Fjällräven Keb TrousersGrowing up in the Midwest, hiking was primarily a summer activity. June through September was my window to hit the trails and, once the colder months came, any real backpacking seemed off the table. Because of this, my hiking bottoms apparel always consisted of a pair of nylon shorts, a pair of long underwear if it was going to get colder at night, and some rain pants. As soon as I moved to the Pacific Northwest and started hiking, though, I knew I had to change up this system. Now my backpacking season was stretching a lot longer, bringing me into months where the weather was drizzly and brisk, but still ripe to be out there. I needed a pair of hiking pants.

In my search for the ideal pair of hiking pants, I’ve often come across the problem of pants either being too technical or not technical enough. Either they are insulated, bombproof, and waterproof – and consequently highly expensive – or basically a pair of khakis with slightly more quick drying material. In the Fjällräven Keb Trousers, I think I’ve finally found the perfect balance.

Described as “technically advanced trekking trousers” on the Fjällräven website, these hiking pants are definitely made for trekking – the brilliantly placed G-1000® Eco material on the parts of the trousers that need more durability make them highly technical, and their comfortable fit along with the combination of breathability and weight they boast make them versatile enough to take out on a simple day hike.

Fjällräven Keb Trousers

First, on the fit: these are the most comfortable trekking pants I have ever worn, which surprised me at first because of how heavy and durable the G-1000® Eco material felt. However, the G-1000® Eco is only placed where you need it, on the rear, front of the legs, on the knees and on the inside bottom of the legs. Everywhere else on the pants is built with super flexible material, so especially around your hips and upper legs where your legs are consistently bending as you hike, the pants move with you and are exceptionally comfortable. The women’s Keb Trousers are also pants made for women, rather than men’s pants in smaller sizes, meaning they have an actually flattering fit around my hips and legs, unlike many hiking pants I’ve tried. I also found that they fit well even though I’m a bit height-challenged, because the ankle cuffs are designed with four different snap closure options so that you can wear the pants with a loose boot cut if you’re taller or want more breathability or with the cuffs tight around your boots. I preferred wearing the pants the second way because 1) it meant that the extra material caused by my shortness didn’t get in the way and 2) it turns the bottom legs of the pants into gaiters, with the G-1000® Eco fighting off any brush and the bottom cuffs tight around my boots.

The Fjällräven Keb Trousers aren’t waterproof; however, the G-1000® Eco can be treated with the company’s special Greenland Wax (as can most of their products) to make the pants waterproof. I got an in-store demo of how to apply the wax, and it’s easy to do and very effective. So far, I’ve opted not to waterproof the Keb Trousers – In late October I got caught in a 35 minute Washington rain shower wearing the pants, and the non-treated G-1000® Eco material held up great against the rain. If I knew I was going to be out on an extended trip where heavy rain was a possibility, I would go ahead and treat the pants with the Greenland Wax, however, for day trips and overnights where light-rain is expected, I found that the non-treated pants still worked well.

Fjällräven Keb Trousers

In the Keb Trousers, I was probably most impressed by the technical combination of the G-1000® Eco material and the side ventilation zippers. I hiked through volcanic rock in Oregon’s Three Sisters Wilderness wearing the Keb Trousers, making sure that I sat on and kicked the sides of my legs against the highly sharp rocks – the durable material didn’t even take on scratches let alone tears. Initially, I was worried that the strength of this material would cut drastically down on breathability and that, consequently, these would be colder-weather-only pants, but because the trousers are designed with side ventilation zippers, even on a warmer day, huffing and puffy up Tolmie Peak in Mount Rainier National Park, I stayed cool and my legs didn’t get clammy.

Complaints? The European sizing is a bit difficult to figure out (Fjällräven has a new store in downtown Seattle, and if you’re in the area, I’d highly recommend going in and trying on the pants before buying), so, if anything, the pants are a bit snug around my hips. And the G-1000® Eco material makes a sort of “swishing” sound as your legs touch when you’re walking – if that’s the kind of thing that would get on your nerves.

Fjällräven Keb Trousers

Bottom Line:

I would highly recommend the Fjällräven Keb Trousers to anyone looking for versatile, multi-season hiking pants. I find myself hoping the weather is cool enough for pants just so that I can wear them.

Tech Specs:

Sizes: 34-48
Weight: 450 g in size 38
Fit: Regular Fit
Waist: Mid Waist
Map pocket: 1
Pre-shaped knees: 1
Reinforcements: 1
Adjustable leg endings: 1
Stretch panels: 1
Leg-type: Full Leg
Leg ending: Fixed Length
Men’s and women’s styles
Colors: Tarmac, Ochre, Black, Red, and UN Blue
MSRP: $200.00
Available now

 

Fjällräven Keb Trousers

$200.00
9.1

Fit

9.0/10

Durability

9.5/10

Comfort

9.5/10

Breathability

8.5/10

Usability

9.0/10

Pros

  • Flexible material makes for comfortable fit
  • Durable G-1000® Eco material resists abrasion
  • Side ventilation zippers keep legs cool
  • Stylish fit
  • Accurate price point

Cons

  • European sizing is tricky
  • G-1000® Eco material makes
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