SHERPA ADVENTURE GEAR WOMEN'S NAYA PANTS
TEST SERIES BY KATHLEEN WATERS
INITIAL REPORT - November 08, 2011
FIELD REPORT - January 16, 2012
LONG TERM REPORT - March 10, 2012
Canon City, Colorado, USA
5' 4" (1.60 m)
125 lb (56.70 kg)
Living in Colorado and being self-employed, I have ample opportunities to backpack. There are over 700,000 acres/280,000 hectares of public land bordering my 71-acre/29-hectare "backyard" in addition to all the other gorgeous locations which abound in Colorado.
Over the past 15 years, my husband John and I have also had the good fortune to hike/snowshoe glaciers, rain forests, mountains and deserts in exotic locations, including New Zealand, Iceland, Costa Rica, Slovenia and Death Valley.
My hiking style is comfortable, aiming for lightweight. I use a tent (rainfly if needed). Current pack averages 25 lb (11 kg) excluding food and water.
PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS
|Manufacturer: Sherpa Adventure Gear|
Year of Manufacture: 2011
Manufacturer's Website: http://www.sherpaadventurergear.com
Listed Weight: 12.6 oz (356 g)
Measured Weight: 13 oz (369 g)
Sizes Available: Women's 2 to 14
Size Tested: Women's 6
Colors Available: Black & Tchampa (khaki)
Color Tested: Black
Fabric: 96% nylon / 4% spandex
Made in Nepal
Other details:(from the manufacturer's website)
• The fabric is water resistant and quick to dry
• Integrated webbing belt adjusts for a custom fit; it’s sheathed in fabric at the back for low bulk comfort under a backpack belt
• Five zip pockets – two cargo, one on-seam rear, and two front hand – have mesh pocket bags
• Ankle zips make it easy to remove pants without taking your boots off
• Gusseted crotch and articulated knees enhance range of motion
• Soft, brushed tricot lines the waist for comfort against the skin
|Picture Courtesy of Sherpa Adventure Gear|
As depicted on the Sherpa Adventure Gear website, the women's Naya pants looked very trim and stylish - quite different from some of my other trail pants. Now that I've got the pants in hand, I'm happy to say, the Naya look even better in person!
The fabric appears to be a tight knit with a bit of "give". Black is a different color for me in outdoor gear and I'll be curious to see how it holds up to our dust and mud. I sure do like the color though.
There are just a couple of logos on the pants, including a white "Sherpa" stenciled just over the top of the left thigh pocket and a small white graphic Sherpa Adventure Gear logo over the right rear pocket.
Notable construction features are the 2 inch (5 cm) darts which create articulated knees and the gusseted crotch which gives additional freedom of movement. Also, I was quite happy to see the 8.5 inch (22 cm) boot zips
An enclosed-in-the-waistband woven nylon belt tops the 3.5 inch (9 cm) front fly zipper and closes with a plastic "clip" buckle. Additional "wiggle room" is provided by a 2 inch (5 cm) single snap. There is a belt loop off to the left side into which the rubber-coated belt tip slides for a neat look.
The Naya sports several pockets:
There are 2 - 5 inch (13 cm) front-side, top-zippered pockets, nicely front-lined with tricot. Below these are 2 - 4.5 inch (11 cm) top-zipped thigh pockets. Sherpa calls these "cargo" pockets but they are positioned on the front of the pant legs, not the side and are flat, not bulky as are what I think of "cargo" pockets.
All front pocket zippers are finished off with thin-corded short pulls. There is one additional tricot-lined back right pocket with a small metal pull that is almost invisibly embedded in the back yoke seam.
READING THE INSTRUCTIONS
Really - "reading the instructions"? I would think that instructions for pants would generally simple and intuitive! Unsnap, unzipper and put one leg in at a time. Oh wait, that's probably not what this header means, eh?
Washing instructions are printed on a cloth tag sewn into the waistband at the back of the Naya pants. Included are the international care instructions and in English:
* Machine wash luke warm
* Do not use bleach or fabric softener
* Line dry
* Use low iron
* For dry cleaning any solvent except trichloroethylene
This should be easy to follow.
TRYING IT OUT
I was a tad apprehensive when requesting my usual size 6 for the Naya pants as I couldn't find a size chart on the Sherpa Adventure Gear website. I finally downloaded the website catalog and there on the next-to-the-last page, a Women's Size Chart was printed, but the sizes were designated as XS, S, M, L, etc. and the Naya sizes are 2-14.
