Best Women’s Hiking Pants & Leggings of 2023

Learn about our favorite women’s hiking pants including full length, convertible, capris, and leggings.

Discover the best women's hiking pants for your next trail adventure including full-length pants, zip-off convertibles, leggings, and capris.

As many women know, finding a pair of hiking pants that fit well and perform well can be a frustrating task. There are so many different styles, brands, and fabrics to choose from.

To make your search easier, we’ve laid out this guide to the best women’s hiking pants that are comfortable to hike in and look good in a variety of different styles so you can go from the trail to town with ease.

We’re an all-women team of experienced hikers who understand the unique needs when selecting gear for outdoor adventures and whether you prefer to trek in full-length hiking pants, convertible pants with zip-off legs, capris pants that fall mid-calf, or simple leggings, there is something for every hiker on this list.

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Best Women’s Hiking Pants & Leggings at a Glance

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prAna Halle II

Most Versatile Women’s Hiking Pants

Key Features

  • Other styles: Straight, Jogger, Capri, Plus
  • UPF 50 sun protection
  • Pants Rise: Mid
  • Leg Style: Bootcut
  • Inseam: 30, 32, 34 in

Where to shop

  • What we like: numerous large pockets, zippered phone pocket, stretchy material that doesn’t snag easily, can roll up to become capris with snap
  • What we don’t like: runs slightly large (consider ordering a size down), low rise waist fit

The prAna Halle Pant has become a very popular staple for many outdoor women and in 2022, an updated version was released, making it even better. The Halle Pant is now made from a recycled nylon performance fabric, making it incredibly durable and stretchy – plus more eco-friendly. The quick-dry material dries fast and is comfortable and easy to hike in.

There are five pockets to carry snacks and gear in and the cuffs roll up and snap into place for those warm days. The front pockets are deeper and more functional than the original version and include a zipper so you can keep valuables secure. They’ve also added an additional pocket on the left hip pocket (about the size of a credit card) which is good if you want somewhere to put your ID.

The Halle Pant also comes in several styles including straight leg, jogger, capri, and plus sizes. They fit just right, not too baggy and not too tight, and with a ton of styles and sizes available, this is one of the most versatile women’s hiking pants on the market.

Woman hiker standing on a rock looking out over the valley in Zion National Park on a stormy day
Linda wearing the prAna Halle hiking pants in Zion National Park

Eddie Bauer Guide Pro

Best Hiking Pants for Going from the Trail to Town

Key Features

  • Other styles: Capri, High-Rise
  • UPF 50 sun protection
  • Pants Rise: Mid
  • Leg style: Straight
  • Inseam: 29, 32, 35 in

Where to shop

  • What we like: lightweight, packable, sustainable materials, stretchy material that doesn’t snag easily, water repellant finish
  • What we don’t like: only two pockets

BFT’s Director, Linda, recently took the Eddie Bauer Women’s Guide Pro Pants on a camping and hiking trip to Yosemite and they’ve become a new favorite. They’re super comfortable and lightweight so they’ll keep you cool even in warm weather and they have the perfect amount of stretch to allow for all the mobility you’ll need – you could even wear them rock climbing.

There are no back pockets which gives these pants a more feminine look, and we also love that these hiking pants shed moisture and are made with bluesign® certified fabrics.

The North Face Aphrodite 2.0

BFT Reader Favorite

Key Features

  • Other styles: Capri, Jogger
  • Pants Rise: Mid
  • Leg Style: Straight
  • Inseam: 32 in

Where to shop

  • What we like: fabric keeps you warm in cool temperatures and cool in warm temperatures, breathable & lightweight, stylish for trail-to-town, room to wear a base layer underneath in cold temperatures, great fit for curvy women
  • What we don’t like: No UPF sun protection

The North Face Aphrodite 2.0 is a great women’s hiking pant option for those looking for something super comfortable and breathable. Using technical FlashDry XD™ fabric, these pants keep you cool and dry on the trail no matter what season. The fabric is also super durable, protecting your legs from trailside brush and helping to prevent those annoying rips and snags.

