New G-1000 outdoor kecks from Swedish brand mix mad colours with interesting fabric and features.
'Interesting' is one of those oddly versatile words with the potential to mean anything from just plain 'weird' right through to genuinely, well, thought-provoking. We'd say the recently-arrived Fjällräven Keb Trousers have a foot in both camps, metaphorically speaking anyway.
Like the Skogsö Jacket we also have in for review, it uses Fjällräven's closely woven Polyester-cotton based G-1000 fabric, but in this case it's mixed with additional panels of stretch fabric which is a mix of Polyamide (Nylon) with 2% elastane. In the pics, the yellow panels are G-1000, the brown ones are the stretch fabric.
Interesting Colour Choice
That means the front of the crotch, rear of the thighs and the rear yoke have built-in stretch while the rest of the garment is tough, weather-resistant, canvas-feeling G-1000 Eco. And like the Skogsö, that G-1000 is an, erm, 'interesting' shade of ochre, or indeed, bright yellow.
The colour's great on the jacket, on legwear however, it's a slightly niche choice, particularly when teamed with the jacket. To be fair though, there are also more muted all-black and khaki/green options along with a 'thought-provoking' red and black variant.
They're featured too in an interesting way. There are big overtrouser-stye venting zips at both thigh and calf, so cooling shouldn't be an issue. Then there are the slightly retro cargo-type pockets at the top of the thighs plus an elasticated ankle cuff strap which fastens with press-studs to allow a better boot to trouser seal with a lace-hook built-in to keep things together. There are belt-loops but no belt supplied and a double button waist fastening with zip-fly.
Once on, they feel really nice, the G-1000 fabric is comfortable against the skin, the fit is good helped by articulated knees and those stretch panels. They feel nicely tough and weather resistant and not remotely restrictive either. Kind of like a more canvassy-feeling soft shell trouser and the option of being able to vent big time using those side-zips makes them an attractive potential all-round mountain option even in summer.
There's a product video on YouTube too if you want to see the various features in action. We're positive about Keb, even if it does sounds a little like an Ikea shelving unit. Our one initial reservation - and maybe we're just shallow - is the colour scheme, though to be fair, you don't often spend much time looking at your own legs, so it's more of a concern for others' aesthetic sensibilities and after a few hours of wear, they started to look oddly normal to us. Aesthetic aclimatisation anyone?
We're looking forward to getting some hill miles in with Keb and reporting back - we like G-1000, it's wind and rain resistant, still decently breathable and can be waxed up to your preference so we're expecting good things.
In the mean time, we can also tell you that he/they weigh(s) 630g in a 32" waist and that they retail for somewhere around £150. Not cheap, but then they're sort of a halfway house between a conventional trekking pant and a shell trouser.
There's more information at www.fjallraven.com.