13 BEST Hiking Leggings: Waterproof & for Cold/Heat [2024]

Reviewed by Elina Ansary
Last updated:

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Short on time? Our pick for the best hiking leggings is the Lululemon Cargo Super-High-Rise Hiking Tight.

The best hiking leggings for keeping you feeling comfortable, supported, and free during your next outdoor adventure.

When putting together an outfit for a hike, you have a lot of outdoor gear to choose from.

As far as your bottoms go, you can choose between shorts, pants, and leggings. If you’ve found yourself reading this article, I’m guessing you are interested in the third.

Leggings have become a style staple. People throw on leggings for nearly any activity nowadays– physical and otherwise.

So, if you’re wondering whether you can wear hiking leggings, the answer is yes!

Leggings can be suitable for all seasons– whether you choose fleece-lined leggings for winter hiking or ultra-lightweight leggings for summer hiking.

You can choose a pair of durable water-repellent leggings for challenging hikes through the elements or a lighter pair with stretch material for sunny, less strenuous hikes. 

Let’s look at some of the top options for women’s hiking leggings. I’ll point out the notable features of each style, and you can select a pair that best fits your needs from there.

A woman in black leggings, a green tank, and hiking boots stands next to a totem-like pole at the rocky summit of a mountain overlooking a suburban valley, with  clear blue sky behind her.

Here’s a quick look at our recommendations

Lululemon Cargo Super-High-Rise Hiking Tight

Best Overall Hiking Leggings

Lululemon Cargo Super-High-Rise Hiking Tight

Waist-length: Ultra High-rise
Materials: 72% Nylon, 28% Lycra Elastane (Pockets: 56% Nylon, 44% Lycra Elastane)
Sizes available: 0-20

I don’t know about you, but when I hear leggings, I think of Lululemon.

I was ecstatic to see that they’ve created a legging specifically with hiking in mind.

The Lululemon Cargo Super-High-Rise Hiking Tights are branded with the motto “Detours welcome.” The leggings have abrasion-resistant, four-way stretch fabric. 

The material is also sweat-wicking and quick drying– capable of handling sweat or water well.

With easy-access thigh pockets plus a zippered pocket, you have ample storage to keep personal items.

One thing to consider: these leggings are ultra high rise. Additionally, they only come with a 25″ inseam. 

For many people, this may not be an issue. But these may be too long for anyone on the shorter side or with a shorter torso.


  • Quick drying
  • Sweat-wicking
  • Durable
  • Carabiner clip
  • Locker Loop
  • Pockets


  • High price point
  • Only a 25″ inseam option

Lululemon Align High-Rise Pant

Most Comfortable Hiking Leggings

Lululemon Align High-Rise Pant
Lululemon Align High-Rise Pant

Waist-length: High-rise
Materials: 81% Nylon, 19% Lycra Elastane
Sizes available: 0-20

Another option for the best Lululemon leggings for hiking is the Lululemon Align High-Rise Pant

Because these leggings are so comfortable (they’re designed for yoga and stretching), they’re some of my favorite leggings to take on hikes or my weekly workouts.

The aspect I love most about these leggings is how stretchy and soft the material is. There’s no restrictive feeling like you sometimes get with hiking leggings, but still enough support for most hikes.

Like many Lululemon leggings, you can choose between a 17″, 21″, 23″, 25″, 28″, and 31″ inseam for these leggings–something I love about this brand as a tall person with long legs. They also have an option with pockets and a ribbed version, so a lot of choices!

The one thing I’ll note is that these leggings are on the thinner side, so they’re not as good for colder weather.


  • Very soft and stretchy
  • Sweat-wicking
  • Lightweight and breathable
  • Multiple color, length, and style options–including one with pockets!


  • The material is on the thinner side
  • Expensive


Fjallraven Abisko Trekking Tights

Best Reinforced Hiking Leggings 

Product image for the Fjallraven Abisko Trekking Tights in dark blue.

Waist-length: Mid-rise
Materials: 82% Polyamide, 18% Elastane, 62% Polyamide, 16% Aramid, 12% Elastane, 10% Polyester
Sizes available: XXS-XXL

If there’s one feature that makes the Fjallraven Abisko Trekking Tights stand out, it’s their reinforced panels. 

