Craft Ride Shorts W ReviewJuly 14, 2018
- Stretchy fabric
- Reflective strip placement
The Craft Ride Shorts W have a very relaxed fit. They are made with a medium-weight ripstop fabric that offers excellent protection and the wide leg openings easily accommodate knee pads. However we found the very relaxed fit was baggy and the extra fabric that bunched up along the hips, front and rear had a tendency to catch on the seat and make them feel a size too big.
The waist is fully adjustable with Velcro tabs and belt loops to ensure a secure but comfortable fit. However some testers on our testing team found that when the tabs were cinched to her waist there was some puckering. When purchasing, cyclists may want to size down.
The Craft Ride Shorts W are made with a medium-weight stretch fabric. They have three pockets; two unsecured hand pockets and one rear pocket that is secured with a water-resistant zipper. The two hand pockets are moderately deep for carrying lightweight cargo that needn’t be secured. They do not accommodate smartphones. However, the rear pocket is conveniently placed and will hold a smartphone.
Internal Velcro waist adjustment tabs cinch in the waistband to assure minimal back gap and a comfortable fit. However because they have a relaxed fit, cyclists with smaller waists may experience bunching or puckering. The wide-panel construction of the waistband provides a comfortable low-rise in the front to reduce volume and a higher rise in the back for excellent low back coverage. Soft foam is added to the waistband for additional structure to prevent the back from sliding down.
The fly is secured with a sturdy zipper and two sturdy snap buttons and the protective 11-inch inseam easily accommodates knee pads. The Craft Ride Shorts W also have two horizontal strips of reflective tape on each leg and one small vertical strip on the back of the left leg. However, the horizontal strips are on the inside the cuff of the leg so to expose them the leg has to be folded/rolled up. This is likely to allow the rider to hide the strips during the day and only expose them when needed while riding in the dark.
Although the Craft Ride Shorts W do not come with an integrated chamois, our testing team found that the shorts accommodated all chamois worn and worked well with bibs and chamois cycling knickers on cooler days.
The Craft Ride Shorts W are constructed with a durable medium-weight stretch fabric and an 11-inch inseam. The single stitching could be straighter and with a heavier thread. They have a higher potential of holding up in a crash than the lighter-weight shorts like the Patagonia Dirt Roamers and the Maloja RoschiaM.
The Craft Ride’s medium-weight stretch fabric lends itself to good protection on low-impact crashes. The 11-inch inseam and wide leg openings easily accommodate knee pads.
Best suited for all-mountain, endure and the urban trails, we did not experience restricted mobility in the Craft Ride Shorts W. However the relaxed fit meant extra fabric that bunched in the front which reduced comfort slightly. Ventilation, however, was very good on warm and humid days. The wide waistband was very comfortable.
Our testing team tested the shorts in and around Minneapolis and Duluth, Minnesota; Sedona and Tucson, Arizona and Moab, Utah over a period of two months on asphalt, gravel, 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.
Marie Malinowski is a Minneapolis-based mountain biker, bike commuter, backpacker, and trail runner who covers our cycling accessories categories.