Overall Rating: (5/5) Highly Recommended
As evidenced in an earlier post, I purchased a pair of Rivendell’s MUSA Rain Pants at their debut (Size L) with the intent of using them on our around the world cycling trip. Having been on the road now for a few months I feel ready to provide a review.
Being as I’m 6’2″ tall and ~170 pounds, I typically purchase “Tall” versions of cycling pants, if available (which they rarely are). So, aside from Rivendell’s MUSA rain pants being a bit too short in the leg for my 33.5″ inseam and not having quite enough rise or high enough cut in the back to adequately cover the waist on the Swrve knickers I usually have on underneath, these pants have worked well for me. It’s worth mentioning that I never worry about the pants covering my waist anyway since the drop tail on my Cutter Cyclical eVent rain jacket neatly covers anything exposed.
I appreciate the super durable fabric (this is not your standard lightweight ripstop nylon), even though, as I suspected, the legs showed road grime stains after their first use (which do not come out in the wash). “Made in USA” and utilizing Japanese-made material meets my requirements for country of origin (no sweat shop) but I wish domestically produced eVent could have been used instead. According to information found on eventfabrics.com, BHA Group, the company that manufactures eVent fabric, still has two factories in North America producing something out of eVent but I don’t know if it is appropriate for rain pants.
Thanks to the almost full-length 2-way leg zips, it is possible to introduce your warm legs to some ventilation but don’t expect to deploy these pants in temps above 60 degrees if there’s any climbing on your route or you’ll be sure to overheat even with the vents fully open. Of course, that’s true for any full length rain pant I’ve ever owned.
Zipped or unzipped (when conditions permit) the rain and road grime are kept clear of my legs (and shoes when used in conjunction with the most excellent Taiga Works Dry Foot Cycle Gaiters) plus the bright color provides good visibility for unsuspecting motorists. The pants pack up into a reasonably small roll, approximately the size of a Nalgene bottle, and are easy to stash when not in use.
Expedition Grade Quality
These are expedition quality rain/shell pants, as evidenced by the snow sledding photos at the bottom of the description on Rivendell’s website (try doing that in weightweenie rain pants), and are my ‘go to’ pants when it’s cold and wet and/or really cold. Another FYI: Long-johns or fleece pants worn underneath transform these into bombproof shell pants.
Within the limitations discussed above, I heartily recommend these pants to anyone looking for highly durable and 100% waterproof lower body protection.