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|Top Pick: prAna Stretch Zion Short|
|Best Value: prAna Mojo Short|
|Upgrade Pick: Arc’teryx Palisade Short|
|Most Protective: Kühl Renegade Krux Short|
|Best Convertible Climbing Pants: prAna Stretch Zion Convertible Pant|
Warmer weather is coming. It’s soon to be vacation season, and you’re itching to get out to your favorite crag sometime in the coming months. Maybe you’ve even planned a longer trip to a faraway climbing destination. Wherever you go, the weather is going be hot and you want to dress appropriately.
Climbing pants are great to wear during the colder seasons, but when it gets hot it feels great to climb in a pair of shorts. Below is the list of the best climbing shorts on the market. These shorts are all functional, durable, and comfortable. They won’t restrict your movement, and they will help you stay cool as you partake in some summer sending.
- Top Pick: prAna Stretch Zion Short
- Best Value: prAna Mojo Short
- Upgrade Pick: Arc’teryx Palisade Short
- Most Protective: Kühl Renegade Krux Short
- Best Convertible Climbing Pants: prAna Stretch Zion Convertible Pant
- Best Women’s Climbing Shorts
- How to Choose the Best Climbing Shorts for Your Needs
Top Pick: prAna Stretch Zion Short
These shorts are our pick for the best climbing shorts, and we’re not alone. Most everyone thinks these shorts are amazing.
How do I know?
Just look at the number of 5-star reviews these shorts get on any popular shopping site.
These shorts are great because they have everything you need in a pair of climbing (or general outdoor) shorts. They are breathable, comfortable, stylish (by climbing shorts’ standards), and durable.
They are also incredibly versatile. You can wear these to the crag, to work (as casual wear), and around town as an everyday pair of shorts. In addition to climbing and bouldering, they work perfectly for yoga, biking, camping, hiking, backpacking, even fly fishing.
Best Value: prAna Mojo Short
Talk about a good deal. The prAna Mojo Shorts are the best climbing shorts you can get for the money. They are the cheapest option on the list but also the choice that provides the most bang for your buck.
They are ultra comfortable and made of a soft polyester that lends itself to climbing and any other outdoor activity. Wear them for climbing, bouldering, swimming, camping, hiking, etc.
The prAna Mojo Short is the most comfortable option on the list and feels more like a pair of gym or athletic shorts than climbing shorts. It is light, breathable, and smooth against your skin.
Yet, it is still durable and capable of withstanding the wear and tear of indoor and outdoor climbing, and, for that reason, climbers love them.
Upgrade Pick: Arc’teryx Palisade Short
These shorts are for the climbers looking for a pair that will outlast them. Many reviewers have owned the Palisade Short for over four years — putting them through the toughest conditions shorts can go through — without them wearing out one bit. They have even been described as “bomb-proof.”
They are marketed as hiking shorts, but they are also great for climbing and bouldering. They aren’t made of cotton so they keep you cool in summer months. No matter how many times you scrape them against the wall or rock, they will not scuff, mark, or tear.
The Palisade Short is ultra-durable, functional, and also stylish enough as very casual evening wear. You can wear it to the crag or climbing gym and then out to the bar afterwards — just don’t try to go on a date in them.
Most Protective: Kühl Renegade Krux Short
If you’d like a longer pair of climbing shorts, this is your best option. The 3/4 pant legs on the Krux Renegade Short drop below your knees to offer an extra degree of protection. No longer will you cut or scrape your knees on the wall or rock.
In addition, these shorts are comfortable and breathable. Despite the longer length, they will help you stay “kühl” during the warmer months.
Also, you’ll be able to keep your full range of motion while wearing them. Their comfort, coolness, and ease of movement make these the best long climbing shorts on the market.
Best Convertible Climbing Pants: prAna Stretch Zion Convertible Pant
I swear I don’t work for prAna, they just make the best climbing shorts and pants out there at the moment. Yes, this option is a pair of pants, but I’ve included them here because they’re convertible.
At any time, you can unzip the bottom half of the pant legs to create shorts which will look and function similarly to the prAna Stretch Zion Short.
These are a top option for anyone looking for a pair of pants that can double as shorts when summer comes (they’re especially great for days that start out cold and then warm up).
We loved the non-convertible version and this version is just as exceptional — durable, functional, and stylish.
Best Women’s Climbing Shorts
The above shorts are all men’s climbing shorts. For the female climbers out there, we’ve also compiled a list of the top women’s climbing shorts:
- ExOfficio Women’s Nomad Shorts
- Arc’teryx Parapet Short – Women’s
- prAna Halle Convertible Pant (women’s version of the prAna Stretch Zion Convertible Pant)
How to Choose the Best Climbing Shorts for Your Needs
Don’t like any of the options we’ve listed above? Or are unsure which pair to get?
Consider these criteria when shopping to make sure you buy a good pair.
You’re going to be putting these shorts through hell. You’ll be getting them wet, sitting on the ground in them, scraping them against wall and rock, hiking miles on dirty or muddy trails, and generally using them in the most demanding ways possible. They need to be durable. If you know they won’t hold up to multiple seasons of climbing and outdoor sports, don’t bother getting them — they’ll be a waste of money. All the shorts above are durable enough to last you years of climbing and bouldering.
Ease of Movement
Climbing and bouldering require you to move your body in abnormal ways. High steps, heel hooks, hand foot matches, cutting feet, you name it. You need your legs to be as unrestricted as possible and make sure the shorts you’re wearing don’t interfere with your freedom of movement. The climbing shorts here are all designed with ease of movement in mind. In fact, they offer so much freedom of movement that many people often wear them for yoga as well.
Comfort is probably at the top of everyone’s list when choosing new clothes. However, climbing especially demands comfortable clothes. If your shorts are uncomfortable they can not only restrict movement, they can interfere with your ability to concentrate on your climbing or bouldering.