With a huge variety of women’s hiking leggings available, updating your outdoor wardrobe isn’t as simple as it sounds. That’s exactly why we put together this comprehensive guide to the best hiking leggings, with 14+ options for every preference, need, and budget.
Sure, you can wear whatever you want to hike, but a quality pair of the best leggings for hiking will completely elevate your experience.
That sounds dramatic, I know. But truly, it’s something so easily overlooked — most people focus on their hiking shoes and a good hiking backpack, and call it a day.
However, being properly and comfortably dressed makes a world of difference, especially when hiking or engaging in other outdoorsy pursuits.
If you opt for material that’s better-suited to the gym than outdoor leggings, you’ll likely end up damp from sweat, stinky, or both. If you destroy your favorite pair of casual leggings when you squeeze through a slot canyon, you’ll be pretty bummed.
On the other hand, you’ll be thrilled when you realize you didn’t have to pull your hiking tights up ONCE all day. Or that they’re so durable they still look brand new even after you took a pretty good tumble onto a rock.
Researching the perfect hiking leggings for women may feel overwhelming. There are SO.MANY. options out there! But luckily, we did the “leg work” for you and rounded up all the best ones on the market.
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Jump ahead to:
- Best Hiking Leggings for Women Highlights
- HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST HIKING LEGGINGS
- Hiking Leggings With Pockets
- 3. Fjallraven Abisko Tight
- 4. Arc’teryx Essent High-Rise Legging
- 7. Athleta Headlands Hybrid Cargo II Tight
- Budget Hiking Tights for Women From Amazon
- Winter Hiking Leggings for Women
Best Hiking Leggings for Women Highlights
Don’t have time (or want!) to read the full guide and just need some quick recommendations? Here are our top picks for the best leggings for hiking in several categories.
- Best hiking leggings overall: Tie between Patagonia Packout & Eddie Bauer Trail Tight
- Best everyday hiking tights: prAna Electa II
- Best budget women’s hiking leggings: Colorful Koala High-Waisted Yoga Pant
- Best hiking leggings worth a splurge: Arc’teryx Essent
- Hiking leggings with the best pockets: Athleta Headlands Hybrid Cargo
- Most durable outdoor leggings: Fjallraven Abisko Tight
- Best winter hiking leggings: Athleta Rainer
HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST HIKING LEGGINGS
Before we dive into the options for the best hiking tights for women, let’s talk quickly about how to pick the perfect pair. Again, I know it seems like we’re being a little extra, but around here, we’re big believers in buying the best outdoor gear possible…even if it’s “just” women’s hiking leggings.
Start by asking yourself a few questions, including some you maybe haven’t considered.
What’s the single most important feature to you?
Outdoor leggings are available in countless styles, with endless features. Hone in on what actually matters to you. A squat-proof pair, winter hiking leggings designed specifically for the cold, pockets large enough to hold your phone?
Where do you wear hiking leggings most?
Think about where you wear outdoor leggings. Are you planning to wear them on local day hikes, multi-day backpacking or camping trips, or just around town? Consider climate and terrain when deciding on material, and whether you may want features like reinforced knees or UPF.
How often will you wear outdoor leggings?
Do you wear leggings as athleisure fashion, or save them exclusively for outdoor pursuits? If you rarely reach for them, it doesn’t make sense to spend much. But if they’re your go-to, buy the best leggings for hiking you can afford.
Are you going for a certain style?
Besides the material and features, think about your preferences or needs. High-rise waistbands are fantastic for staying put on active trail days, but you may find them uncomfortable for backpacking trips. Likewise, you may want full-length hiking tights for certain trails, but capris for others.
Hiking Leggings With Pockets
1. Patagonia Pack Out Tights
- PRICE: $$
- FAVE FEATURES: Exceedingly durable, comfortable material in virtually all conditions, and offered in plus sizes
- MINOR COMPLAINT: The waistband is lower-rise, which doesn’t suit all tastes, and they’re pricey
A personal favorite, Patagonia’s Pack Out Tights are some of the best hiking leggings overall.
The material is thicker than comparable outdoor leggings, so they offer superior insulation that makes the Pack Outs perfect for cooler temps. Yet, the fabric blend is breathable and stretchy enough for maximum mobility, even on hot days.
