Hot weather pants recommendation under $200

Shawn K

Professional Cat Confuser
Premier Member
#1
Can anyone give me a recommendation for a pair of riding pants that can be worn alone over base layers in hot weather (i.e., not over jeans or anything else), with a budget under $200?

Also, I'd be curious to hear anyone's personal experience re: fully vented vs. partial or non-vented pants in weather over 90 degrees.
 

Paul

New Member
#2
DXR a French company do some great summer mesh gear, worth a look. I’ve been using them for a couple of seasons now
 

EricV

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#5
Well, I've used Joe Rocket Alter Ego pants as a partially vented over pant, worn over LDComfort shorts. Love the full length zippers and the zip out mesh panel works well for venting. Stand up or just lift your butt off the seat and you get a really nice flow thru cooling effect. MSRP is $199. The zippers are a little light, but held up well. Two way zips also on the pants legs. I really liked these. Comfortable, good venting, reasonably waterproof and held up well. I crashed in the first pair and despite blowing out a leg zipper, they did the job and I had no injuries or abrasions. They don't do repairs, but did offer me a nice discount on a replacement pair. I eventually sold those prior to the '13 IBR to get a bit better armor with the MotoX pants. FWIW, the knee armor in the Alter Ego pants was some of the most comfortable and 'just fit right' armor I've ever had.

I've also wornOlympia MotoX over pants that had a zip down wide leg panel that gave great flow and the panel tucked into the built in pocket below in the leg. Down side, these were physically heavier than the Joe Rocket and standard Mesh pants, upsides were excellent construction, heavy duty zippers, full length leg zippers and good armor. Super quick and easy to zip up the vents or put them down. I did have to have the knee armor pockets moved and the legs shortened/hemmed since my waist size resulted in far too long an inseam. I don't think these are available any more, but there are some others like them. I always felt like the knee armor in these was slightly off to the side of where it ought to be because of the leg zipper location. Never crashed in them.

Currently I am wearing a pair of Joe Rocket Phoenix pants. No rain liner, full leg zippers, decent armor. I carry some rain pants, which is a pain if I need to stop and put them on mid ride, but it what it is. Lighter, massively better airflow, not so beneficial in temps over ~95F, but less of an issue than a mesh jacket would be. These allow me to survive high humidity rides in the South.

Motorcycle closeouts has a bunch of stuff in the <$200 budget. I went cheap on the last pants and just got some rain pants cheap too. So far, I'm happy with them. I've only needed to break out the rain pants a few times, but it works and keeps me dry. Not a lot worse than a liner that you would need to strip to remove. And there is the real benefit of zip out panels, being able to change from out to in and back again w/o taking anything off. At least I don't need to get naked to remove the rain pants from over the mesh pants.
 

Marc11

Premier Member
#6
FirstGear make a few pairs of Mesh over pants that dollar for dollar, feature for feature are hard to beat and worth a look.

Last ones I purchased came with rain and thermal liners along with hip level zippers for easy in and out.

As for temps, once you exceed body temp, mesh, no mesh, ain't gonna matter much they are all hot.
 

Shawn K

Professional Cat Confuser
Premier Member
#7
Lighter, massively better airflow, not so beneficial in temps over ~95F, but less of an issue than a mesh jacket would be.
Yeah, I've had some firsthand experience with mesh vs. strategic venting jackets lately. I had an evaporative cooling vest under my mesh jacket, and it dried out too quickly. I'm sure my Taos jacket would work better in that setting, as I could reduce the airflow to a level that cooled better without evaporating so quickly.


As for temps, once you exceed body temp, mesh, no mesh, ain't gonna matter much they are all hot.
The issue I have is that I actually get chemical burns from my own sweat after prolonged exposure. This last weekend, I rode 400 miles home in 90+ degree heat. I had my LDComfort shorts on underneath my jeans, and there just wasn't enough circulation to evaporate the sweat from my LDC shorts. As a result, I had a pretty bad case of butt burn.

I need to find some sort of solution that will do a better job of allowing my LDC shorts to do their job more effectively. My linear thinking goes to mesh pants, but I'm open to wise counsel.

@EricV - Tell me more about the Joe Rocket Alter Ego pants. There's removable panels on the outside, revealing mesh underneath? Where is the mesh exactly?
 

Shawn K

Professional Cat Confuser
Premier Member
#9
Being wet makes your skin softer (think of how "pruney" your hands get after being in the pool a long time). Softer skin leads to more microlesions, which leads to more damage during riding.

The key is to be drier, not wetter. At least that's been my experience. Hence my efforts to find something that allows my LDComfort shorts to do a better job of wicking away and evaporating moisture.
 

EricV

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#10
@Shawn K - On the Joe Rocket Alter Ego pants, the zip out panel is the lighter grey panel in the pic. LINK It goes from the front of the lower thigh all the way up and around the lower hip area and back down to the other leg. A wrap around the back strip that comes completely off the pants.

In regards to wetting down the base layer, I don't know anyone adding water to their shorts for that reason. Maybe some do. I remember in the MERA 10-n-10 putting the remains of a 10 lb bag of ice in my lap in Phoenix after icing my jug and putting ice down inside my jacket, then riding with the remaining bag in my lap with a couple of holes punched in the bag. Melting ice was dripping inside the mesh of my pants and while it felt good, the lesson learned later that day was to make sure you dry out before nightfall. It got a little chilly later that night when I was heading east into the Rockies.
 

