The OUTSPEEDs may not look exactly like your run-of-the-mill hiking pants. One might even call them quirky with their elastic waistband and tapered ankles, and even though Salomon insists that the fit is flattering, we're not convinced this is true for all body types.
However, we found that the great features far outweighed the unusual looks.
One clear win with the OUTSPEEDs is their high focus on comfort. The lining is soft and shiny, making them easy to get on and off as well as being gentle on the skin.
That slightly strange elastic waistband comes into its own here as well, meaning that there are no zips or buttons to irritate or dig into the stomach, and the draw cord is useful to tweak the fit. The tapered ankles sit in a comfortable position and keep out of the way of your chosen footwear, whether it be hiking boots or flip-flops.
Salomon describes the OUTSPEEDs as being both 'protective and nimble', and we found we couldn't argue. Light, non-constrictive materials and darts in the knees make for outstanding freedom of movement and mean they are suited to all kinds of activities, despite being designed primarily for hiking.
The 'protection' side of things doesn't fall short either. The 'AdvancedSkin Shield' fabric offers UPF 50 protection against the sun, as well as being wind resistant and treated to repel water, all while staying breathable. A big ask, but we tested the pants out in a howling gale and sudden deluge, and the OUTSPEEDs managed to keep the elements at bay.
They are also wonderfully light (weighing in at just 200g), making them perfect for adventure travel and packing light.
There aren't a huge amount of pockets to play with, just two zipped hand pockets and a one leg pocket on the right thigh. We did like that the leg pocket zips open horizontally to avoid things falling out, but all together they aren't all that capacious. Think phones instead of maps. However, simplicity is the name of the game with the OUTSPEEDs, so you don't want to be weighing them down with bric-a-brac. Invest in a lightweight pack if you like your accessories.
They are available in four understated colours of blue, green and two greys. We appreciate the classic looks, but search elsewhere if you're after more of a statement piece.
Overall, the OUTSPEED Pants are a great no-nonsense offering from Salomon, providing lightweight protection. A great choice for hiking, cycling and more.