You can cinch the waistband and ankles to find your perfect fit, and these pants also come in a jogger and capri. These are also the #1 pick for women’s hiking pants from our BFT readers!

Full-length women’s hiking pants are a great option for pretty much every type of hiking from multi-day backpacking trips to local day hikes with friends. Even during warmer weather, full-length pants provide a layer of protection that will help prevent scratches from trailside brush, keep your legs from getting sunburned, and prevent bug bites.

Arc’teryx Gamma LT

Best Weather-Resistant Women’s Hiking Pants

Key Features

  • Other styles: Tall
  • Pants Rise: Mid
  • Leg Style: Straight
  • Inseam: 30.5, 31, 31.5 inches

Where to shop

  • What we like: holds up well in wet & windy conditions, deep zippered pockets, adjustable string in the waistband, most water-resistant pant on our list
  • What we don’t like: fabric pills with extended wear, no UPF protection, not breathable for sunny weather

I own the softshell Arc’teryx Gamma LT hiking pants and they are one of my favorite pairs of women’s hiking pants. They are relatively flattering and I can layer another baselayer underneath if I’m hiking in cold temperatures. I’ve tested them in rain and snow in Colorado, and while I wouldn’t say they are totally waterproof, they will keep you dry during short bursts of weather and are the next best thing vs. rain pants.

While the pants themselves aren’t too thick, they are durable and I don’t worry about them snagging if I’m sitting on sharp rocks and they also protect against the wind. I like the zippered pockets that are deep enough to store a snack in. The belt and waistband are comfortable and don’t dig into my waist. I wear an 8 and find them to be true to size.

woman smiling on a fall hike in Colorado (Kilpacke Trail) wearing Arc'teryx Gamma hiking pants
Wearing the Arc’teryx Gamma LT Pants on the Kilpacker Trail in Colorado

Mountain Hardwear Dynama/2 Ankle

Most Lightweight Women’s Hiking Pants

Key Features

  • Other styles: Full, Capri
  • UPF 50 sun protection
  • Pants Rise: Mid
  • Leg Style: Straight
  • Inseam: 32 in

Where to shop

  • What we like: lightest pair of pants on our list, elastic waistband doesn’t create rub when wearing a hip belt, pack down small, great breathability and fabric stretch
  • What we don’t like: a little baggy (non-flattering) in the butt, thinner material than other hiking pants on our list

The Mountain Hardwear Dynama/2 Ankle Pants have been one of my staples for backpacking trips for several years now. The elastic waistband is so comfortable, and because there is no button, drawstring, or zipper, they work really well when you’re wearing a backpack with a hip belt since there is nothing that will cause rubbing. The fabric is light and airy, allowing them to breathe well even if it’s warm out. There is no drawstring, so you’ll want to make sure you don’t get too big of a size. I wear size 8 normally and weigh 140 pounds, and I have these in a medium.

I brought these on a 6-day backpacking trip in Sequoia National Park and had no concerns about durability and I could layer underneath at night. I also like them because they pack small and don’t weigh much in case you want to bring them on a backpacking trip. If you’re looking for comfortable, affordable, and flattering women’s hiking pants, these just might be it!

I wrote a full review of the original Mountain Hardwear Dynama Pants a few years ago and although these are an older version of the pant, it’ll still give you additional information.

woman wearing a red backpacking backpack and Mountain Hardwear Dynama/2 Ankle Pants in Sequoia National Park
Wearing the Mountain Hardwear Dynama/2 Ankle Pants in Sequoia National Park

lululemon Cargo Super High-Rise Hiking Tight

Most Durable Women’s Hiking Legging (with pockets!)

