It’s a no-brainer that jeans are durable, it’s probably why they are the most popular clothing you can find anywhere on the planet, including the Peruvian Jungle! Well, jeans are durable and versatile, and it’s no wonder you can wear them both to the office and your local pub, and everything in-between. So why is it such a big deal to hit the trails in the most durable popular piece of garment on earth? Well, while jeans may work out for a casual walk or even a short fair weather hike, it might not be the best clothing for a serious hike. Comfort is key while having that uphill task. You might require an outfit that serves both comfort and function and especially if the weather is cold and wet. Jeans will soak up some water making it double the weight. Have you ever heard of the story why birds don’t fly. Well google that. As little as 1 gram of weight can limit your take off, ask the mathematicians. Another thing about jeans that make them such a bad choice for hiking is, jeans get cold when it’s gloomy, they will remain wet for hours in the rain and hot when the sun is out. You don’t want to over freeze or over boil those goodies pal. It’s damn uncomfortable.
Why not Jeans?
Well. Jeans or what the apparel companies call denims are heavy. These are made of cotton which is a natural fiber, and can soak in a lot of moisture, the downfall of this is, cotton takes a lot of time to dry up. When you hike with jeans, it absorbs sweat, water, and mud, if any. Ever worn damp jeans? I bet you are curious and you want to try it. Well, even in mild weather, it takes quite some time to dry up, and in case you were to hike in the snow, well; you’d be increasing your risks of hypothermia.
In hot weather, jeans get really hot; you will get sweaty and uncomfortable even before you begin your hike. When your skin gets sweaty in stiff fabric such as jeans, it may result into chafing. You don’t want to experience chaffing during a hike, these culprits will cause a slight irritation, painful sores making your entire hiking experience less pleasant for you and any other people in your hike crew.
Most people would prefer wearing jeans when working outside; however, when you are hiking, you will need to layer fabrics for warmth. For the ladies, long underwear or leggings underneath a layer of wicking fabric is ideal while for the gentlemen hiking pants and tracks will work just fine. You could add an additional ‘quick dry’ layers if needed, and always ensure that you pack dry clothing and rain gear. Of course, depending on the weatherman.
So what are the ideal pants for hiking?
Well, unlike jeans, wicking fabrics will always keep you dry, even if you decide to cross a river or swim in a puddle. These fabrics have been designed to pull water and sweat away from your skin; reducing the risk of hypothermia, making you more comfortable in hot weather. Unlike jeans, synthetic fabric dry quickly, this helps you save on the discomfort that normally comes with damp clothing.