High-quality leggings for hiking with reinforced panels (like those pictured here) are suitable for high-friction activities like rock climbing.

Trekking leggings vs. trekking tights– what’s the difference?

Not much, just the name! Trekking simply refers to a long or strenuous journey. If a legging is marketed as a trekking legging like this one, it means you’re getting durable leggings.

For me, the only con about these leggings is their very distinctive look. Personally, it’s not my style. My friend loves them, though– they’re her favorite hiking leggings. 

(I do love the little Fjallraven fox logo on the side of the leg, though!)


  • Reinforced panels
  • Durable fabric
  • Multiple color options


  • High price point


Outdoor Research Ferrosi Leggings

Best Quick-Dry Hiking Leggings 

Product image for the Outdoor Research Ferrosi Leggings in dark blue.

Waist-length: Mid-rise
Materials: 90-denier 86% Ripstop Nylon (46% recycled), 14% Spandex (Knees/Seat: 91% CORDURA Nylon, 9% Spandex)
Sizes available: XS-XL

The Outdoor Research Ferrosi Leggings are the most durable and technical leggings from Outdoor Research.

Ferrosi fabric is a lightweight, weather-resistant, and stretchy fabric made from nylon and Spandex. 

Great for rock climbing or strenuous hikes, they’ll hold up better than other leggings during these high-impact activities. 

Stretch panels at the knees and stretch fabric for the body make them ultra-flexible and breathable leggings. The elastic waistband has a mesh lining, furthering the breathability. 

The side pockets are thigh pockets, but there’s also a zippered right hip pocket.

The knees and ‘seat’ (bum) mean you can sit on or scale up rocks without worrying about damaging your leggings. Choose these if you’re ready for action.


  • UPF 50+
  • Drawcord waist 
  • Thigh pockets


  • Very athletic look


Eddie Bauer Trail Tight

Best Hiking Leggings for Plus-Sized Women

Product image for the Eddie Bauer Trail Tight in black.

Waist-length: n/a
Materials: 88% Polyester, 12% Spandex
Sizes available: XS-3X

By their own words, the Eddie Bauer Trail Tight is made for hiking and scrambling. I love that, as I’ve felt like more of a scrambler at times. 

In my opinion, these are well-rounded hiking tights. The stretchy material is a moisture-wicking fabric that also helps control odor. In addition to the wide waistband, these are a comfortable option.  

The Eddie Bauer trail tight makes a good choice for anyone looking for plus-size leggings.

The size options range from XXS-3X, but they also have additional plus-size makes of the tights.


  • UPF 50+
  • Odor control
  • Moisture wicking
  • Multiple color options
  • Super stretchy


  • Long leggings may not work well for shorter builds


Patagonia Pack Tights

Most Versatile Hiking Leggings

Product image for the Patagonia Pack Tights in dark grey.

Waist-length: High-rise
Materials: 87% Polyester, 13% spandex, double-knit jersey
Sizes available: XS-2X, Plus Sizes, Petite, Standard, Tall

The Patagonia Pack Tights are slim-fitting and versatile. 

What I like most about the Patagonia pack is its simple design. It makes these super versatile leggings easy to wear anywhere. 

They’re well-suited for hiking but don’t look exclusively like hiking leggings. 

They’re composed of stretchy fabric and a wide waistband, making them a comfortable choice. 

Plus, if you choose these, you should know they come from a fair trade factory– which we always support!


  • UPF 50+ protection
  • Odor control
  • Comfortable
  • Versatile


  • They will wear out a bit over time

Athleta Hybrid Cargo II Tight

Best Hiking Leggings with Pockets 

Product image for the Athleta Hybrid Cargo II Tight in black.

Waist-length: Natural-waist
Materials: Recycled nylon, Spandex
Sizes available: 0-26

Athleta makes great workout pieces, so it’s no surprise you’ll find good leggings for hiking with the Athleta Hybrid Cargo II Tight.

With such a sleek look, I bet you’ll be just as surprised as I was to learn that these hiking tights have SIX pockets! And they’re zippered pockets at that. 

That detail makes them our pick as the best leggings for hiking with– you guessed it!– pockets. 

Their features don’t stop at the pockets, though. These hiking tights have an internal drawstring that helps fit the waist to your body. 

