Copes better than rival trousers on really wet days
We’ve tried most riding trouser options on the market, and these Ion Shelter Softshell Pants are a relatively new addition to try.
Every year, the switch from shorts to riding trousers happens before Christmas and lasts until spring. Long pants keep crap off legs, out of the house and warm legs in the bad weather.
The 4-way stretch fabric is on the thinner side and less soft shell, more canvas/nylon than the name implies. Re-enforced, less flexible, patches on the saddle, inner thigh and ankle area offer extra protection and durability, and the whole pant is DWR treated to fend off moisture. The thicker fabric patches resist ground-in mud and clart pretty well too.
I recently catapulted over the bars on a night ride into some brash. It wasn’t pretty, and I managed to rip a lengthy 10cm hole into the Shelter’s backside. It’s impossible to say how another brand would have fared, but other trousers I use have either thicker and/or stretchier fabric that might have worked differently.
I really rate the new Ion riding kit and this is decent trouser with good fit, temperature management and coverage, but it’s not quite perfect for me in terms of some fabric choices.