Standout features include the wide waistband that’s designed to lay flat underneath bulky packs (hence the name “Pack Out”) and the three pockets: two large drop-in pockets on both legs, plus a small side zippered pocket.
Of course, you also get Patagonia’s signature durability. I have one pair of these that’s over three years old, and they still look nearly new!
As a bonus, Pack Out hiking tights are Fair Trade Certified™-sewn and made from Bluesign-approved ethical and sustainable fabric.
2. Eddie Bauer Trail Tight
- PRICE: $
- FAVE FEATURES: Zippered pockets and built-in sun protection
- MINOR COMPLAINT: Eddie Bauer tends to run a bit large in the waist, so some women may not find the perfect fit, especially if you’re between sizes
I’ve been wearing EB’s Trail Tight for years, and I genuinely believe it’s one of the best leggings for hiking in general.
The material is SO GOOD — stretchy and comfy, but noticeably thick. Thick enough, in fact, that I’d even call these warm hiking leggings. Not dead-of-winter warm, but warm enough to take the chill off most of the year.
Even better, these hiking tights also have UPF protection and odor control technology. Hop from the trail to yoga to errands to lounging at home, and rest assured that the Trail Tight is up for it all.
Bonus: the newly updated (2023) versions are even BETTER, featuring more streamlined “invisible” zippers at both pockets.
3. Fjallraven Abisko Tight
- PRICE: $$
- FAVE FEATURES: Reinforcement where you need it, exceedingly durable, and surprisingly flattering
- MINOR COMPLAINT: Expensive
Combining the freedom of movement offered by hiking tights with the durability of heavy-duty trekking pants, the Fjallraven Abisko Tight might just be the perfect outdoor leggings for serious hikers.
Although they’re some of the most expensive womens hiking leggings on the market, trust us—they’re worth every penny. You can wear these day in and day out for years, and they’ll still look (and function!) brand new.
These highly-technical tights are highly functional, with three zipped pockets and reinforcement over the knees and rear. Not only do the reinforced areas protect against abrasions, but they keep moisture out when you sit or kneel, too.
The wide, high waistband has an interior drawstring for the perfect fit. There’s also a small zippered pocket on the hip for cash or a key, and Fjallraven even included a small loop for attaching essentials. This is ideal for a packable rain jacket or a lightweight, collapsible water bottle.
To make these even better, they’re excellent at regulating temperature. That, combined with their moisture-repellent reinforcement sections, make them great winter hiking leggings.
If you own any Arc’teryx items, you know that the quality and attention to detail are unmatched. You’re unlikely to find a single loose thread…like, ever.
Sure, the Essent is pricey — but they’re honestly some of the best hiking tights for women. They’re worth it.
The material falls somewhere between buttery soft and tough, abrasion-resistant. Arc’teryx even uses black lycra, to add stretch and prevent show-through. These outdoor leggings are breathable and soft, but tough enough for climbing .
We especially love the pocket placement. They’re strategically low enough on the thighs to accommodate a climbing harness, yet easily accessible while hiking. If only all hiking leggings with pockets were so thoughtfully designed!
The only slightly negative thing we have to say is that it’s surprising the waistband isn’t adjustable. At this price point, we shouldn’t have to be tugging our hiking leggings up throughout the day.
5. Lululemon Swift Speed High-Rise Tight
- PRICE: $$-$$
- FAVE FEATURES: Side drop-in and back zipper pockets, super stretchy, tons of colorways, extended sizes, and multiple length options
- MINOR COMPLAINT: Spendy, plus sizes lean to the smaller side (consider ordering a size up)
Available in a variety of bold colors, these Lululemon running tights are as fashionable as they are practical.
Designed primarily for running, the Swift Speed is moisture-wicking, incredibly soft and stretchy, and supportive without being crazy tight. The weight, breathability, and fact that they truly stay up make them a top choice for women’s hiking leggings, as well.
While there’s no denying that these are expensive hiking leggings with pockets, you’ll get a TON of wear out of them. Between the numerous colors, multiple pockets, and all-day comfort, you’ll find excuses to wear your Swift Speeds everywhere!
