The Alpinestars Stella Nevada Pant is a robust winter mountain bike trouser for women that's roomier than most. Lightly insulated, it's a warm and comfy – if not completely waterproof – option for getting muddy in this winter.
This trouser (or pant if you're American) is a softshell-style material with a slightly fleecy backing. It benefits from a durable water repellent (DWR) treatment that fends off trail splash and light rain, though as always it's not fully waterproof.
The bottom of the legs get a tougher material from inner shin to ankle, making them more durable at the muddier end. I’d like to see the same material used over the rear too, however – the fabric has quickly worn and faded at the sit bones, from the motion of pedalling whilst covered in mud.
The waist closure is via popper, while Velcro tabs allow some adjustment. It’s adjustment you'll need, too – the Stella Nevada's are on the roomy side. I usually wear a size medium (UK 10) for shorts and trousers, and opted for a size 30 here (medium). I could have easily worn a 28 though.
That said, I like the fit. I can move easily, they're comfortable, large knee pads fit well and they aren’t unnecessarily tight around the crotch and thighs when pedalling. They're long though, and a little too long for me – I turned up the bottoms when riding to prevent bunching. Good for taller riders.
The zipped leg vents at each side feature a strap to stop them gaping too widely, which is a good idea. I didn’t need the vents often, as they breathe well without extra drafts, although the test period was fairly cold. There are also zips from ankle to knee to let you get at your knee pads without having to drop your trousers in the middle of the woods... another good idea! Lastly, the two hip pockets get zips, making them secure for essentials.
Most of this test involved getting completely caked in mud, and the Stella Nevada stood up to the abuse well. The slightly thicker material (thicker than ION Shelter pants for example) stopped any dirt or grit ingress. They fend off puddles well too.
One bonus is how windproof the Nevada is, especially as it's not a feature Alpinestars specifically mentions, as that's a huge benefit in staying warm during bad weather.
At £130, one thing the Stella Nevada Pant isn't is cheap. If you do a lot of pedalling in icy and frosty weather, however, then it's money well spent, especially if you like a baggy fit and/or proper room for substantial knee pads. It's worth noting that this version is from the AW2019 collection, however, so you might find a bargain online as we plunge – at least officially – into spring.
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