Gear Review: Outdoor Research Throttle Short

Outdoor Research Throttle Short
Outdoor Research Throttle Short

Hiking and Running Shorts
Outdoor Research Throttle Short
$59, 6 oz. (men’s small)
Sizes: men’s S-XXL, women’s XS-XL

With the variety of shorts for trail running and hiking out there, what distinguishes one from another? When I’m going fast or far on warm days, I want shorts that keep me cool and comfortable—like the Throttle Short, which I wore this summer on dayhikes in Idaho’s Sawtooths with my family, trail runs of up to seven miles in the Boise Foothills, a two-hour hike-run (6.4 miles and almost 3,000 feet up and down) on the Eagle Peak Trail in Mt. Rainier National Park, a 28-mile, nearly 8,000-vertical-foot dayhike in Idaho’s White Clouds Mountains, and numerous, sweaty gym workouts.

What’s special about them? The stretch nylon fabric is lightweight, doesn’t soak up sweat, and dries quickly when damp thanks to mesh venting panels and a liner brief—keeping me comfortable and preventing chafing on longer hikes or runs in the heat. A drawstring in the elasticized waistband ensures a good fit. There’s only one small, zippered pocket, big enough for a phone and a car key. But for trail runs, long dayhikes, and ultralight backpacking in warm weather, the Throttle Short shines.

See my reviews of other hiking apparel and trail-running apparel I like, including more featured hiking shorts from GoLite and MontBell, and compression shorts I regularly wear on long trail runs, the CW-X Pro Shorts.

NOTE: I’ve been testing gear for Backpacker Magazine for 20 years. At The Big Outside, I review only what I consider the best outdoor gear and apparel. See all of my reviews by clicking on the Gear Reviews category at left or in the main menu.

—Michael Lanza


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