Oh well, I crossed my fingers and went with size 6 and the pants fit almost perfectly, even the length which is sometimes a problem for me. And when I say, "almost perfectly", I need to explain. The Nayas are just a teensy bit more loose fitting than I would wear as casual pants but are sized "perfectly" for active wear, especially in winter when I often wear a mid or heavy weight base layer.
To help make clear the sizing - my current waist measurement just below my belly button, where the top of the Naya pants rest - is 30 inches (76 cm) after a month of eating my former-executive-sous-chef son's cooking! To get back to my usual self, I sure hope I lose at least 2 inches (5 cm) of that once I'm back home. Anyway, my hip measurement (at the widest point) is 37 inches (94 cm). My inseam measurement is 27 inches (69 cm).
In my initial inspection and try-on of the Naya pants, I noted the fabric has a sturdy, but not too heavy stretchy feel to it. A 2.75-inch (7 cm) soft light fleecy interior band encircles my waist and feels great on my bare skin. All the zippers work smoothly and I could not find any loose or uneven stitching. The Sherpa Adventure Gear quality appears to be stellar!
Once I pulled the Nayas on to check for fit, I didn't want to take them off. They are that comfortable! I actually ended up wearing them for the next 3 days straight, albeit, casual wear around the house and walking my son's dog, Dexter. I can see these pants supplanting my favorite sweats for lounging around as well as my favorite trail duds...
This will be my first experience with Sherpa Adventure Gear, so I'm quite excited! My initial impressions are good ones - quality construction and thoughtful features combined with style. Nice!
A small cloth logo-ed tag inside the waistband of the Naya pants proclaims "Because Life is An Adventure" and sums up the Sherpa Adventure Gear motto. I can't wait to get on with my own "adventure". So...Later!
FIELD LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS
|In the past 2 months, I have worn the Sherpa Adventures Naya pants on 8 day hikes, including a 3 day Christmas/anniversary celebration trip to Estes Park, Colorado where I spent 2 days snowshoeing in Rocky Mountain National Park. Supplemental usage occurred on many of my daily 3 mile (5 km) walks with my son's dog through suburban terrain and a subdivision nature park. And because the Naya is so warm and attractive, I've also wore it casually often.|
I'd estimate I easily have 50+ hours wear on the Naya so far.
All of my outdoor time was spent in Colorado, most of it in the Canon City/Fremont County area. Terrain is generally very hilly to mountainous, dry, and with desert-like vegetation, including lots of very prickly cholla cactus, juniper and pinon pine trees.
It's been a rather odd winter so far with temperatures rather mild mostly, and I've worn the Naya in temperatures ranging from 70 F down to 19 F (21 C to -7 C). We've had very strong winds where literally it was difficult to stand, no less hike into them. While I was visiting Estes Park, wind gusts were recorded in excess of 110 mph (177 kph)!
I did not actually wear the Naya while it was snowing, but did wear it in the snow during snowshoe hikes.
PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD
After extensive wear these past two month, without a doubt, I can say the Naya pants are one of the most comfortable pants I've ever worn!
Fabric-wise the Nayas are not too heavy and they are not too light. They are "just right" as Baby Bear would have said! I've been able to wear them in fall-like temperatures as well as the more frigid temps of early winter. This was surprising to me as initially I thought the pants might not be wearable when the mercury dropped. But I wore the Nayas recently while snowshoeing in Rocky Mountain National Park during a Christmas mini-vacation and even without snow pants on top, the Nayas kept me warm enough to enjoy the beautiful scenery instead of concentrating on the wicked winds. I did wear a pair of synthetic base layer pants under the Nayas, but was happy to note a distinct lack of chill from the wind.
On more balmy hikes, the Nayas were not too warm and I appreciated the lack of rubbing from seams which often occurs when I'm too toasty, especially in the inseam. I've also become quite fond of the cotton flannel-like waistband.
I did not encounter any precipitation while wearing the Nayas these past couple of months, but the Nayas did get their share of up-close-and-personal snow contact. I'm not noted to be the most graceful snowshoe athlete (or any thing even close!) and with the hurricane-like winds and icy conditions I've experiences, I ended up on my derrière more than a few times! The Nayas did not wet out and I was able to brush myself off and continue on my hike, hoping no one saw me sprawling.
The Nayas are styled so they provide stellar freedom of movement. At no time, even when straining uphill on snowshoes did I feel any bunching or tightness around my knees. Yet the Nayas have not "bagged out" even after several days of near-constant wear even though they feel "stretchy".
