Well-built riding pants from Dainese, save for a faulty zip.
Dainese claims the HGR is the most resistant, high-performance MTB pant in its range and when it turned up it was obvious the finish, weight and quality were right up there with some of the best mountain bike pants I’ve tested.
The HGR is 90% polyamide and 10% elastane, which means it’s stretchy, so moves with you when riding, but it’s also incredibly tough and hardwearing. The material offers quite a bit of abrasion resistance, so if you do take a tumble, you’re less likely to put a hole in the knee or hip.
The HGR comes with a pre-curved leg, so it easily accommodates knee pads and remains relatively neutral when cranking hard. The legs also have a slightly tapered cut, which stops them flapping into the chain, and the waist is shaped too.
It also benefits from Dainese’s Slide-Fit closure; a sort of two position press-stud that allows you to fine tune the fit. Unlike Velcro straps, you just push the stud in and then slide it across slightly to lock it and there’s a big flap across the fly, so even in the bigger position you’re not going to be left exposed.
I prefer this feature over a DH-style buckle or Velcro because it’s easy to use and there’s not a lot of bulk in the waist, which is good when wearing a hip pack.
Unfortunately, the zip on my test trouser wasn’t the same quality – it was really stiff from the outset and eventually pulled apart on the second ride. I spoke to Dainese about it and it seems it was just a production error with my sample. I’ve been promised a replacement trouser to test, and will update this review online when it turns up.
This is a shame because the HGR is a really comfortable trail trouser – it’s not the coolest running, but it’s really nice to wear, and doesn’t feel restrictive when wearing armour or mashing the gears. It’s also a trouser I’d totally wear year round, it even has a pretty good finish on the fabric to help water run-off in the winter months.
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The quality comes at price though, and it’s hard to justify £170 when you compare the HGR to the excellent £130 Troy Lee Designs Sprint, £130 Rapha Trail pants or even the £90 Endura MT500 Burner.