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Keela HW Op Walking Trousers

When walking on the Cornish Coast Path there are plenty of opportunities to be thankful for the stretch in the HW Op Trousers from Keela [©JG]

Designed for the very active user, these HW Op Trousers from Keela are a great, flexible, and well specified trouser, writes Mike Gormley.


Keela have again increased their range of very practical trousers. Some of the other trousers in the Keela range have stretch fabric to allow the wearer full freedom of movement. My ‘go-to’ Keela trousers have been the Scuffers for some time now, but in my mind they are let down a little by not having easy access leg pockets. The HW Ops do.

The ability to bend the knee to the extremes without the material going tight and restricting movement is a real asset [©JG]

These HW Op, i.e. Heavy Weight Operational, trousers use a hybrid four-way Stretch-Tec fabric to enable full movement when at maximum extension. They are comfortable to wear in all situations but when you have to really extend to step up or bend, they work with you so not to hinder your movement. Less energy used and just easy to operate in. The waistband is also given an element of stretch to allow for a good, but flexible, fit.

The leg pockets allow for a decent size item, such as a phone, to be easily available when sitting or standing ~ both leg pockets have zip closures to keep items secure [©MG]

The areas that will come in for the most abrasion are given an additional layer of more resilient Nylon rip-stop fabric to improved longevity and user protection. The materials used are wind resistant and also offer some protection against the wet. They will dry quickly, both out on the hill and when washed, so are easy to care for. Hip pockets have both ‘quick access’ and inner zipped pockets for more security of smaller items. The inner fabric offers a soft feel comfort but is not hot if busy/exerting.

The base of the legs, inverted here, have a zip and on the inner side double layered protection against scuffing ~ note also the soft feel inner material and elasticated pull toggle adjustment [©MG]

The lower leg is where things for me are perhaps not as good as they could be. I ‘get’ that, for the type of end user these are aimed at will not be wanting floppy ‘bell bottoms’ to hinder and get caught up on things. But for me, these are a bit tight and really won’t fall naturally over my boots. Even if I pull them down over, they soon rise up and then won’t fall back while in use. This could be a ‘me thing’ as I have quite large feet, and therefore large boots, so for those of more ‘normal’ sizes in that area this may not be an issue.

The waist of the HW Op trousers is part elasticated and has double fixings [©MG]

Compared to my Scuffers these are considerably tighter. There are side zips and toggled drawcords to further tighten up the lower leg, but in my case, these are not required. All this said I have worn these trousers a great deal as I find them on the whole good and fit for purpose, plus those added leg pockets make all the difference. Produced in Black, the HW Ops are available in ten waist sizes from 28” to 46” and three leg lengths.

Actions such as this can be difficult and energy consuming in tight trousers, especially if the conditions demand it often [©JG]

[images © Jean or Mike Gormley]


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