Getting ready to ride up the Nemo trail on the Idaho side of Teton Pass for an after-work bike ride on a mid-80s July afternoon, I was trying my best not to be hot and bothered.

The car had been parked in the full sun at the trailhead, and as I lathered up with sunscreen and couldn’t find my bug spray, I could feel the motivation slipping away. A few pedal strokes in, though, I was in the shade and instantly felt better. My mood improved even more as I rode through the forest, appreciating my new Pearl Izumi Women’s Canyon Shorts for their buttery softness and lightweight, moisture-wicking comfort.

On the climb up, my mind wandered and decompressed from the day, and I barely noticed that my Pearl Izumi Women’s Canyon Shorts were there because of how perfectly they conformed to my body. Back at the trailhead and belly up to the bar at the barbeque spot in Victor, Idaho, I was surprised that I didn’t feel the need to immediately change out of my bike shorts like I usually do, to get rid of the soggy-diaper feeling. The detachable inner liner shorts were the secret weapon. Form-fitting, and made from a very light and moisture-wicking stretch mesh, they wicked and dried out faster than my other bike shorts. The built in “3-D”-contoured chamois, made from a soft, padded, and non-bulky microfiber really tied it all together in a nice svelte package.

The Pearl Izumi Women’s Canyon Shorts outer shell had bold, mountain-biker colors that were fun on the trail and also looked styling enough to wear for après at the rooftop bar. I really liked how they fit me–stretchy, flattering, and a nice length around three inches above my knees (they have an eight-inch inseam), without being either too baggy or uptight. The waistband adjustments were hidden on the inside for a cleaner look, and the fabric was super soft, light, and breathable against my skin. There’s a stash pocket on the left side that is big enough for energy gels or even a cell phone.

I prefer the look of mountain bike clothing over road bike clothing, so I’ve worn the Pearl Izumi Women’s Canyon Shorts for both activities throughout the summer and think they work great for both. Pearl Izumi has been around for 60 years, constantly innovating, so these shorts have a lot of great technology built in and it shows in how they fit and perform.

The Pearl Izumi Canyon Shorts are available for women in XS-XXL in Black/Monument Grey, Viridian Green, Deep Indigo, and for men in XS-XXL in Red Orange or Black. I typically wear a size four or small in bottoms, but sized up to the medium and they fit perfectly. The Pearl Izumi women’s mountain bike line includes several great options for color-coordinated tops, including the Journey Tank and Launch Jersey, for putting together a stylin’ “kit.”

BOTTOM LINE: These flattering mountain bike shorts are super comfortable from the inside out.

Manufacturer’s Site: www.pearlizumi.com

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