It took an exhaustive search to find these pants. I think I tried every pair of motorcycle pants in the store, and most definitely in the women’s section. When I saw these tucked behind the oversized display of men’s jackets, I knew I’d found a winner.

Yes, they are “men’s” pants, but they illustrate how a brand can get a fit right for both sexes. I had been struggling to find a pair of overpants that didn’t have a 9 inch zipper translating into a 11 inch rise. Call me crazy but I can wear a normal bra when I ride; I don’t have to use my beltline to provide extra support. When I saw the 4″ zipper on the Traverse pants, my hopes rose. Sure enough, they fit great down around the hips, and have an elastic gusset on the back that keeps your lower back covered even when seated on the bike. They fit women AND men perfectly, with a relaxed fit and room for armor.

I could only find the regular inseam, which is very short indeed and required an investment to have additional fabric tacked onto the bottom. When all was said and done I added three inches to the inseam, and I’m only 5’5″. You’d have to be awfully small to find the regular length adequate especially when seated on the bike. Everything else about the fit is great, from the knee armor pocket placement to the roomy straight leg design. The leather patches on the inside seams keep heat deflection from your engine to a minimum, which I hadn’t realized until I rode without wearing these and my legs overheated almost immediately. Who knew it would be more comfortable to wear overpants in 100 degree heat?

There are big vents in front (which, to be fussy, could be located more to the outside – they can’t be closed when seated because your leg position will make the zippers gape when open. Moving them to the outside would help) and smaller ones at the back of the thigh. I think relocating the big vents to the outside would make for better airflow, and inner-thigh vents would be more than welcome. It’s really only a problem in very hot weather, though, so if you ride in temperate climes you probably won’t have any issues. With the vents closed (oops) they stayed really waterproof even in torrential Colombia downpours.

The only problem I had with these pants was with the velcro lower leg closure. Velcro really is a poor choice for anything that needs to be fastened really well, and the inadequate velcro meant to provide adjustments to the fit around boots and lower legs really created some issues. Any time the pants caught on the pegs, the velcro would rip right open and I’d be stuck trying to close it, usually while riding (impossible) or awkwardly duck-walking my bike to a parking location so I could get off and readjust the pants. I was doing some pretty hairy riding in Colombia with these pants and a few times this issue was incredibly unwelcome. A zipper adjustment would be better, or at least SOMETHING other than crappy velcro.

Aside from that, I love these pants and I love that finally someone figured out that the same cut can work for men AND women. If you’re tired of the mom-jeans look for your motorcycle pants, give these a try.