6. prAna Electa II
- PRICE: $-$$
- FAVE FEATURES: Flattering fit, stay-put waistband, and cute pocket detail
- MINOR COMPLAINT: The standard inseam is 26”, so many women will get a ¾ or ⅞ length, rather than full
The do-it-all Electa II functions beautifully as outdoor leggings…or yoga leggings, or in the gym, or for running errands.
They’re made from prAna’s recycled Luxara fabric, so they’re ultra light and second skin-soft, but they also have UPF 50+ and moisture wicking properties. Despite looking and feeling almost too light to be decent hiking tights, they hold up really well, avoiding snags and pilling.
A major bonus for active days on the trail or working out, the waistband actually stays put. Plus, the fabric is compressive without being too tight and the pockets are sleek enough to nearly disappear when they’re empty.
You know how some leggings with pockets can look bulky, or like they’re cutting into you at the pocket seam? These don’t! In my opinion, they’re some of the most flattering hiking leggings for women.
7. Athleta Headlands Hybrid Cargo II Tight
- PRICE: $$
- FAVE FEATURES: Durable yet comfortable fabric, excellent fit, six pockets, huge range of sizes
- MINOR COMPLAINT: The back of the leggings aren’t nearly as water-resistant as the front, and the waist runs small
If you’re looking for multi-purpose outdoor leggings that are functional and look cute, your search is over.
The Athleta Headlands Hybrid Cargo II Tight (rolls right off the tongue, right?) is made of durable, “adventure-ready fabric,” yet can easily be dressed up for dinner or a meeting.
That fabric is an abrasion-resistant nylon/spandex blend that also has UPF 50+, and is finished with DWR. Notably, the “rugged” material is only on the front of the hiking tights, while the back is more of a traditional legging. The front half dries quickly but the back doesn’t.
It’s also apparently resistant to sagging. Numerous reviews mention wearing these on multi-days backpacking trips without the dreaded knee or butt sag. In fairness, the lack of sagging could also be attributed to the interior drawstring waistband.
Where the Headlands Hybrid is definitely not lacking is storage. These bad boys are easily some of the best hiking leggings with pockets—they have SIX, and every single one has a zipper.
Between the wrinkle-resistant material, elastic waistband, and tons of pockets, these also make awesome travel pants.
8. Columbia Windgates High-Rise Leggings
- PRICE: $
- FAVE FEATURES: 3 pockets (2 side drop-in and 1 stash pocket at the hip) and a nice long 28” standard inseam
- MINOR COMPLAINT: Like most other Columbia items, these run large. You can size down, but you may still struggle with the waistband staying up
With their high-rise cut and several generously-sized pockets, Columbia’s Windgates are some of the best hiking leggings for gals who wear leggings everywhere.
They look great with a variety of tops, and the three pockets mean you can just pull these on, grab your wallet, phone, and keys, and go.
On the trail, the Windgates are excellent hiking tights for women because the Omni-Wick fabric is stretchy and thick — they won’t snag on rocks and you don’t have to worry about them being see-through.
9. The North Face Dune Sky Pocket Tights
- PRICE: $$
- FAVE FEATURES: Super soft material with comfy ribbed panels, built-in UPF 40, and generous thigh pockets
- MINOR COMPLAINT: Fits snug and not very breathable
The all-weather Dune Sky Pocket Tights from TNF are some of the best leggings for hiking—and certainly some of the most stylish, too. Ribbing on the calves, side panels, and waistband add interesting detail that take these tights from the trail to lunch.
The FlashDry™ material is butter soft and moisture-wicking, plus has built-in anti-odor treatment and UPF 40. These “extras” do mean they’re not particularly breathable, so they’re slightly warm hiking leggings. They’re excellent for less-intensive hikes or other activities, and in colder temps and wind.
As far as the pockets go, we love their design. The two thigh pockets are perfectly sized, and the rear “reverse entry” pocket is actually big enough to be useful.
Finally, while it’s a subtle detail, we love the flattering “V” shape in the waistband. Not only is it comfortable on, but it elongates the waist!
Designed with yogis in mind, these budget-friendly hiking tights are made from a blend of materials that produces a buttery soft, “naked” feeling. That super-light, second-skin feel makes them equally comfortable for hiking, the gym, or downtime.
