CGR test out whether the Arc’teryx Aristo Pants are as good for climbing in as they are for going down the pub.
The Arc’teryx Aristo Pants are part of the new 24 range designed to be as good for casual wear as they are for climbing in. The first thing I noticed was the cut, they were a very modern, casual cut and felt great on. They have had nothing but admiring comments every time I’ve worn them. These are ideal for casual wear and will look great whether you are wearing them on the crag or the college campus. They would be suitable for all casual occasions – even work if you are lucky enough.
So a baggy, modern fit; don’t expect an athletic Alpine fit as you will be disappointed. I drift between a 32” and 34” waist so I ordered a 34”, there are 5 size combinations to choose from. They were a generous fit and I should have opted for a 32”, so I would say they are generously sized. There was plenty of adjustability with the integral waist belt which was sewn into seven bar tacked sections and had a small stainless steel hook to hook into the sections. This worked really well, especially under a harness. This system was so much better than the normal webbed belt and plastic buckle combination. Just the sort of great little innovation that you would expect from a quality company such as Arc’teryx.
There are 3 colours to choose from and I was sent the Nubian Brown – which was a nice colour and complimented most of my other casual climbing wear. The main material is a mixture of cotton, nylon and polysester. Not that you would notice the synthetic materials as the look and feel is exactly like cotton canvas, the addition of the synthetic materials is to improve the durability. The material felt satisfyingly thick and heavy duty, the trusty CGR scales weighed them in at 625g. They just washed with a normal 40 degree wash but they did need ironing!
The Arc’teryx Aristo Pants are not the sort of trousers you would want to walk in to a mountain route though, so they are more for bouldering, sport and outcrop climbing.
There was a double layer of material at the knees and they were articulated so provided good movement for high steps. The crotch had a large and well sewn diamond gusset which made bridging a dream. They were an ideal pant for bouldering in and performed best in bouldering and sport climbing. I didn’t really like them for trad as I feel I need something slimmer in fit. All the models come with an inside leg measurement of 84cms (33”), this was very long and I found I had to roll the legs up. Many of the seams were double stitched with a very high stitch count – as you would expect from Arc’teryx. They had a branded push stud closure on the waist with further branding on the thigh.
All the high wear areas were bar tacked for extra durablity, these were sewn with orange cotton which added a little bit of colour. The fly zip was a standard YKK and worked well even with a harness on. The pants come with a whopping six pockets, two front, two back and two thigh. The front pockets were nice and big, I would have liked to have had a small zipped security pocket for car keys inside it, but they were plenty deep enough to keep hands warm on a chilly day. The back pockets were very big – I often found they had a lot of chalk in them after climbing. The two thigh pockets were also large enough to fit topos and all sorts of stuff in them. They zipped closed into the seam and you wouldn’t notice they were there until you needed them. The zip was a reversed YKK Vislon zip in a material that was the same colour.
The Arc’teryx Aristo Pants have been a fantastic pair of trousers easily worn for climbing as well as socially, they have recieved many compliments and feel great great on. They have performed in most of the climbing situations I have used them in but my favourite has been bouldering and I used them exclusively for this all spring. In fact I hardly taken then off; another great offering from Arc’teryx. They are probably £15 more than other brands of climbing trousers but you’re not going to need to buy another pair for a considerable amount of time.