PrAna Ecliptic Climbing Pants are my new favorite climbing pants, and are just about the perfect pair of pants that can be used for rock climbing.
I say “just about” because no single climbing pants can have that honor since you might select a different type for different weather, or for a certain temperature, or if we are being honest – a type of “look”.
For example, I reviewed the Bulletprufe brand of jeans as the “Best Climbing Jeans” – and they are the best – if we are talking about climbing jeans! But, for a lightweight, breathable light cotton/polyester blend climbing pants in an array of jewel colors – this is just about perfect!
I ordered a pair of PrAna Ecliptics in Safari (Canary Yellow) direct from Amazon to take with me to El Potrero Chico in order to test how it would deal with the limestone mountains of Mexico.
The weather in December at the EPC was really nice, sunny with some humidity, making for warm days with cooling breezes. My and my climbing partners could decide whether to get a tan on the sunny side of the canyon walls, or go to the opposite dark sides for a cool shadow and grippier rock. The Ecliptic pants worked for both.
Since the fabric is thinner than say the Bulletprufe Jeans, it’s more of a fair weather pant, perfect for the shoulder seasons of warm Spring and Summer days in Colorado, yet light enough to consider for the Summer when you just don’t want to wear shorts.
I am a 32″ waist with a 30″ inseam, and I ordered the small size, which fit me perfectly. I’ve read that a person with a 32″ inseam the small came up short – just the opposite of what I typically encounter in pants. It’s actually hard for me to find pants in my shorter inseam, so it’s nice to find a pair “off-the-rack” that I can order directly online and know right off the bat that it will fit.
I didn’t baby these pants at all, and used knee rubbing action required to power through the 5.10d section. Later on, these pants still looked good enough at an impromptu dinner party later that evening at El Chalet.
The pants do not have belt loops, but use a drawstring to tighten up. The small size for me required just a tad of tightening to reinforce the elastic waist band. Belt loops would interfere with a climbing harness anyway.
The pants also have a stash pocket, a loose yet not balloony fit. “Articulated knee darts” – not so sure what those are, but I assume for either reinforcement or stretch, are a feature.
The PrAna Ecliptic Pants come in 4 appealing colors: Coal (gray), Deep Jade (green), Safari (yellow), and Black (noir – heh).
I picked the “Safari” – I liked the canary yellow color, and knew it would go well with my yellow Grivel Salamander helmet.
About the only thing I would request is some sort of loop near the pocket – but I know that this is a particular request. I tether my cell phone to a belt loop so that it won’t inadvertently fall out of my pocket when I climb. Without a belt loop I figured out I could tether it to the drawstrings, but since they are cinched up with a simple shoelace knot, I just didn’t feel as secured as with a fully connected belt loop.
But that’s a pale complaint that may be particular to my cellphone picture taking usage – but could I really be alone in this want/need? Whenever a fellow climber sees my tethered cell phone they all invariably go – ‘Where did you get that? I need one of those!’ A simple pocket loop for attaching either keys, or an errant cell phone with tether seems like a useful upgrade for climbers or hikers so as not to lose their precious cell phone/camera/keys – what have you.
Are you listening PrAna?
- Rock Climbing
- Loose fit – great for climbing!
- Beautiful color selection
- Not waterproof or water resistant
- Not for cold weather (I prefer Bulletprufe jeans in colder weather)
- Shorter inseam on Small pants (30″) favors those with smaller leg index
- No pocket loop for keys, tethers for cameras/cell phones