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  • Outdoor Research - Trailbreaker Softshell Pant - Men's - Black
  • Outdoor Research - Trailbreaker Softshell Pant - Men's - Pewter

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  • Outdoor Research - Trailbreaker Softshell Pant - Men's - Black
  • Outdoor Research - Trailbreaker Softshell Pant - Men's - Pewter

Outdoor Research Trailbreaker Softshell Pant - Men's


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    13 Reviews


    Set the skinner.

    Someone has to lead, and you'll be more than ready to show everyone the way up in the Outdoor Research Trailbreaker Men's Softshell Pant. Designed with input from IFMGA (International Federation of Mountain Guides Associations) guides—the best mountaineers in the business—the Trailbreaker is a super-breathable and rugged softshell, with a waterproof Pertex Shield+ three-layer membrane on the lower legs to keep you dry when you're powering through fresh with clients, friends, and hangers-on behind you. The articulated knees and stretchy fabric give you top-shelf freedom of movement, while the adjustable waist and removable suspenders ensure that you've got the perfect fit when you're teaching city folk the finer points of kick-turn technique. Outdoor Research also outfitted the Trailbreaker with tons of useful pockets and outer thigh vents to help you stay cool and organized during long days in the alpine.

    • Pertex Shield+ three-layer waterproof and breathable lower-leg membrane
    • Stretchy softshell face fabric
    • Zippered outer-thigh vents
    • Zippered thigh, hand, back, and beacon pockets
    • Detachable suspenders and adjustable tricot-lined waist
    • Articulated knees
    • Stretchy ankle gaiter with ankle zips and scuff guards
    • Item #ODR004C

    Tech Specs

    [lower leg] (membrane/laminate) Pertex Shield+ (3-layer), (face fabric) 87% nylon, 13% spandex, (backer) polyester, [upper leg] 50% nylon, 43% polyester, 7% spandex
    2 zippered thigh, 1 zippered rear, 1 beacon
    outer leg zips
    adjustable, belt loops
    Side Zips
    yes, ankle
    Claimed Weight
    [L] 1 lb 13 oz
    Recommended Use
    ski touring, ski mountaineering, skiing
    Manufacturer Warranty

    Tech Specs

    • Reviews
    • Q & A

    What do you think about this product?

    Have questions about this product?

    Great snow trousers

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times
    • Fit: True to size
    • Height: 6'1"
    • Weight: 195lbs

    Got these for winter hiking/mountaineering.
    Pros: They work well with boots and crampons, have great fit, are well designed with the waterproof bottom/softshell top and vents.
    Cons: Vent zips tent to fall down fairly easily, and after a few uses I got a tear in the crotch stitching. For $200+ pants I'd expect them to hold up a bit better.

    Note: at least when I bought these, there was no mesh of any kind under the vent zips, so you'll unzipping.

    Not sure if this is a pro or a con, but they have little guessets at the ankles you can supposedly use to turn the pants into gators. They're so small though, that I gave up trying to figure out how to do that. Nifty idea though.

    Overall, solid product from OR.

    Thanks for the feedback Bradley. I will let OR know about the feedback as well. For the gaiter, it's the internal piece inside the leg that you pull down around your boot. Hope that makes sense!

    OR Rep

    Great Pants

      I bought these for my boyfriends and he said - I'm new to touring, but these pants are outstanding. Very adjustable, slim fit which I like. True to size. The suspenders are a very nice feature and they are fully adjustable, tough velcro. These are super comfy and I feel like I can wear them around town without losing any cool points. Highly recommended.

      Versatile go-to ski tour pant

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Fit: True to size
      • Size Bought: Medium
      • Height: 5'9"
      • Weight: 145lbs

      Love these pants. Functionality, Comfort and Fit are incredible. Functionality: There are several stashing options on these, from an netting lined beacon pocket to back leg pocket (prevents feeling whatever you put in it, every step you take. The air vents on both sides offer direct air flow, come with two zippers (you can move your air vent opening higher on your leg when breaking trail in deep snow). Not to mention these direct air vents allow for easy knee brace adjusments! Comfort: The fabric structure allows you to keep dry on your lower leg, where snow is constantly in contact (More hard-shell material). The upper leg and back of leg is where you are dumping heat through the more soft-shell material. Fit: Despite the photo, these are not bulky pants by any means. I would call it more of an athletic fit; tight enough to not get in your way when you are hiking all day, wearing harnesses or doing more technical ski mountaineering; but loose enough to be comfortable in every step you take and not feel like you don't have room to move. Overall, have yet to find a better constructed ski touring pant. I am 5'9'' and have a medium (I could have possibly gone with a small if I wanted a tighter fit).