While the fabric isn’t totally waterproof, it is water repellent, abrasion resistant, and protects your skin from the sun. 

They’re pretty versatile, too, so you can dress them up or down. 

I’d love to pay a bit less, but at the same time, I know I’m paying for quality with a choice like this.


  • Internal drawstring
  • UPF 50+ protection
  • Water-repellent
  • Abrasion resistant


  • High price point
  • Minimal color options


Alo Cargo Leggings

Most Stylish Hiking Leggings

Product image for the Alo Cargo Leggings in black.

Waist-length: High-rise
Materials: 87% Nylon, 13% elastane
Sizes available: XXS-L

The standout feature of the Alo Cargo Leggings is their design, and that’s primarily due to their pockets. 

The first time I saw these, I thought there were also pockets at the knees. But, actually, they’re reinforced panels! Alo found a way to continue the square motif throughout the legging while adding another practical feature. 

There are four pockets in total: two on the sides of the thighs and two pockets up by the hips.

While the side pockets aren’t zippered, they have a flap covering them (making them similar to drop-in cargo pockets). 

The compression fabric is nylon and elastane but has a matte finish, which gives these leggings a cotton-like feel. 

They’re super comfy while still giving off some style.

Heads up– even though these say they’re an ankle-length style, they run pretty long.


  • Multiple pockets
  • High quality
  • Four-way stretch
  • Reinforced knee
  • Compression fabric


  • High price point 
  • Not inclusive sizing
  • Only two color options

Fabletics Anywhere Motion365+ Utility Legging

Best Leggings for Trail Running

Product image for the Fabletics Anywhere Motion365+ Utility Legging in black.

Waist-length: High-rise
Materials: 73% Recycled Polyester/27% Elastane
Sizes available: XXS-4X (Short, Regular, Tall)

Fabletics has a place in my heart because they make my favorite everyday wear leggings (the Define Power Hold), so I was excited to see they have an excellent legging for hiking.

The Fabletics Anywhere Motion365+ Utility Legging is good for support and motion.

They’re made of Fabletic’s Motion365 fabric, which is polyester and elastane. Fabletics has labeled it their most versatile fabric for sculpting your curves while remaining breathable at the same time. 

They’ve got an ‘invisible’ zip pocket on the back waistband and open pockets near the hips. 

I’m fond of Fabeltics products and the brand as a whole. Whenever I shop for a new legging style, I check to see what they have. 

Fabletics offers a ’90 Day Perfect Fit Guarantee’. If you try them on and are unhappy with how your leggings fit, you can return them with no problem.


  • Moisture-Wicking
  • Short, regular, tall options
  • 90-day fit guarantee


  • Only one solid color option


REI Co-op Flash Hybrid Tights

Best Hiking Leggings for Hot Weather 

Product image for the REI Co-op Flash Hybrid Tights in grey-purple.

Waist-length: High-rise
Materials: 88% Nylon, 12% Spandex (Sides, Waist, and Ankles: 85% Polyester, 15% Spandex)
Sizes available: XS-XL

You may assume it’s not feasible to wear leggings for summer hikes (or any warm-weather hiking), but a choice like the REI Co-op Flash Hybrid Tights proves that theory wrong.

These are some of the best lightweight hiking leggings. Their stretch jersey fabric offers breathability. They have a high waistband but an ankle cut– leaving less of your leg covered. 

If you need a summer hiking legging, opt for something with a lightweight fabric and a shorter length like these.


  • Pockets
  • UPF 50
  • Breathable 
  • Abrasion resistant
  • Quicky dry


  • Relatively minimal size options

BALEAF 7/8 Workout Athletic Leggings for Women

Best Budget Hiking Leggings

Product image for the BALEAF 7/8 Workout Athletic Leggings for Women in pink.

Waist-length: High waist
Materials: 80% Nylon, 20% Spandex
Sizes available: XS to 3XL

If you want a simple, easily accessible, inexpensive pair of leggings, go with the BALEAF 7/8 Workout Athletic Leggings for Women

The quality may not compare to some of the high-end leggings on this list, but that doesn’t mean you won’t enjoy these. 

Plus, maybe you want a pair of leggings to take on hikes that could get messy– like a pair of painting pants. 

