Well, what a few weeks, lots of hiking and testing have led us to this, the results of our Ultimate Travel Shorts Group Test!
So what have we learnt?
Well the days of backpackers wearing army surplus cargo shorts are gone. The new age of performance materials really can make your life on the road more comfortable and enjoyable. From stretch fabrics to anti-microbal treatments outdoor companies are working hard to come up with features that will make living with these shorts a pleasure.
We’ve tried to test these shorts in real world conditions where possible, as much as we would of liked to of taken them around the world with us to test unless someone else is buying the ticket at the moment that’s just not possible. What we have done is tested them on cold and hot days in rain and sun, through forests and over hills. We have also washed all the pairs at least half a dozen times by hand and machine to test for longevity. This is not as easy as it sounds, most of the shorts on test have particular washing instructions due to the treatments the fabrics have undergone during production. In practise, on the road you would normally be hand washing and so this would not cause a problem but it is worth reading these instruction as following them will increase the performance and lifetime or the shorts.
Choosing you own personal Ultimate Travel Short very much depends on the type of travelling you enjoy, the activities you plan and the environments you expose yourself to. Some of the shorts on test that are specifically designed for adventure activities such as the Rab Traverse and Regatta Geo Extol Mountain seem to of come off badly in this test. This is however unfair and on their own merits they perform well for what they were designed for but lack some of the features you would like in a long term travel short. The Berghaus Terrain Shorts were another good offering but sadly we haven’t had space for them in this list. As an everyday or casual wear short they are fantastic but as a travel short they lack some of the features of the winnings pairs, just the addition of a few pockets would of made these serious contenders.
We have decided to create 3 classes of winner to best represent our findings:
- Ultimate Travel Short
- Ultimate Travel Short Runner Up
- Best Value For Money
Ultimate Travel Short
Patagonia – Nomader Shorts
What a great looking pair of shorts!The most expensive on test at £55 but packed full of features and customer designed for backpackers and travellers. Supremely comfortable with plenty of useful features such as a water repellent finish. Particularly love the stretch fabric and elasticated waist. All the pockets are mesh for circulation and contributes to the quick drying performance. They also folded up really small which is always useful. These got fished out of the wash pile for just “one more outing” many times. They are also 95% recycled! You pay the money but you get a pair of shorts you could wear around the world.
Ultimate Travel Short Runner Up
These were the first shorts we tested and just couldn’t forget them through-out the testing process. I love the looks with a combination or respectable appearance and rugged performance. What really swung these shorts as the runner up prize was a reader comment on this review stating that these shorts could now be purchased for under £25. That means you can get a short with great performance and comfort and a lifetime guarantee for an exceptional price! The only criticism as the tests have continued is the lack of stretch in the fabric, but they are not tight in the first place and are comfortable. A possible bargain pair of shorts that we keep wearing again and again. If the fabric had more stretch these would of been the winner.
Best Value For Money
Gelert – Terrain Shorts
We were really impressed with the amount of features these shorts pack in for the budget price tag of £25. We decided they were well worth a special mention as although the quality of construction is not as high as some others on test, these shorts have a lot of useful features. These are anti-microbial and insect repellent whilst being nice to look at and comfortable to wear. They also come in a great range of sizes for men and women. A great offering from Gelert a couple of finishing touches and these could of been the winners.
We hope you’ve enjoyed reading these group test and have found it helpful. Gratitude must go to all the companies that prodiced their wares for this test. It shows great confidence in their products and a real desire to learn as much as they can about the consumers needs.
If you a suggestion for any products or groups of products that would interest you then post a comment and we’ll do our best to satisfy!