Stretch comfortThis isn’t true of some of the heavier drill cotton trousers which look great but tend to restrict on high steps or wide heel and toe hooks. The great thing about the Stretch Zion pant is hinted at in the name. These are not just a bit stretchy, they’re really stretchy – and this combined with their low weight makes for a trouser that you barely notice. They feature the classic Prana diamond crotch, which enhances freedom of movement, but this is less of an issue given how much the stretch gives you anyway. The fabric feels good against the skin and, crucially, doesn’t look shiny or make you sweat like some polyester mix fabrics can. The cut is about right too, being fairly slim fitting and allowing the stretch to do the work in more challenging positions. Baggier models usually make it harder to see your feet, which is obviously something you want to avoid.
All in all, I recommend the Stretch Zion very highly. They are especially suited to route climbing due to their light weight and the fact they feel great under a harness. I’ve also used them a lot bouldering, although you might want to consider a more beefy option for bouldering on grit or granite, as I doubt the fabric will stand up to harsh abrasions quite as well as drill cotton or the stretch denim of Prana’s Axiom Jeans. The Stretch Zion is not cheap, but considering their many advantages I think they are well worth investing in.