Key Features

  • Pants Rise: High
  • Leg Style: Full-length legging

Where to shop

  • What we like: abrasion-resistant fabric, 1 zippered pocket plus 2 drop-in side pockets, moisture-wicking, offers great compression, front and back hanging loop for keys, super comfortable
  • What we don’t like: runs small (consider sizing up)

BFT team member Linda has been loving the lululemon Cargo Super-High-Rise Hiking Tight because they’re specifically designed to withstand the wear and tear of the trail. Made with an abrasion-resistant fabric, you don’t have to worry as much about snagging these leggings when you brush up against vegetation or take a snack break sitting on a rock.

Another bonus of these is that they have 2 stretchy side pocket on each leg that is big enough for your phone plus a small zippered pocket. There are 2 loops that you can use to clip keys or other small items that you want to keep safe and easily in reach.

The waistband sits quite high at 2-3″ above the belly button which is nice, and they provide compression at the waist that really hugs everything in while still being comfortable.

Woman wearing a fleece, leggings, beanie, and hiking boots looking out over the Grand Canyon in the snow
Linda wearing lululemon Cargo Super High-Rise Hiking Tight at the Grand Canyon

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prAna Transform High Waisted Legging

Best Casual Hiking Leggings

Key Features

  • Other styles: 7/8
  • Pants Rise: High
  • Leg Style: Full-length legging

Where to shop

  • What we like: thick material provides warmth on cold days, durable enough to wear on most non-technical hikes
  • What we don’t like: fabric pills with extended wear, generally you need to be more careful with leggings not to snag on a nearby bush or rock

The prAna Transform High Waisted Leggings are one of my favorites when I wear leggings hiking, and are great for everyday wear and van life too. The wide waistband and soft fabric provide extra comfort on the trail and they’re reinforced with a triangular gusseted crotch area for enhanced range of motion. I also like the Transform leggings because they don’t necessarily look like hiking leggings – you can pair them with a sweater and hit the town.

Truthfully, I do most of my hiking in leggings. Why? Because they are super comfortable and easy to hike in. But not all leggings are best-suited for hiking nor should all hikes be done in leggings. It’s important to choose durable leggings made to withstand long days on the trail, like the Transform.

REI Co-op Sahara Convertible

Best Convertible Women’s Hiking Pants

Key Features

  • Other styles: Guide
  • UPF 50 sun protection
  • Pants Rise: Mid
  • Leg style: Straight
  • Inseam: 27.5, 30, 33

Where to shop

  • What we like: can be zipped into shorts or capris (without removing your shoes!), large zippered cargo pocket, comfortable & practical, breathable in warm weather
  • What we don’t like: pants run short and hit at the ankle vs. full length, doesn’t block the wind or provide much insulation on chilly hikes

REI’s Sahara Convertible Women’s Pant makes it easy to convert from hiking pants to hiking shorts in seconds. Made from stretchy, durable nylon fabric and designed for full mobility, these convertible pants are a great choice for multi-day backpacking adventures or longer hikes with variable temperatures and terrain. If temperatures are cooler or there is a lot of trailside brush, wear them as full-length pants. Or, if it’s hot and sunny out and the trail is clear, zip the legs off and convert them into shorts or capris!

One of the best features of these convertible hiking pants is that the zipper to convert the pants into shorts is color-coded on the right to make the reapplication of the lower legs much easier. Convertible hiking pants are also great to pack for travel since they are super versatile with varying lengths.

Columbia Saturday Trail II Knee Pants

Best Women’s Hiking Capris

Key Features

  • Other styles: Plus
  • UPF 50 sun protection
  • Pants Rise: Mid
  • Leg Style: Straight Capri
  • Inseam: 18 in

Where to shop

  • What we like: UPF sun protection, rain-resistant, stretchy material that is super comfortable
  • What we don’t like: runs small (consider ordering a size up)

The quick-drying and super comfortable Columbia Saturday Trail II Knee Pant is a perfect companion on the trail. With UPF 50+ sun protection, a weather-resistant finish, and drawstrings at the knees to keep out dust and debris, we’ve found that this is one of the best – and most affordable – women’s hiking pants out there! Many reviewers note that the fit of these pants runs extremely small – we recommend ordering a size up to ensure the best fit.