I haven't had any problems with the zippers snagging or being difficult to open/close and am pleased with the ability to remove the Nayas without removing my shoes/boots. I wish all my pants were this neat!
And speaking of neat, the Nayas look presentable enough to wear casual about town without looking like I just rolled off the trail (even when I have). They seem to resist dirt and stains (so far, but I'm a klutz, so we'll see) and wash easily. I have not had any snags or pulls from the various prickly trees and shrubs I manage to fall into and brush up against, either.
I always wash my tech clothes separately from my other wash in cold water, normal cycle with a tech wash detergent and no fabric softener. The Nayas are no exception and the 4 times I've subjected them to the soap and water routine, they've come out looking like new. Very nice!
I love these pants! They are so comfortable, practical and look very attractive to boot! Warmer than they look, I've been able to wear them snowshoeing without an over-layer which is great. The styling gives me a freedom of movement that many of my other technical bottoms do not and the zippered cuffs are discreet, but offer ease of donning and doffing without removing my boots.
So, right now, the Nayas are stashed in my suitcase (need more than a backpack) for the Outdoor Retail Winter Market in Salt Lake City. They will be the only pants I'm wearing and I am confident I'll be comfortable and still look presentable at the show.
LONG-TERM TEST LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS
|Nayas on the Snowshoe Course at AMD||I was able to wear the Naya pants on only one outdoor outing and for the 4 days of the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market (ORWM) during these last two months. Despite the cold weather, I braved the elements - and snow flurries - on Solitude Mountain for 6 hours or so at the All Mountain Demo Day (AMD) at the ORWM. The snow was light and did not melt or wet on my clothing and the temperatures were just about at the freezing mark. There was plenty of snow on the ground and after walking around the manufacturer displays, I grabbed a pair of snowshoes to test out and hit the trails of the Nordic Center at Solitude Mountain Resort. The trails were packed so my pants would have never tested the snow had I not felt the need to test the "flotation" of the racing snowshoes I was wearing. (Aside - racing snowshoes have little or no floatation!)|
Obviously, the days I was attending the show, the Nayas saw no natural environmental stress - unless you count spilled beer at happy hours!
PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD
Despite my apprehension about the pants maybe not being heavy enough to wear in the heart of the winter months, I found that even on the most blustery of days, if I wore a medium-weight base layer underneath, the Naya were sufficiently dense to keep me warm while participating in snowshoeing or trail trekking. They even repelled snow showers and some light drizzle. This was the case when I wore them snowshoeing in Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado and on Solitude Mountain in Utah. Great! So why did I not wear them more often backpacking these past two months?
Well, the answer is simple - I had to send them back for warranty repair! To explain...
After a successful day of wearing the Nayas at the AMD, I noticed the top pocket on the left front of the pants had an inch (2.5 cm) hole where the pocket met the pants. I have no idea how the hole was made.
The pockets are not traditional pockets where a pocket/pouch is sewn into the pants but rather, a pocket-shaped piece of material is glued/heat sealed on top of the pant leg so it rests on top of the pant body rather than inside of it. While this hole in no way would affect the function of the pants, I was concerned it would get bigger. So, I e-mailed Sherpa Adventure Gear's customer service explaining the problem and quickly received a reply e-mail with instructions for a return warranty repair and an attached return form. I was advised it would take 4-6 weeks for resolution.
I was advised when my pants were received in Renton, Washington, and then was shocked to learn the pants would be traveling to Nepal (where Sherpa Adventure Gear is made) for repair. Dang! A short, less than 4 weeks later, I received a tracking number and the news my pants were on their way back to me. I call that great service! Oh, and customer service had no way of knowing I was testing the pants for BackpackGearTest.org.
The Nayas look almost like new even after over 90 hours of wear and a trip half-way around the world , albeit, not with me in them (!), and I'm hoping to get lots more wear from them this spring, this fall, next winter...
Even after the need for warranty repair, I am still thrilled with the comfort, function, durability and good looks of the Sherpa Adventures Women's Naya Pants. I can nimbly scramble over rocks, easily bend and stretch while on the trail or summiting a tall mountain as well as crouch besides a fire in camp. What's more, I'll still look presentable when we stop for that celebratory libation in town at the end of a long weekend! The Naya Pants will, no doubt, continue to be a favorite in the future and I'm looking forward to trying out other Sherpa Adventures clothes
This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1.5
Copyright 2012. All rights reserved.
Thank you to and Sherpa Adventure Gear for the opportunity to explore new clothing brand!
Kathleen (Kathy) Waters
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