Yes I know, sweatpants are super comfy. I basically live in them during the fall and winter. But hiking in sweatpants is an entirely different thing.
Can you hike in sweatpants? Yes, hiking in sweatpants is acceptable. However, it might not be ideal in warm or wet conditions.
Can I Wear Sweatpants for Hiking?
Yep, hiking in sweatpants is fine depending on the hike, but it might not always be a good idea. If you’re doing any overnight backpacking trips, I would leave your sweatpants at home (unless you are bringing them just to sleep in). Shorter hikes should be fine.
Water-resistance – One problem with sweatpants or joggers for hiking is that a lot of these pants might not be waterproof. If you encounter rain, river crossing, or sweat a lot, wearing sweatpants made from cotton or other fabric that holds water isn’t a good idea. If you’re looking for something to stay dry in, then polyester and nylon will do a much better job.
Warmth – Sweatpants can be good for cooler weather and even in the winter, but they can get pretty warm. If you are wearing sweatpants on a hot hike, then it might be too warm.
Cleanliness – Another downside of hiking in sweatpants is that the can get dirty really fast. Especially if you are wearing a light color that is cotton, they can get damp and dirty.
Durability – And if you are doing any type of bushwacking, sweatpants can snag on roots, rocks, and thorns and tear more easily.
Why sweatpants are good:
- Easy to move in
- Keeps you warm
- Can be rolled up
- Can be inexpensive (see my hiking on a budget article)
Why sweatpants are not good:
- Not always water resistant
- Can be too warm
- Can get dirty fast
- Not as durable as normal hiking pants
Best Hiking Sweatpants
- Men’s Contour Athletics Men’s Joggers are made from an ultra-high quality lush polyster/spandex fabric blend to keep you dry and comfortable. They come with two zippered pockets and one zippered back pocket to hold your phone, keys, and snacks. They come with a waistband and ankle cuffs for a secure fit.
- Women’s Cherokee Infinity Joggers are moisture-resistant, wrinkle-resistant mid-rise joggers that are made from a 95% polyester / 5% spandex blend. They come with slash pockets, a cargo pocket, and a back pocket to fit your phone and other valuables.
PS – Looking for the best hiking leggings with pockets? See our top hiking leggings.
Hiking in sweatpants can be fine depending on the type of hike you are doing. As long as you stay dry and aren’t doing any technical or overnight hikes, you should be fine.