      Great touring pant

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times
      • Fit: True to size
      • Size Bought: Small
      • Height: 5'11"
      • Weight: 150lbs

      These pants are incredible!! I got these a couple weeks into the 16/17 winter season and have used them every day since.
      They stay dry in deep powder yet somehow still manage to be incredibly breathable. Even while going all out on the skin track I struggle to sweat out in them. And that's with all the zippers zipped--no extra ventilation. Granted my experience thus far with these pants is winter in Colorado--with temps mostly around 20F. On sunny spring days they might get hot, but then you wouldn't really need the lower-leg hardshell anyways.

      Also they are super comfy, and I end up wearing them around the cabin the rest of the day apres ski. The pockets are excellent: pocket for snacks (keeping them close to your hot quads is good if you don't like frozen clif bars), pocket for phone, pocket for beacon (my favorite).

      My only gripe is the built-in gaiter is too baggy for lightweight ski boots such as Scarpa Aliens. This isn't a huge deal as I've never had snow get into the top of my boots, but a snugger fit would still be nice. I'm 5'11", 150lb with a 29-30" waist and the small fits wonderfully.

      Favorite Ski Pants!

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Fit: True to size
      • Size Bought: Small
      • Height: 5'10"
      • Weight: 165lbs

      The OR Trailbreaker pant is in my top 5 favorite pieces of gear without a doubt! I wear these pants year round for skiing. They block wind and are warm enough for the winter with a medium base layer underneath but can also morph into spring/summer mode by removing the gaiters and opening the side vents. The waterproof lower legs are great for breaking trail in deep snow while the mid-weight soft-shell uppers help keep you dry by moving moisture away from your body. My favorite part of this piece is the updated fit that came out ~1 year ago. Previously they were "euro-tight" now they're a nice moderately athletic cut. I wear a small in this iteration and in the past version I could barely put the small on. If you're upgrading from the older version, size accordingly.

      Favorite Ski Pants!

      great pant

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times
      • Fit: True to size
      • Size Bought: small
      • Height: 5'8"
      • Weight: 162lbs

      I have muscular legs and was worried that these would be a bit tight and have a "Euro" fit but have found them to be right on in size - I got them in Small - my waist is 31". Zippers and vents work well as expected. Sleeve in right front pocket is small and fiddly to get beacon in while wearing the pants . Built in gaiters are pretty snug on T1's. So far great for spring skin / ski in New Mexico - adaptable and breathable. Looking forward to trying them in colder snowier conditions.


      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Fit: True to size
      • Height: 6'1"
      • Weight: 175lbs

      I just got these pants and took them on a hut trip in BC...these pants look great. Pockets are ample and useful. BUT...the internal gaitor is poorly designed and the zipper on the cuffs are cheap. The gaitor is made for you to weave your powerstrap through the cuff, so you can adjust it without pulling up the gaitor. Sounds good, huh? Except that the soft shell fabric of the pant sticks to the velcro of the powerstrap, causing the fabric to pull and fall apart. The zippers on the cuff are also poorly zipper broke on day one of use.
      Sigh...I was expecting better for this much money.

      Best Got Better

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Fit: True to size
      • Size Bought: Large
      • Height: 6'1"
      • Weight: 190lbs

      I had the 2013 model of these and wore them for every possible BC outing, ranging from mellow winter tours in the trees to heli skiing in AK. They were amazing, breathable, windproof. My only gripe was they kinda had a Euro fit, especially for my huge thighs - I definitely received more than 1 "skinny jeans" comment.

      Alas, I just got the new version and can say all the great features of the pants remain unchanged but OR relaxed the fit a bit. Now they are perfect.

      Kickass BC ski pant!

