TNF Freedom Pant
I wouldn't call North Face's ski and snowboard-oriented Freedom pant perfect, but it does get a lot right, making it quite appealing for this price point. You'll have no trouble finding things to like about the Freedom pant, starting with its very economical price tag, and continuing with its vibrant color choices, relaxed fit options, and handsome styling
— February 21, 2011
Andy Lewicky is the author and creator of SierraDescents
Isaac March 1, 2011 at 1:03 pm
Picked up a pair of these at the beginning of this season as well. I must be one of those hot legged folks as I've had no problems with the cold despite a few frigid single digit days. I do tend to run hot though. Pow getting in hasn't been a problem either.
The different experience may be due to the fact I snowboard and the tops of my boots may be bulkier than your ski boots leaving less room for air, or snow, to get in.
I'm totally with you on hip pockets though, I never use them. I have found the velcro pocket handy, although it's obviously not for items that need to be super secure.
My biggest gripes are actually the rather puny leg zips and the relatively heavy weight, at least compared to pants 4x their price. These two features make them not quite perfect for high-output bc days but I've been quite happy with them for the price.
Andy March 2, 2011 at 10:40 am
In practice I'm finding the venting less annoying provided the temps aren't bitter cold, and snow doesn't seem to be getting in in troublesome quantities. You're right--they are a nice pant for the price, though mildly handicapped by some strange design choices.
James July 7, 2011 at 4:38 pm
Great review, good detail! I have a pair of the freedom pants, as mentioned the zipper pockets are a little awkward. For the price though these pants are tough to beat. North Face makes some really good gear, I can't remember really being disappointed with anything I've bought from North Face.
Jim December 20, 2011 at 8:58 am
Great review. Do you think these would be appropriate for general Sierra winter/spring mountaineering? I like the idea of a chimney effect venting system. Are the bottoms likely to snag on crampons?
Andy December 20, 2011 at 9:32 am
Jim, for anything involving climbing I tilt toward either a light and very breathable softshell pant or else full side zips for venting. These would be too warm for me except in midwinter...