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Reviews > Clothing > Skirts and Kilts > Macabi Hiking Skirt > Owner Review by Marjorie Woodruff

Macabi Skirt
Tester bio
Name: Slim Woodruff
Age: 60
Gender: Female
Height: 6'  (1.83 m)
Weight: 160 pounds  (73K)
Email address: canyongoddess1948@yahooDOTcom
City, State, Country: Grand Canyon, Arizona, USA
Date: February 11, 2009

Backpacking background: I have been backpacking for 42 years, mostly in Arizona but a little in every western state. I have worked in outdoor education/recreation for over 30 years, including 14 years as a professional guide. I hike mostly in the desert, and I like as light a pack as possible while still being prepared for emergencies.  I think a 30-pound (14 K)  pack is heavy.  I do quite a lot of day hikes (three miles (4.8 k) to 15 miles (24 k)).  Overnights are usually four to six days long and cover 8 – 10 miles per day (12.8 k – 16 k). 

Product information:
Manufacturer: Macabi
Year of manufacture: 2008
URL of website: Macabi Skirt
Listed weight: N/A
Weight as delivered: 12 ounces (340 gm)
Days used: 90+

Field Information:
Locations: Grand Canyon, Rocky Mountains
Description of location: Desert, high mountains
Weather conditions: Hot and dry (90 to 120 degrees F, 32-49 c) through cold and windy (20 – 40 degrees F, -7  - 4 degrees c).

Product description:

The Macabi skirt is a nylon travel skirt originally designed for outdoor pursuits or travel in areas where women wearing trousers are frowned upon. It comes in three lengths: short, medium and long.Short skirt An elastic waist with a drawstring makes for a versatile fit.  There are large inset side pockets and the right-hand pocket has a smaller insert, zippered pocket for valuable items.

I find that hiking in a skirt is extremely comfortable in summer, allowing a free flow of cooling air without chafing. It provides protection for my legs from the sun but doesn’t make me overheat as long pants often do. Medium length skirt

In winter, I wear wool tights under the skirt. The skirt then provides a wind block, but when I start hiking hard, I can cool down by either abandoning the tights or pulling them up so my calves are exposed. Wearing a skirt eliminates chafing, particularly when I am  hot and sweaty.  There is a slight problem with static cling if I wear polypro tights, but wool tights seem to eliminate most of this.

As a woman, I appreciate the privacy provided by a skirt. If nature calls, I can answer without hiking a mile off trail to get out of sight. Kind of like a guy! I can change clothes right in camp under the skirt.

The Macabi has snaps on the side to allow one to shorten the hem and wear it as a mini skirt. It has a strap which I can attach to loops at the front and back to fashion a pair of loose trousers. It has a small zippered pocket inside the right hand pocket for things I don't want to lose. There are two huge side pockets: large enough to hold two cans of Pepsi each, if I should happen across some unattended cans of Pepsi. At this point, the drawstring in the waistband becomes important, as heavy pockets tend to draw the skirt down!  I usually just carry a bandana and some lip gloss in the pockets.  When I am washing graffiti off of rocks, I carry a squirt bottle of water and a small scrub brush in the pockets.

I find the large pockets to be one of the useful features about this skirt.  On my last two hikes I used the pockets to carry:
  • A liter of water, a bag of gorp, and a book to a shady reading spot
  • A water filter and a collapsible gallon jug to the creek to pump water (I could not carry the gallon jug back in the pocket when it was full!)
  • A bottle of soap, a bandana, and a cooking pot to take a bath (and yes, I did move far away from the stream for my ablutions)

Something as heavy as a liter of water will bang against the legs, so I wouldn’t carry it very far.   

I own a short version and a medium version. The medium is almost too long for rough trails, and I really can't imagine wearing a longer skirt for hiking. I'm afraid I would step on it while going uphill. The short one is my favorite. It comes to just below my knees. The medium is about halfway down my calves, and I reserve it for winter when I want more wind protection.

I have worn this on day hikes and on weeklong overnights for the past year and more. It washes easily and dries quickly.  Hiking mostly in the Southwest, I have rarely worn this in the rain.  A slight rain dampens the skirt, and it dries within the hour in our low humidity.  When it rains hard, I do abandon the skirt for rain pants.

The only real complaint I have is the zipper pocket. The zipper tab is at the top of the pocket near the waist, and it makes a lump under my pack waist belt. Consequently I have to hitch the skirt low, or unzip the pocket when I wear a heavy pack. The zipper should have been sewn in the opposite way, with the tab down.

I would also like more color choices. I understand that the company wants to appeal to as many people as possible, and so they stick to neutral colors such as browns, grays, blacks, and royals. I like brighter colors. I would also like an alternative in a waterproof, breathable fabric.

I have met a number of women on the trail who applauded wearing a skirt and vowed to find their own. One Mennonite hiker, who was wearing a long denim skirt, yelled "Way to go, sister!" One British male hiker lamented that he had not brought his hiking kilt, and a local male friend has purchased a kilt to wear on the trail. Even my husband has been wondering if a skirt worn over tights would be more versatile than wind pants.


The Macabi is a flexible part of my hiking wardrobe. It is well thought out and well made.

Things I like:
1. Durable
2. Light
3. Versatile

Things I don't like:
1. Zipper pocket interferes with pack belt
2. Colors are boring

Read more reviews of Macabi Skirt gear
Read more gear reviews by Marjorie Woodruff

Reviews > Clothing > Skirts and Kilts > Macabi Hiking Skirt > Owner Review by Marjorie Woodruff

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