/ Hillwalking trousers for UK winter

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Andy Johnson - on 29 Nov 2017
Would anyone like to recommend some trousers for winter hillwalking in the UK? Main use would be weekend backpacking in the Lakes or North Wales, maybe the Borders too. I wear Montaine Terras (or more often shorts) in spring to autumn, but find them too thin in the winter. Thanks!
hbeevers on 29 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

I live in my Paramo Cascada II's; plenty warm enough, they've sorted the fit, waterproof and really breathable.

If I didn't get on with Paramo I'd take a look at Rab's Vapour-Rise trousers and as breathable a waterproof shell pair of trousers as I could afford.

Very interested to see other's responses here.
shuffle - on 29 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

I really like my Vapour Rise trousers for winter!
tspoon1981 on 29 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

If you like the fit of the Terras, try the terra thermo guides. Really comfortable, they wick well, quite warm but you can vent them
Mal Grey - on 29 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

I have 2 pairs from Decathlon, softshell trousers effectively, no membrane, closely woven fabric with brushed inside to feel slightly fleecy. Think this is the closest to what I have, they change every now and then but the Forclaz names are often the same on differing products! https://www.decathlon.co.uk/sh900-mens-warm-trousers-blk-id_8369747.html

They come up small, but stretch. Very comfortable, breathable enough for winter, and durable. Moderately shower resistant when new, but stay warm when wet and dry quickly for the thickness.

I live in mine for walking and canoeing all winter. Would recommend trying on if you live near a Decathlon, they simply don't fit some of my mates. I'm an average Medium, 32" waist, 32" leg, I have the size labelled as EU44, but instore the sizing can be very confusing and doesn't always match the current web sizes (which may be a better attempt to get it right than the French instore ticketing).
captain paranoia - on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Mal Grey:

That's my suggestion too. Formerly Forclaz 900 Warm, then 500 Warm.

Last year, they went a bit nuts, with a fluffier inner, and jean-style unzipped pockets. Hopefully, they've seen sense this year and gone back to the old design; the SH900 looks like it.
ben b - on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

I think soft-shell is the way to go: stretch, warm, weather resistant, bombproof, comfy and happy under a hard shell if needed.

I used to use a pair of Mello's soft shell trousers but they were retired at age 15. Now have some Mammut ones (Champ?) obtained at a crazy low price due to a pricing cock-up in a shop in Sydney! The Forclaz look very similar.

Cheers

b
nathan79 - on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

Thermals underneath your Terra's? I've got some good winter softshells now but that was always my approach beforehand
Timmd on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:
I often use some ancient Rab Vapourise trousers underneath a pair of Craghopper unlined Kiwi trousers. The combination is windproof (enough) and with the Vapourise trousers being breathable enough for the cold air to be felt going through them when cycling quickly down a hill, I don't get damp and sticky in them. It's a flexible arrangement too.
Post edited at 00:44
nickcj - on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

Paramo for me. Can unzip to vent if warm walking up hill. I will wear thin long Johnston underneath if it's very cold and windy.
Qwertilot - on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

Cioch for me == tailored Paramo trousers.

Along the lines of vapour rise I think Rohan's troggings are worth a mention - awfully similar fabric combination but very simple, very stretchy and quite affordable as well.

Thermal leggings to go under the Terra's would make an awful lot of sense though If there's a really strong wind that's cutting through it all you can always put your over trousers on.
mag_to_grid - on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Mal Grey:

The Simond Alpine pants are also very good and still relatively cheap.
MonkeyPuzzle - on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

I've had a pair of Marmot Scree softshell pants for several years now and they're great. Especially as, being dumpy of leg, they do them (or did at least) in S, M and L lengths. Stretchy and with a thin fleecy-backed softshell (Marmot M3) they feel nice on the legs, loads of venting, warm enough for me on their own, but if it's properly cold then I wear leggings underneath.
Andy Johnson - on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

Thanks everyone for the great suggestions! I hadn't really considered water resistance, being mainly concerned about general warmth, so thats an extra factor.

I usually pack a set of merino base-layers for winter trips but find longjohns under trousers a bit restrictive for walking in during the day, as well as making ventilation harder. So I was looking for something warmer that I could mostly wear without thermals. The Vapour Rise trousers and Cascadas look interesting and I'll check those out. I did try a pair of Troggings a couple of years ago but sent them back as I found the waistband didn't work for me under a rucksack hip belt, plus the lack of a fly zip. Nice fabric though.

Cheers, Andy.
Andy Johnson - on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to hbeevers:

Thanks for the suggestion. Do you still carry shell trousers as well, or is that unnecessary in your experience?
afx22 - on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:
I like Mountain Equipment Ibex trousers - a medium weight softshell job. I carry a pair of waterproof shell leggings with me, in case it really bangs it down.

I also have some Rab Vapourise pants but they're too hot for me unless there's snow. I prefer to use the ME Ibex with thin Helly Hansen base layer leggings underneath, if it's around freezing or below.
Post edited at 13:11
Jimmountainviews - on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

I know they're considered "old school" but I have a pair of Buffalo Salopettes that have never let me down in winter & keep you warm even if damp.

Can't really fault them, other trousers are available of course
Jim Braid - on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

Another vote for Paramo Cascada. I've had mine for 10 years winter hillwalking in Scotland mainly in the Cairngorms. As you might expect there have been one or two repairs in that time. Never felt the need to have long johns underneath them and obviously waterproof trousers aren't needed. Work really well for me.
Timmd on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:
I forgot to add that I carry/wear waterproof trousers when wearing my Craghopper - Vapourise combination.

It's cheap to chance upon a system which works. ;-)
Post edited at 14:56
Wee Davie - on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:
I've got a pair of the Simond softshell tweeds. They're pretty bombproof and comfortable. The fit is fairly neat (maybe I'm just fat?) which is good for climbing. Can't beat them for value.
https://www.decathlon.co.uk/mens-alpinism-pant-id_8010075.html
Post edited at 15:20
Timmd on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:
Having just tried to blow through them, it turns out Craghopper Kiwis seem to be fully windproof, that'll explain why I'm nice and cosy. I guess some Dacathlon or Go Outdoors Hi-Gear stretchy or fleecy legging type trousers underneath a pair could be an okay budget combination too, and flexible - making any money spent go further.

Reduce, reuse recycle, make multipurpose and be a Yorkshire man ;-)
Post edited at 15:36
hbeevers on 30 Nov 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

I don't need any other layers with them. Would recommend a pair of braces to keep them up better than a belt but the same would apply to a shell for me.

The advantages; waterproof, windproof, 1 item instead of 2+, highly breathable, comfy, no membrane to breakdown

The disadvantages; will let in water if you're sat in it, quite heavy/bulky compared to a shell only, aren't rip-stop fabric so can tear and despite venting/breathability are too hot for summer/ warm spring.
L nedhed on 01 Dec 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

Either Paramo Cascada's (if it's wet) or Montane Terra's with merino leggings (if it's dryish, which I will be wearing this weekend up Glenshee).
benp1 - on 01 Dec 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

Personally I love my Haglofs Rugged Mountain Pants, can only really be worn from chilly down to cold, they're too warm otherwise. They're excellent, tough and comfy with stretch in the right places

You could just stick a pair of tights on under the Terras, that would probably work quite well
GrahamD - on 01 Dec 2017
In reply to Andy Johnson:

If you have something you are comfortable with in summer, I'd just wear a pair of inexpensive tight fitting running leggings underneath.

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