Do you have a favorite pair of women’s hiking pants or leggings that works best for you? Let us know in the comments!

Looking for the perfect hiking pants or leggings for your next outdoor adventure? Look no further! Our roundup of the best women's hiking pants and leggings has got you covered. From durable and moisture-wicking fabrics to comfortable and flattering fits, these hiking pants and leggings will help you tackle any trail with ease. Whether you're a seasoned hiker or just starting out, you'll find the perfect pair on this list. Get ready to hit the trails in style and comfort!

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  1. None of these pants come up to a women’s true waist. Even the so-called high rise pants are riding below the models belly button. If you EVER find a pair of pants that actually rise all the way to a woman’s waist please post with a flaming headline. I can’t possibly be the only woman out here longing to be able to hike without hitching up my pants every few steps. I have one of the female shaped bodies with hips and a waist. Low rise pants just slide down and down until I pause to hitch them up. Step, step, step, hitch and repeat. I can keep low rise pants up if I buy them a size too large, haul the slightly longer crotch up into my butt crack and cinch the whole mess with a belt. It’s a really good look.

    It has been decades since manufacturers gave us a choice of pants to our true waist. It’s been so long I have had women argue with me that their waist is at their belly button. It was a wonderful thing. For a number of years I could find full rise pants in thrift and benefit shops as people cleared out their closets. I’d even be willing to pay full retail and how unAmerican is that!

    You are an ‘influencer’ but, sadly, too young to ever have experienced the joy of full coverage. Start thinking about that little line of chill you get at your belly button waistband when the wind is blowing. If your pants came all the way up to your waist your shirt and jacket would fall low enough to protect your back. You wouldn’t need to wear a maternity top to cover your butt crack. If your tummy isn’t rock hard (mine isn’t) you wouldn’t get that unfortunate little muffin top just above the belly button waistband.

    1. Sorry to hear that you have such a hard time finding high-waisted hiking pants that fit you well, Anita 🙁 It is a big pain to have to keep hitching pants up

    2. The REI Activator might be worth a try! I stumbled upon them because I was looking for a “tall” that was long enough (Eddie Bauer’s was not) and they sit directly at my bellybutton, well above my hipbones. I know we’re all shaped differently but I’d recommend these!

    3. I am in complete agreement, and have found two pairs of pants that fit the bill:
      The Prana Koen pant (in stock at REI)
      Mountain Hardware Dynama pant
      Both have a soft high waistband which is dreamy for hiking and settling under the waist belt of my pack. Both are at REI. Happy hiking!!

    4. I sympathize completely!!!! My husband thinks I’m crazy because I’m always going on and on about the stupidity of low rise hiking pants. I feel most outfitters just took their men’s models and made them smaller for women without ever really thinking what we would like. I do love the Fjallraven keb curve pant. They are horribly expensive but if you can find a pair on sale it is totally worth it. High waisted, taller even in the back than the front, and the curve fit is roomer in the hips and thighs.they have thigh and calf vents to cool you down too but have enough room to wear base layers underneath.

  2. Eddie Bauer! I used to have an office downtown San Francisco with an Eddie Bauer, Patagonia, Northface and Marmot stores just around the corner I would visit every day to keep up on new gear. I would usually end up buying all my outdoor gear at Eddie Bauer as there was always a sale and they made great and durable outdoor clothing. All with a lifetime guarantees, which few retailers offer anymore. My favorites are their trail tights leggings. They are strong, thicker, wicking and with a few helpful zippers. I’m a superfan and user of Eddie Bauer outdoor products. Their down jackets keep me warm in the cold SF summer days and on my chilly Sierra backpacking nights.