These leggings come with a high waist and a seamless inner thigh. They’re moisture-wicking, stretchy, and have deep, open side pockets. 

Pants or leggings always get extra points in my book when they come in different height options– these leggings come with your choice of a 23″, 25″, and 27″ inseam. 

(Keep in mind that the original style of the leggings is a ⅞ look, so they’ll already be an ankle-length design).


  • Multiple inseam options
  • Moisture wicking
  • Seamless inner thigh


  • Quality meets pricepoint 
  • No zippered pockets

Carhartt Women’s Force-Fitted Lightweight Lined Legging

Most Durable Hiking Leggings

Product image for the Carhartt Women's Force-Fitted Lightweight Lined Legging in black.

Waist-length: Mid-rise
Materials: 95% Nylon, 5% spandex
Sizes available: XS-3X (Regular, Tall)

The Carhartt Force-Fitted Lightweight Lined Legging hints at its strengths in its title.

These leggings are made from peak abrasion-resistant fabric. If you want resilience in hiking leggings, these are for you!

Additionally, they make for some of the best waterproof hiking leggings because of the durable water-repellent fabric.

The flip side is (despite the word ‘lightweight’ being in the title) the fabric isn’t as breathable as other leggings on this list. They may feel more like hiking pants– they’re fitted and mid-rise.

People still find them quite comfortable, so don’t let that discourage you! 

They aren’t so heavy that you can’t wear them in warm weather. They’re also pretty close to being waterproof hiking leggings.

Plus, they have two zippered pockets– one on each leg. 

The Carhartt Women’s Force-Fitted Heavyweight Legging will be the best hiking legging to wear through very dense or obstructed routes.


  • Odor resistant
  • Fast dry 
  • Side pockets


  • Less stretch
  • Heavier fabric


CRZ YOGA Thermal Fleece Lined Leggings

Best Hiking Leggings for Cold Weather

Product image for the CRZ YOGA Thermal Fleece Lined Leggings in black.

Waist-length: High-rise
Materials: 87% Polyamide, 13% Spandex, Thermal Fleece Lining
Sizes available: XXS-XL

The CRZ YOGA Thermal Fleece Lined Leggings are excellent winter hiking leggings.

The best winter hiking leggings will be warm leggings with an added layer or feature that helps retain heat. 

A fantastic material to look for in any cold-weather hiking gear is merino wool. Merino wool regulates your body temperature, whether in cold or warm weather. 

But merino wool can get pricy. It’s often sold as a relatively thin legging, making it best to use as a base layer underneath hiking pants.

That’s where thermal fleece-lined leggings like these come in!

I’ve named these the best winter hiking leggings because they have fleece on the inside. This will feel like a blanket wrapping around your leg in the best way possible. 

Storage-wise, they come with two side pockets and a small zippered pocket on the back waistband. 

These would be great for backpacking trips where you may be going through different temperatures. Throw these in your bag as an option in case you get cold. 

Whether you’re looking for cold-weather leggings or you’re someone who just wants the best warm leggings– consider getting something fleece-lined.


  • Water-resistant
  • Comfy
  • Warm
  • Side pockets


  • Could show wear after time

Buying Guide: How to Choose Hiking Leggings

A woman wearing a black tank and dark red leggings walks toward an old gate in a California farmland landscape.

Let’s discuss the factors to consider when selecting a pair of hiking pants, hiking tights, or hiking leggings.


Do you want something stretchy? Breathable? Durable? Is moisture-wicking fabric a must for you? 

Think about your answers to these questions when weighing your options for hiking pants and leggings.


Your ideal pricepoint is entirely dependent on how much you are able to spend. 

Beyond your own personal budget, your preference about quantity vs. quality is important to consider. 

Would you rather have two lower-cost pairs that serve different needs or one more expensive pair that meets in the middle?


Will you rely on the pockets in your leggings for carrying belongings, or will you bring a bag you can use? What kinds of items do you want to have at immediate reach?


Weather plays an important part in the leggings you select. In warmer temperatures, breathable fabric will matter more than it will on cold weather hikes. 

If you’re hiking in summertime, it’s especially crucial to look for breathable leggings.


If you’re hiking on a clear path hike, it might be okay to have exposed calves or ankles. If that’s the case, it’s fine to opt for cropped legging. 