Marc11

Premier Member
#11
@Shawn K - On the Joe Rocket Alter Ego pants, the zip out panel is the lighter grey panel in the pic. LINK It goes from the front of the lower thigh all the way up and around the lower hip area and back down to the other leg. A wrap around the back strip that comes completely off the pants.

In regards to wetting down the base layer, I don't know anyone adding water to their shorts for that reason. Maybe some do. I remember in the MERA 10-n-10 putting the remains of a 10 lb bag of ice in my lap in Phoenix after icing my jug and putting ice down inside my jacket, then riding with the remaining bag in my lap with a couple of holes punched in the bag. Melting ice was dripping inside the mesh of my pants and while it felt good, the lesson learned later that day was to make sure you dry out before nightfall. It got a little chilly later that night when I was heading east into the Rockies.
I've wet my legs while riding for 12 hours in plus 100 degree temps, they dried quickly, completely and helped cool me.

It is no different then wetting your shirt and allowing the wind and evaporative effect cool your upper body, legs get get less air a nd get more heat on most bikes, so the impact and benefits of wetting my legs are the same as my shirt for me.

I never said ride around in dripping wet pants that never dry and cause issues, but yes, wetting your pant legs will help cool your body no different then wetting your shirt on extremely hot days and yes, they dry just the same.

This may not work for everyone and may not be ideal for some with special conditions, but it does work and work well for me.

It was just a suggestion not being a medical doctor and not understanding his condition, so I only speak for myself and it works for me.
 

EricV

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#12
@Marc11 - I'm not negating your experience or comment. I suspect the functionality of wetting down your legs has a lot to do with the gear you're wearing, how it vents/flows air and the base layer involved. I do know some riders that prefer tights to shorts in hot weather. Perhaps this is partly why? I'm a shorts wearer, so nothing on my legs from knees to top of my socks to wet down except the outer layer.
 

Marc11

Premier Member
#13
@Marc11 - I'm not negating your experience or comment. I suspect the functionality of wetting down your legs has a lot to do with the gear you're wearing, how it vents/flows air and the base layer involved. I do know some riders that prefer tights to shorts in hot weather. Perhaps this is partly why? I'm a shorts wearer, so nothing on my legs from knees to top of my socks to wet down except the outer layer.
Totally agree with you.
 

Shawn K

Professional Cat Confuser
Premier Member
#14
I never said ride around in dripping wet pants that never dry and cause issues, but yes, wetting your pant legs will help cool your body no different then wetting your shirt on extremely hot days and yes, they dry just the same.
I appreciate the response. To be clear, I may have simply understood what you were driving at.

The problem I have right now is that I have no effective ventilation from the waist down, so in hot weather my LDComfort shorts get soaked in sweat and stay soaked; no evaporation. It'll get bad enough that after a while, even the seat of my jeans gets visibly wet.

So what I'm looking for is something to increase circulation down below, to get that collected moisture evaporated and start feeling the benefits.

The Alter Ego 2.0 pants are looking like a good option.
 

kwthom

=o&o>
Premier Member
IBA Member
#15
TourMaster Venture air 2.0 pants

https://www.revzilla.com/motorcycle/tour-master-venture-air-20-pants

I've only been in bad rain a couple of times and I did not have the rain liner installed, but did have long legged LDC on.

In the middle of summer, that wasn't bad. If I needed to start the day in the rain, I'd put the liner in.

It *does* have a zip-in insulated liner - makes a good 'three-season' pant a four-season pant here in the deserts of Arizona.
 

Stephen!

Fly Guy
Premier Member
IBA Member
#16
WRT your LDComfort shorts, you may consider trying the full-length tights instead. I know it sounds illogical to try to dry off by adding more absorbant material, but stay with me for a moment. When you sweat into your shorts, unless that is all you are wearing (ie: nothing over them) and you have no air flow directly across them, the moisture really has nowhere to go once it hits the edge of the short leg. Since there really is no air flow in your nether regions to help evaporate the moisture, there it sits. Once the hydroscopic layer is saturated, no matter how hydrophobic is the inner layer, eventually that moisture will find its way back to your skin.

With the full-length tights, the moisture from down below can be wick^H^H^H^Hdrawn away from that area by the additional material and evaporated away by letting air up the leg or into a vent in your overpants. Because the outer layer of LDCs are so good at wick^H^H^H^Hdrawing moisture through the material and away from the inner hydrophobic layer, having that additional material available really makes them worth the price of admission. Having worn them for over 10 years now (and still in possession of our original set) we have never had skin irritation brought on by excess moisture, even when we saturate the outer layer with water to 'activate' the cooling process.
 

c10

Well-Known Member
#17
I have found just diving into the pool first then riding till dry works . :) Houston armpit of Tx. Nothing like 100 , and 80 to 100% humidity.
 

kwthom

=o&o>
Premier Member
IBA Member
#18
I'm sure the designers of riding pants are probably more concerned with the physical protection properties vis cooling ability.

If we refer back to the wisdom of Tom Austin (and others...) on the subject...

https://www.ironbutt.com/ibmagazine/ironbutt_1002_62-66_Hot.pdf

...we find that getting that sweat away from your body (no matter where it wants to be...) is imperative.

I'm here in the desert, and also swear by the LDC properties.