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times
      • Fit: True to size
      • Size Bought: Small
      • Height: 5'3"
      • Weight: 135lbs

      These are the best backcountry ski/snowboard soft shells I’ve encountered! They area a nice weight for cold and dry conditions in the Rockies when paired with lightweight long underwear/tights or by themselves in the warm, damp PNW. They shed water well and are very durable. The gator cuff and zippered outer fits perfectly and securely over a ski boot or even snowboard boot. They’ve made some good improvements on the side zippers to dump excess heat. The zips are longer than many competitors, don’t have the mesh getting in the way and collecting snow, and so far have done a great job of not unzipping further when you’re active and have them partially unzipped. There’s lots of deep, zippered pockets—I guess it would make more sense to put the beacon clip on a different pocket than the front one since it would get in the way at times, but I don’t keep my beacon in my pants pockets anyway. I particularly love how they cinch down if you’re in between sizes or layering. There are Velcro tabs that, when pulled adjust an internal belt system—and they stay in place. And the gator cuff on the inside thigh is durable to avoid rips from crampons as one would expect from OR. These pants are so well designed and do exactly what you want and need in a backcountry ski pant. Well done, OR! P.S. - I'm a woman and ordered the women's trailbreaker, but my husband owns the men's and also loves them. Women's aren't listed on this site.

      Great Skinners

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times
      • Fit: True to size
      • Size Bought: XL
      • Height: 6'0"
      • Weight: 190lbs

      Picked these up for a San Juan Mountains trip. We had a few really warm and a few really cool days and these worked great for both. Adjust your base layers for temp and these will work right along with it. Pockets are roomy and easy to get in and out, huge fan of the back right thigh pocket for Avy book. The suspenders were cheapo with weak velcro and kept wanting to tear at the base layers and pill them up. Easy and cheap swap or go without.

      Kneepad pockets

      The internal pockets for kneepads perfectly fit the styrofoam sheets that come between new pairs of skis.

      Doubt it does much for trauma protection, but it does keep knees much warmer when skiing fast, or when booting up steep lines.

      Kneepad pockets

      Great ski touring pants

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times
      • Fit: True to size

      I have used these pants about 20 days this season, all skinning. I really like them. I wear 32/32 jeans and the medium fits me perfectly.

      I previously used OR Valhalla pants, which are more traditional "schoeller-like" softshell. These Trailbreakers are much more wind-resistant than even "Gore WindStopper" Valhalla pants. The ability to stop cold winds gives them a much larger temperature range. I can wear less base layer, still stay warm, and also dump more heat when I open the big side vents. These Trailbreakers are very very water resistant, on the upper end for a softshell.

      The cuffs work perfectly for allowing AT/Tele boots to open up and flex while skinning. The internal gaiters keep powder out. The suspenders keep the waist from drooping but don't interfere with my pack.

      OR says both the Valhalla and the Trailbreaker have the same cut, but the Trailbreaker is definitely slimmer, a more traditional fit compared to the Valhalla's baggier/saggier new-style fit.

      Great ski touring pants

      Great skinning pant for the price

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times
      • Fit: True to size

      Breathable, light, great fit, waist adjustment straps, suspenders, outer thigh vents. What more could you ask for in a moderately priced pant? Will be using these a lot this winter.

      Money Pant

      • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
      • Fit: True to size

      I mostly ski backcountry these days and I have a tendency to severely overheat. This year, I'm in search of a pant that will keep me warm and dry when it's nasty out and one that will breath adequately and allow me to dump excess heat. I've tried on probably a dozen pants of different brands (Arcteryx, Black Diamond, Norrona, Dynafit, Marmot) and for the price, I found that these were exactly what I was looking for. I will review further after I've been able to get out on them a few times this season, but I am already digging them. The fit is "relaxed". I'm 5 ft 10, currently 165. I could fit into the medium, but it was just alittle tight in the waist. I opted to size up the the large and just use the size adjust straps to tighten them down. The included suspenders are an added bonus. Now when I ski with my pack, I don't have to worry about the pack pulling my pants down. The pants are fairly lightweight and seem like they will breath well. The side zips are about a 12-14 inchesin length so they will vent well. I like that they give you the option of carrying your beacon in your pants if you don't want to carry it on your chest.

      I really like the idea of having the pertex shell material for the lower legs where you'll be bound to get wetter, and the softshell for the uppers to allow better regularization. Stoked to try these out.

      Is there any Pertex shield in the seat of the pants? Looking for some new winter backpacking pants that are more on the fitted side. These sound great but would probably need some level of WP in the back side.

      Do these pants fit over snowboarding boots?