For cold-weather hikes and cruiser snowshoe tours where ski pants seem like overkill, testers appreciated the Mistral. This midweight softshell delivers just enough warmth for comfort in 20 to 50°F temps, and the dense weave proved nearly windproof. “During 20-mph gusts on Colorado’s Hahns Peak (10,839 feet), I never felt the wind,” reports our tester.
The DWR treatment repels light rain and snow, stretchy nylon fabric (with 9 percent spandex) allows for full freedom of movement, and the microfleece-lined waistband wicks sweat and feels plush beneath a pack’s hipbelt. Four zippered pockets (two front and two rear) hold a wallet or phone, and lend these pants jeans-like styling. The zippered cuff fits snugly over hiking and Nordic ski boots but not alpine touring gear.
Bonus: It comes in a range of lengths, including petite and tall.