Alpinestars Pathfinder Shorts - Review

Oct 13, 2014
by Mike Kazimer  
Alpinestars Pathfinder short review

Alpinestars Pathfinder Shorts

After getting their start in the motocross world nearly 50 years ago, Alpinestars have gone on to broaden their offerings to include auto racing and cycling. Need a pair of Nomex socks? Or maybe kangaroo leather driving shoes? Alpinestars can help. Their mountain bike collection has expanded over the past few seasons, and the Pathfinder is the Italian brand's basic trail short, constructed from an abrasion resistant stretch polyester that's intended for everyday riding. A 14” inseam puts them just below the knee, and an elasticized panel at the rear of the shorts allows the Pathfinder to contour to the body during pedaling. A mesh panel is found on the rear of each leg in order to provide ventilation on rides where the temperature climbs. Wide velcro straps are in place on each side of the waist band for fine tuning the fit, and there are two hip pockets plus a zippered pocket on the right thigh. Available in black, grey, and khaki the Pathfinder shorts retails for $74.95 USD. Alpinestars also offers a version with a detachable chamois liner for $114.95. www.alpinestars.com

Alpinestars Pathfinder short review

The Pathfinder has everything you'd expect from a well thought out riding short, including an adjustable waist band, vented panels, and a zippered side pocket.



Pinkbike's Take:
bigquotesCreating shorts that fit well and remain unobtrusive out on the trail isn't as easy as it seems, but Alpinestars have done a good job with the design of the Pathfinder. They're not overburdened with extra pockets or zippers, and the cut isn't excessively baggy, which made me choose to wear them time and time again over a number of other options. The fit of the Pathfinder is on the slim side, which worked well for my body type, but riders with quads the size of tree trunks may want to try them on first to make sure they're not overly tight. That same slim fit also means that the shorts will hang up on bulkier knee pads, but lower profile pads fit without any trouble.

As far as the fabric itself goes, it seems to have the ideal amount of stretch to it, offering just enough elasticity to allow for comfortable pedaling while still staying out of the way of bike seats and dropper post levers. It's also resisted the abrasion that comes with muddy, wet weather riding without ripping or tearing, although the stitching has come undone on the hem of one of the legs. The placement of the mesh panels on the back of the legs is a little curious - they didn't offer as much ventilation as shorts with vents located on the front or on the inseam, but the fabric is light enough that they remained comfortable on all but the hottest midsummer rides. As I was turning my thoughts about the Pathfinder shorts into words on the screen, I was ready to call them 'outstanding' due to their fit and functional design, but then I noticed the unraveling seam on the hem of the left leg. That takes them down a notch in the durability department, but considering how many long rides they saw before those threads decided to come undone, these shorts are still certainly worth a try. - Mike Kazimer


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Mentions: @AlpinestarsMTB




51 Comments

  • + 13
 I don't know about all you guys, but I can't stand having anything (besides maybe a 5-20 dollar bill in my riding shorts). Anything more is annoying at 80rpm's.
  • + 2
 I keep a bit of goggle wipe in my short pocket , even that annoys me
  • + 3
 What's 80rpm?
  • + 6
 Revolutions per minute, in other words: how fast you pedal.
  • + 9
 Thanks thesn00ze.
  • - 1
 Exactly. And I wouldn't try it with the dollar bill either, on Sunday I kept a train ticket in my pants (Alpinestars All Mountain WR) and after 3 hours of riding it was destroyed beyond recogtnition.
  • + 3
 VTwintips - 80rpm and 5-20 dollar bill, yea, I feel you man. I like lower cadences on harder gears like 50-60rpm, so i can totaly put a whole wallet inside and since I have carbon frame and carbon rims, there are several 100 bills. That is not a problem though, when I used to be a poor roadie, compromising lack of a carbon bike by training hard and turning circles at 90-110rpm (commonly recognized as efficient and so proved by science of cyclogy) i couldn't bare the bouse of coins in my fanny pack
  • + 6
 I won't have a 5-$20 bill to carry after I buy these.
  • + 0
 Condoms.
  • + 13
 Does it have a velcro fly too? I had some AS shorts that did and the fly kept opening, not great when you work with kids.
  • + 18
 These have a zippered fly, which should help you keep your job.
  • + 1
 When I was at summer camp our trip leader was teaching us how to use a compass. "Put the red in the shed" he told us over and over. Little did he know our lack of looking in his direction and our laughing was due to his contradictory statement.

