One big challenge to being a plain-clothes bike commuter is finding pants that’ll move with you, give a little weather protection, are durable, and don’t look like cycling pants. The Thunderbolt Sportswear Mark II Original Jeans fit the bill on all fronts.
For active travel in cool climates Thunderbolt jeans are an excellent choice. Despite the ‘jeans’ tag, they’re not denim, but a technical fabric which is wind-resistant, water-resistant and dirt-resistant on the outside while comfortable on the inside thanks to its soft lining and four-way stretch. So you can wear them all day, sightseeing in the city or hiking in the hills, and they still look good when you go to a bar in the evening.
Missions to Mars aren’t the only dreams engineers are carrying around in their pulsing grey matter. These Active Junky selections turn yesterday’s imaginings into relevant products ready to wear and carry now.
Walk it. Ride it. Get on the next jet to nowhere and you’re ready with this Portland designed-and-sewn pant. Active Junky plowed in to life, powered by Schoeller Dryskin soft-shell fabric with integrated NanoSphere treatment. Even without a Nobel Prize, you’ll turn the mysteries of the sub-molecular cosmos into a great fitting, nearly-armored pair that tips the scales at only about a pound. Testers loved the unhemmed approach to getting started with a waistband that’s more for via ferrata than franks and tatter tots. Fit trim with straight legs and a stealth right rear pocket, Thunderbolt Original Jeans still allow four-way stretch to escape with your anatomy feeling good and your style more than intact. Other than a pair of boardshorts, this product caps off your quick-escape packing list even if nasty weather is anticipated. Call it on the money. And on the mark.
Best For: Casual to commute to travel as a quiver-of-one pant vetted by demanding reviewers at Active Junky
The Thunderbolt Sportswear Original Jeans – Mark II are not denim. They’re Schoeller Dryskin Soft-shell, which is perhaps one of the greatest fabrics ever to grace my skin. The “soft-shell” part of the name means it’s fleecy on the inside, which makes them super soft but a little warm, putting them squarely in the not-for-summer category. They’re a basic five pocket design and come in three colors – slate (gray), original (basically black with contrasting stitching), and Blacktop (tested, black with black stitching). Sizing runs from 28 to 38 in even sizes with 30, 32 and unhemmed lengths. I tested 34 x Unhemmed and fit was true to size. I’m typically a big 33, so I order 34 to make room for my massive burrito meals and general comfort.
The pants are designed and sewn in Portland, OR, using the Swiss fabric. They have a light 4-way stretch, are wind repellant and have a Nano-Sphere water resistant coating on top of the Dryskin fabric’s inherent water repellency.
Unhemmed length should easily suit up to a 36″ inseam, and I’ve simply folded mine up once until I can get to a tailor (aka “Sweetie”).
On the bike and off, they move right and sit well. They’re straight leg, which works well for muscular thighs (which I’ll have one day because #everydayislegday).