If they look familiar, it’s probably because they’re an EXACT dupe for the lululemon Fast and Free High-Rise Tight. Check out the reviews…a lot of people say they actually prefer these!
The high-waisted design has just enough compression to tuck everything in without digging into the tummy, and the interior drawstring ensures these truly stay up.
I have these in four colors (that’s me above, wearing the ‘Savannah’ colorway!) and absolutely LOVE them. I’ve worn them consistently on cross-country road trips, on glacier hikes in Alaska, and off-roading, and these bad boys are practically indestructible.
I will say they are definitely NOT warm hiking leggings, but they’re thin enough to layer underneath warmer layers. Also, while I prefer hiking leggings with pockets 90% of the time, I do have one pair of these without — and highly recommend those, too.
One last thing: CRZ YOGA sizing runs generous, so listen to the reviews and size down.
These Colorfulkoala tights have created more than one social media storm for being the number one dupe for lululemon ‘Align’ leggings. If you’ve spent any amount of time on TikTok in the last year or two, you’ve likely come across these.
Making a strong case for being the best hiking leggings with pockets, the buttery-soft, lightly brushed material is pleasant to wear and they come in over 30 colors.
The flat-lock seam construction is also super flattering on, eliminating any bulkiness and chafing, while boosting maneuverability.
Sizes are available from XS-XL, and they run true to size. I have two pairs and absolutely love them! The waistband literally never rolls down, the length is perfect (I’m 5’5” for reference), and the fabric is just the right thickness to wear any time of year.
If you prefer outdoor leggings with a bit more structure, you’ll likely find these to be some of the best hiking tights for women.
The fabric on the 90 Degree by Reflex leggings offers a fair amount of compression and tummy control, but they’re also extremely comfortable.
I’ve worn these on grueling hikes in multiple national parks and on long travel days—and have been very impressed with how they hold up. The waistband doesn’t budge and there’s no sagging anywhere.
The more structured fabric has a soft, almost silky feel to it, but fair warning: it’s not very breathable. Although I love the way these look on, they quickly became some of my go-to winter hiking leggings because they are WARM!
One other note: I noticed unraveled seams in two places on my first hike in these. Other reviews mention the same, but maybe it was a particular batch or one color. They’re sturdy otherwise, so I’m not concerned about long-term durability.
Winter Hiking Leggings for Women
13. Athleta Rainier Tight
- PRICE: $$
- FAVE FEATURES: Large range of sizes, reflective elements, comfortable in cold weather without being too warm
- MINOR COMPLAINT: The pockets have an awkward, elongated shape, making it tricky to get your phone out, especially with cold hands
With a soft, lightly brushed lining, the Athleta Rainier makes excellent warm hiking leggings for medium and high-impact workouts in cold climates. The inner material isn’t quite a thick fleece, but it is plush.
Outside, the material is slick and smooth (and pill-resistant), like a legging-snow pant hybrid.
These thick winter hiking tights have secure zip pockets on both thighs to keep your essentials safe and sound, plus a slit pocket on the rear waistband. This pocket is ideal for some cash or a card, or even a slim wallet, although it accommodates some phones.
The fit is what I’d call a medium-high rise, flattering on most body types. And speaking of body types, Athleta offers the Rainier tight in a huge range of sizes, as well as regular, petite, and tall inseams. If you prefer full-length women’s hiking leggings rather than ⅞, consider order a ‘tall’ size.
These slim-fit winter hiking leggings come with two major standout features: a windproof front panel and a DWR finish to repel water, even in severe weather. Because the front nylon panel does such an excellent job of blocking the wind, you’ll stay noticeably warm.
That panel also increases durability, making these some of the best hiking tights for women when it’s cooler out.
We love the reflective elements, cozy brushed Merino fabric, and the zippers at the ankles. They’re super helpful for getting the leggings on and off, plus they offer flexibility with your winter footwear.
The one drawback of these Smartwool tights is the fit in the waist. They’re mid-rise and while they do have a drawstring, they don’t have any compression in the waist. Depending on your shape, you may struggle to get the waist tight enough or have to pull it up constantly to re-adjust it.