The Troy Lee Designs Skyline Air short is not the lightest in their range – that accolade belongs to the Drift – but it is definitely the best ventilated
Almost the entire front panel of the Troy Lee Designs Skyline Air short is constructed using a mesh fabric, but surprisingly it doesn’t feel like you’re wearing a giant teabag. There’s a four-way stretch to the mesh and a smooth backing that’s neither scratchy nor irritating.
More airflow means better ventilation in hot weather, and having worn these on some truly sweltering days, we can testify to its effectiveness. The flipside is that the Skyline Air sinks in less clement conditions. There is a solid panel at the rear, but with no DWR coating, water is absorbed instantly.
Compared to the very best mountain bike shorts, likes the 7Mesh and Patagonia shorts, the Skyline Air has quite an old-school construction with flatlock stitching that doesn’t chafe, but feels bulky next to modern ultrasonic welding. It also adds to the weight, so despite the minimal mesh panels, the Skyline is relatively heavy. At 12in, the inseam is more XC than enduro and you’re likely to experience some pad gap. We really liked the two zip pockets as they provide ample secure storage, but the popper fly isn’t the most reliable solution and the friction fit does wear over time.
Included with the Troy Lee Designs Skyline Air is their excellent padded short liner. Bought separately this costs £50, but as a package you get both for only £20 more than the shell alone, making it a bit of a bargain.