Depending on the type of hiking you’ll be doing, it may be best that you’re covered with a full-length option.


Are you headed on a wide-open or obstructed trail? Will you be using these leggings for other activities, and if so, what kind? 

If you’re an intrepid hiker, you will want leggings that function as durable hiking pants. 

FAQs About Hiking Leggings

Two smiling women in leggings hiking up a rocky trail in a mountainous landscape.

What are the best leggings for hiking?

Choosing hiking leggings can be daunting because leggings come in various styles. Off the top of my head, I can think of compression leggings, leisure, yoga, utility, etc. But the list goes on and on.

When choosing leggings for hiking, I think your best bet will be performance leggings. 

Interchangeable with the term workout leggings, these are designed for physical activity. 

Usually, they’ll have features like supportive and sculpting material, a high waist, and sweat-wicking fabric. 

A bonus is if the leggings you choose have pockets (which many performance leggings do!)

Is it okay to hike in leggings?

Yes, you can absolutely use leggings as hiking pants. Your hiking closet can comprise various styles of tops, pants, and shoes– leggings included.  

If you want to better understand how to build up your outdoor clothing closet, check out this video by Amanda Outside:

Should I wear leggings or pants for hiking?

Leggings and hiking pants are each going to offer different features.

Usually, hiking pants will be more durable (unless you consider a highly durable option like the Carhartt Force Fitted Lightweight Lined Legging). 

Hiking tights or leggings tend to be much more comfortable, which may help you feel like you can move much more freely. 

The choice is entirely up to you and what bottoms you feel most comfortable in.

Is hiking in leggings disgusting?

No, not at all! People wear leggings for high-intensity workouts. Therefore, leggings are no stranger to sweat. In fact, most leggings are designed to repel it!

That being said, I’d avoid a pair of cotton leggings. Cotton will retain moisture and stay wet and clingy because of it.

Also, choose a pair of leggings that fits your body well. The last thing you want is to be fidgeting with your bottoms all day, shifting them here and there…potentially even causing an accidental camel toe. 

You’ll want a pair that hugs your body in a supportive (not sticky!) way. For example, as a short person, I always look for a pair that doesn’t pool around my ankles.

Choosing the right pair of hiking leggings will help you feel anything but disgusting. 

Conclusion: Our Pick for the Best Hiking Leggings

A woman wearing black leggings, a blue shirt, and a backpack poses on the rocky overlook at the top of a hill overlooking a suburban California valley.

If I had to choose the best leggings for hiking, I would go with the Lululemon Cargo Super-High-Rise Hiking Tights.

I just love that these tights have a little bit of everything. They have open pockets, zippered pockets, a carabiner clip, a locker loop on the back of the waistband…the list goes on.

Furthermore, they were explicitly designed with hiking in mind. Between that and the standard quality of products from Lululemon, these are leggings I wouldn’t hesitate to take on my next hike. 


Monroe Dziersk smiling as she poses high up above the skyline

Monroe Dziersk

Monroe Dziersk is a twenty-something American who’s lived in the USA, Italy, and Czechia. Monroe’s wardrobe is heavily influenced by her years of traveling. She loves finding practical, comfortable pieces that evoke the classy Italian aesthetic and work for any occasion. Her style was quite playful growing up, but since moving to Europe, she has a newfound love for neutrals and sophistication. That being said, playful pieces still get the best of her from time to time!

With her expert eye for style, Monroe writes reviews and guides to help fellow travelers find reliable brands and pieces to use for both day-to-day life and travel experiences.

Looking for more hiking and travel gear? Check out these related articles below!

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Best Handheld GPS Devices for Hiking

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A woman in black leggings, a green tank, and hiking boots stands next to a totem-like pole at the rocky summit of a mountain overlooking a suburban valley, with  clear blue sky behind her, with the text overlay, "Best Hiking Legging."

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Hi, I'm Mimi! I'm an outdoorsy Californian who has spent over 28 years immersed in the incredible natural beauty that California has to offer. My goal is to inspire others to get out and find their next adventure in California. Whether it’s escaping to an alpine lake in the Sierras, finding peace among the giant redwoods, or road tripping down the PCH, there’s always more to explore in this beautiful state.


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