logos or branding, instead, they’ve got all the little features and details dialed. These pants are designed for season-long use. The Schoeler material has some stretch, and a DWR coating, so it moves nicely with your legs and doesn’t chafe, and sheds water effortlessly. But they’re lighter and breathe better than a full foul weather pant like the Dirt Roamer, so they’re more comfortable on hot afternoon rides.

The evo Bike Pants have a velcro waist adjustment that’s easy to use with gloves on, and a stealthy zippered phone pocket that keeps your electronics out of the way and protected. They also have zippered cuffs to make getting them on and off easier. The evo Bike Pants are a true jack of all trades, and they excel across the board. If you're looking for some of the best mountain biking pants, you’ll have a hard time going wrong with these.

 
Intended UsePocketsOriginal Price
TrailHand pockets, zippered phone pocket$159.95

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Endura SingleTrack Trousers II

Best 2021 mountain bike pants
 
 

Endura hails from the UK, the ancestral home of mountain bike pants, or as they call them over there, “trousers”. So it should come as no surprise that the Endura Singletrack Trousers are burly, ready to handle whatever muck a Scottish winter can throw at them. The Riding Trousers are just about as bulletproof as you can get without, you know, stopping actual bullets. That means they’re a bit burlier than the other pants on this list, so to keep them comfortable, Endura included zippered thigh vents so you can get some additional ventilation on hot days.

The Singletrack Trousers use strategic stitching and materials throughout to make them durable without uncomfortable, and they incorporate a whole host of handy features. Chief among them is the adjustable, moisture-wicking waistband which keeps them up and comfortable no matter how sideways you’re getting. The Endura Singletrack Trousers are designed to stand up to years of abuse, and look and feel good the whole time. If you most go on mellow trail or XC rides, there are lighter options, but if you like to push yourself, along with your bike and clothing, these are the pants, or more accurately, trousers, for you.

 
Intended UsePocketsOriginal Price
Enduro/DHZippered hand and phone pockets$129.99

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DHaRCO Gravity Pants

Best 2021 mountain bike pants
 
 

DHaRCO has a strong background in creating apparel for downhill racing, so it’s no surprise that their Gravity pants are based on their DH race shorts. They’re designed with a Nylon/Spandex blend, so they can stretch and move with you comfortably, and have a DWR coating to help them keep from wetting through. The Gravity pants also have a kneepad-friendly cut, with articulated knees and a fit that’s designed to stay put even when your knees are bent in an aggressive stance.

The back waistband pocket keeps valuables stowed and out of the way, and the adjustable waist means you can stay comfortable without worrying about losing your pants on big hits. If you live for shuttle laps and bike park days, the DHaRCO Gravity pants are one of the best downhill mountain bike pants available and were designed with you in mind.

 
Intended UsePocketsOriginal Price
DHThree zippered pockets$135

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POC Resistance Pants

Best 2021 mountain bike pants
 
 

POC’s Resistance pants were designed to push your riding season just a little bit further into the shoulder seasons. They offer a little more insulation and protection than POC’s pants, without compromising comfort. POC’s windproof stretch fabric keeps your legs from getting chilly even on breezy mornings, and Cordura panels help absorb any inevitable impacts.

The Resistance pants have zippered hand pockets for valuables, as well as a card pocket that’s perfect for bike park days when you don’t want to carry a full wallet, and just need an ID and credit card. The tapered cuffs of the Resistance pants keep them from snagging on underbrush or your drivetrain and interface nicely with POC’s kneepads. The Resistance pant is a solid all-rounder that will keep you warm and comfy even on chilly rides.

 
Intended UsePocketsOriginal Price
Trail/EnduroThree zippered pockets$199.95

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Pearl Izumi Launch Trail Pants

Best 2021 mountain bike pants
 
 

Pearl Izumi’s Launch pants are designed to work as well off the bike as they do on it. That means subdued styling and a classic slim cut that works as well at the bar as it does the pump track. But these aren’t just some casual pants rebranded for riding. Instead, they’re made from a stretchy, water-resistant material that holds up to whatever the trail throws at them.

The Launch also features easy-to-adjust waist tabs, and strategically placed pockets lower on the thigh that allow your phone to hang out of the way while pedaling. They breathe well and feel nice and light, so you can ride comfortably in them all summer long. The Launch Trail is a great example of a high-performing product that still works well casually. If you want to be able to wear the same pair of pants to brunch as you do on your trail ride, well, slip into the Pearl Izumi Launch Trail.

 
Intended UsePocketsOriginal Price
TrailTwo zippered thigh pockets$150

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