Club Ride Chachi Bike Short ReviewJuly 20, 2018
- Waterproof coating
- Great style and versatility
- Belt loops and Velcro tab fit options
- Hip pocket too small for a plus-size phone.
- Less protective
The Chachi have a snug, but elastic fit, which helps keep them from snagging on the seat while mounting and dismounting. They have an 11-inch inseam, shorter than many in the test, perfect for the more frequent and furious pedaling of cross-country riding. They’re a little less protective, but a little cooler. Belt loops plus internal elastic Velcro waistband adjusters mean you can dial in the fit with or without a belt. The higher back helps ward off plumber’s crack.
Only a pair of vertical-zippered hip pockets distinguish the Chachi from a pair of casual walk-around-shorts. The shorter inseam and twin back pockets mean these can easily double as a pair of hiking shorts. We like the different colored band across the back that slightly overlaps the back pockets—forming a sort of rooftop to help keep cargo in.
A stretchy, relatively lightweight fabric means all day comfort. No vents on the Chachi, but given the midweight fabric and shorter inseam, you won’t miss them.
Six pockets means lots of features. Our quibble is that the hip pockets—the best spot to keep a phone for quick photo access and to prevent it from getting in the way of pedaling—are too small for plus-sized phones. We like having both belt loops and Velcro tabs to dial in fit.
With a shorter hem length, these aren’t the most protective shorts. The stretchy mid-weight fabric will help dampen tumbles on gravel, though—stretchier fabrics have a little give that helps absorb some of the friction in a fall.Continue Reading
Our testing team tested the shorts in and around Minneapolis and Duluth, Minnesota; Sedona and Tucson, Arizona, Jackson, Wyoming and Moab, Utah over a period of two months on asphalt, gravel, and singletrack in temperatures ranging from the low 40’s to the mid-90’s and on distances that ranged from six miles to 56. Our testing team did not intentionally set out to test the durability of each pair of shorts in a crash. Instead, to judge the shorts’ ability to withstand impact, they scrutinized their construction materials, the weight of the fabric and the stitching. Though, there may have been some crashes anyway.
Frederick Reimers was the editor of Canoe and Kayak Magazine from 2007-09 and has been writing for Outside, Men's Journal, Skiing and Powder ever since.