Needless to say, going commando while working with kids is the real problem here.
  • + 1
 These are exactly the typo of shorts that will show your butt crack, way too low on the waist.
  • + 8
 They need a new lower price
  • + 0
 They're worth the money, I have them, good even for several hours of riding. And the detachable inner part can be used with any other shorts or pants.
  • + 11
 If they think I'm parting with that much money for a pair of shorts, they must be higher than their prices.
  • + 3
 China? No thanks. I once ordered these shorts (the same model) from a Chinese seller on eBay and they never arrived and a couple of weeks later his account disappeared from eBay. I got a refund from PayPal but I wouln't try it again, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. I'll rather spend $100 than lose $30.
  • + 1
 @Extremmist I know what you mean, but I've ordered 2 pair and had nothing but good experience.
  • + 2
 Fakes. Glad your experience has been good.
  • + 1
 My friend had some of those and they got shredded a bit faster, but they still looked the part and also looked comfortable.
  • + 1
 They sound good but I need pockets that have zippers or velcro flaps. Wallet, phone, keys, and maybe a map. I ride from my house and like the convenience of well placed, secure pockets. I have the local maps in my phone and don't want to dig through my pack to check it. Stop for beer and pizza after a good rip, wallet is in my rear pocket. They are pricey but I tend to buy on sale but then I'm a cranky old pensioner.
  • + 3
 Do shorts really have to go over $50 these days? I wonder what the profit margins are on these.
  • + 1
 most of the manufacturing work in pants and shorts happens above the knees
  • + 1
 especially shorts!
  • + 4
 I can relate to these more than the kitsbows
  • + 4
 Why the fuck are they so expensive. They should be 40 bucks max. !!!
  • + 1
 You think that's bad fox attack ultra shorts are 170 bucks.
  • + 2
 This review will be relevant next year when I'm buying last years stuff on sale!!!
  • + 1
 It seems like the only difference between all the mtb/enduro shorts are $$$
  • + 0
 Shorts are shorts, I don't know about you but it seems a lot of the "specs" seem to be relatively constistant across most models
  • + 4
 Yup! And all the bikes are the same too. In fact, there should just be one of everything, then there would be no decisions to make, life would be so much easier without options.
  • + 1
 Imagine pb without the wheel size debate...
  • + 1
 Yeh, skip all the "specs" and give us stuff the last more than 3 rides. The last pair of Alpinestars shorts I had lasted all of 2 weeks...apparently AS shorts are not made for general trail riding.
  • + 2
 Just got some Dakine 8 tracks - look better, 400d fabric and have belt loops and a lift pass pouch for my next trip to the Alps :-). On sale here for $55.
  • + 1
 Apart from the logo they look exactly the same as my RF shorts from three years ago
  • + 1
 you have to look like an Enduro geek/catalogue model to look cool
  • + 1
 Yeah these are exactly the type of shorts that will show your butt crack
  • + 1
 Cotton needs new shorts..
  • + 0
 WTF..........are they made out of carbon too????? Don't they they come in any other shite colors too???? FAIL
  • + 1
 Is it me, or are baggies these days getting less... baggy?
  • + 1
 It's the skinny dork look, it's all the rage these days. I'm so over mtb specific clothes.
  • + 3
 You need skinny shorts, brah. To go with your skinny jeans, your manpris, and your emo/hipster style.
  • - 2
 No zips on pockets: massive fail. Stuff can fall out and getting the nose of your saddle caught in your pocket on a gnarly descent is no fun at all.
  • + 1
 I'm not sure I'd call it a 'massive fail' - there's a zipper on the side pocket, and I never had any trouble with the hip pockets catching on anything.
  • + 1
 These could be my pants!
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