I walk in a temperate climate where long pants are needed three seasons of the year. What I look for in a walking pant:
- ease of movement
- easy on and off for those restroom stops along the way
- either zippered side pockets or no side pockets, to prevent catching my thumbs when I use arm motion
- reflective stripes for safety
- ankle zippers for changing.
- For travel, you may want convertible pants to wear in variable conditions and simplify your packing list.
These are my all-time favorite walking pants. For a moderate weather range of 40-65F, these pants made from Dryline Light will move with you and help manage moisture. Zippered pockets keep your stuff secure and you won't hook your thumbs by accident. They are available for both men and women. This newest version has ankle zippers, located on the side of the leg where they won't irritate your heel.
2. REI Sport Pants
These pants are available for both women and men. The women's version has a modern-rise waist that hits two inches below the navel, but has a wide elastic/drawstring waistband for comfort.They have zippered side pockets on the welt, which I prefer for my walking essentials. There are reflective side zippers at the ankles to help you put them on over shoes. I prefer side zippers rather than back zippers as the back zippers always end up rubbing on my ankles and calves.
4. REI Fleet Tights
I have walking friends who prefer wearing running tights for our walking workouts. These tights give you a full range of motion with a gusseted crotch and four-way stretch fabric. The nylon-polyester-spandex blend wicks away sweat. It has an elastic and drawstring waistband. The tights have side ankle zippers for ease of dressing. The white piping and zipper accent gives you a little extra night safety. There is a lumbar zipper pocket for your keys and other small items.
When I first started walking and hiking, these pants were the go-to cargo pants. They are made of durable canvas that gets softer with each washing. There are more pockets than you can shake a stick at. Originally produced by Royal Robbins, they now have their own 5.11 company. If your walking turns into hiking, these are great pants for the toughest trails. They now have a mid-rise waist to combat their mom jeans reputation. They come in a variety of colors in sizes 2 to 20.
Convertible pants can be just the ticket for long walks or for travel with changeable weather conditions. If your walk starts off cool but heats up, you just zip off the legs and now you have shorts. The Sahara pants come in a lightweight but durable nylon. They convert to shorts with a 7-inch inseam. They also have vertical zippers the length of the zip-off legs, so you don't have to sit and remove your shoes to convert them to shorts. They have lots of pockets -- front, back, and thigh. They come in men's, women's, and child sizes, different lengths, and in plus sizes for women.
These low rise pants are pure simplicity. Soft, sweat wicking fabric. No pockets. They come in five colors and three lengths (short, medium, tall) and sizes XS-XL. They also have a capri version.
8. Sporthill Voyage Pant
Like the Sporthill Nomad Pant, I love these Sporthill pants. The difference is that this version has open pockets rather than zippered pockets, and leg zippers rather than a plain hem. I prefer zippered pockets so I don't hook my thumbs in them while using arm motion for fitness walking.
10. REI Winterflyte Pants
These pants are great for cold, windy and rainy weather. They are designed for winter sports, to keep you warm and dry while wicking away sweat. They have a durable water repellent coating and block the wind up to 25 mph.They have a small zip lumbar pocket for small items. They have zippered cuffs.