As you know, we here at Run Oregon love trying new products. In addition to finding the right gear for our training plans and lifestyle, we like to explore gear from non-traditional running companies. Sometimes, a company that has amazing hiking, climbing, skiing, or rowing gear has pieces that translate directly to running; or branches out into running gear using the technology that serves its athletes well on the slopes or the ring.
Patagonia may not be the first company that comes to mind when you’re thinking of running tights, but they should definitely be on your list to check out. Along with lightweight jackets that keep you warm without adding bulk, their trail running line includes everything from sports bras to shorts, base layers and outer wraps, even accessories like hats, socks, and hydration packs. The colors of much of their gear are from rich, jewel-toned palettes, which are thankfully back in style (because I love me a good teal or raspberry top).
I tried out the Patagonia Peak Mission Tights, which come in both men’s and women’s sizing, and they quickly became my go-to for temps below 40 degrees. The thing I liked most about them was that although they are tights, they aren’t skin-tight, so they act like an insulator in keeping your legs warm and are easy to put on and take off. The material is what I’d call a medium weight, but is easy to pull up and stays in place – it doesn’t get “stuck” the way some heavier fabrics that don’t stretch will. I found there to be ample room in the calf, especially, so if you have trouble finding the right fit in tights, skinny jeans, and knee-high boots, these would work for you.
The wide waistband is another plus, since my days of having a perfectly flat stomach are far behind me, and there’s a flat drawstring that you can use if you want a more snug fit around the waist. There is a pocket in the back, which has a wide access zipper, and is deep enough for some bunched-up gloves, a car key, and a gu. The pocket might fit your phone, but I couldn’t get the zipper closed with mine in the pocket (probably because of the pop-socket).
The tights are ankle-length, so when it’s really cold, I wear ankle-height socks for complete skin coverage. Seams run down the front of the thigh along the back of the leg, off-center from the IT-band. I didn’t feel any hot spots or pressure points, just the incredibly soft fabric. These tights seem very soundly sewn and I wouldn’t be surprised if they held up for a really long time.
The women’s Peark Mission tights come in navy and black, and the size chart if pretty detailed, with sizes from XX-Small (jeans waist 24″) to X-Large (jeans waist about 35″). I went with a size M, and was happy with the fit and the lengths (I typically wear a size 8 in jeans). The navy tights have a turquoise detail line around the hips and matching cuffs. The black version’s contrast is a smoky grey. The men’s come in the same colors, but do not have contrast details. Both women’s and men’s tights are listed for $119. If you have these tights or other Patagonia running gear, share what you like about their products in the comments!