Fjällräven Abisko Women's Winter Stretch Trousers review: protection and unrestricted movement on cold and wet expeditions

Warm, stretchy and hardwearing, these PFC-free softshell trekking trousers are great for winter adventures

Fjallraven Abisko Winter Stretch Trousers
(Image: © Future)

Advnture Verdict

If you want to keep hiking year-round, these tough-yet-comfortable softshell pants will keep you warm and dry on expeditions where you need to be able to move and stay protected from the elements


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    PFC-free DWR

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    Comfortable and stretchy

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    Three zipped pockets

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    Belt loops and adjustable cuffs


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    Not for warm weather

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    No map pocket

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Fjällräven Abisko Women's Winter Stretch Trousers: first impressions 

Built for those who love winter hiking and snowshoeing, these women's hiking pants offer solid protection when you're contending with cold, snow, wind and even a light rain. Fjällräven sets you up for protection against a cold wind with a softshell pant made using recycled nylon and polyester that's tough against abrasive rock and overgrown trails. 

The lining is brushed so it's insulating on a cold day and soft against your skin, while the face fabric is treated with a PFC-free DWR so you'll stay dry in a light rain without having to whip out your rain pants.


• Style: Softshell
• RRP:
• Gender specification: Women's only
• Sizes: Women's US 2 - 16, UK 6 - 20
• Weight: 14.8 oz / 420 g  (women's US 4)
• Materials: 9% polyamide (recycled), 43% polyester, 8% elastane, PFC-free DWR
• Colors: Deep forest, Dark navy, Blacl
• Best use: Hiking, trekking, snowshoeing

Four-way stretch and articulated knees mean you'll be able to move in any way you like when you're negotiating steep slopes, boulders and stiles or just want to sit down for lunch in comfort. You can adjust these pants at the cuffs while the elasticated waist has belt loops for easy tailoring. If you buy your regular sise, there's enough room to layer these over your thermal leggings and they're not loose enough that it's difficult to wear waterproofs on top, but you might want to size down for a more flattering fit.

Three zipped pockets (two hand warming and one thigh) are practical enough to carry small items, and we like that the thigh pocket is towards the back of your thigh so it doesn't get in the way of you stepping uphill. That said, none is big enough for a map. These hiking pants are on the pricey end of things, but they're tough enough to withstand years of hiking and worth the money if you plan to be out in the cold, and they're easy to wipe clean if you encounter mud on the trail.

Fjällräven Abisko Women's Winter Stretch Trousers: in the field

Fjallraven Abisko Winter Stretch Trousers

If you buy your regular sise, there's enough room to layer these over your thermal leggings and they're not loose enough that it's difficult to wear waterproofs on top (Image credit: Future)

Cold weather has not been in short supply in Scotland this winter and while my legs don't suffer too much from the cold when I'm hiking, I do like to switch to a softshell pant at this time of year to keep the chill off. I've had great luck with Fjällräven hiking pants in the past so when I was offered the chance to test these, I jumped and I've been wearing them outdoors exclusively for the past couple of months.

Here's how they performed:

Sizing and fit 

I tested a US 4 which is my typical size. I wear the Fjällräven Keb Curved in this size and they are a perfect fit, however I think given the choice I'd go down a size in these ones. They do fit and they're very comfortable but they're just a little long and have a bit of extra of fabric around the knees. That said, overall they have a flattering, high waisted cut and I can tell they'd look really nice if they were just a little smaller and would probably wear them all day.

Fjallraven Abisko Winter Stretch Trousers

They're flattering, but I'd size down (Image credit: Future)

Temperature regulation and weather protection

I've been testing these in cold weather since that's what they're designed for and that's what we have and I've been benefitting from the brushed lining. I haven't got too warm in them, though I don't really get sweaty legs, especially in cold weather. I also haven't overheated in them when I've worn them indoors, so I'm working on the assumption that the breathability is good. That said, I wouldn't wear them in warm or even mild conditions.

The wind protection is great and I'm never aware of a Scottish breeze getting in through the pores, and while they're not waterproof, the DWR holds up against a drizzle and even wet snow.

Comfort and durability

Not all hiking pants are very comfortable, and that seems to ring extra true for heavier winter trousers, but these are really comfy, so much so that I've worn them for a few trips where I'm going to be sitting in the car or on a train for hours. It's a combination of lots of stretch and the brushed lining combined with a well-designed fit that makes them so comfortable, even when I'm sitting down.

The face fabric is tough enough to withstand your typical trail hazards from abrasive surfaces to thorny branches so I expect to be able to wear these for years, and they're really easy to maintain. If the legs get muddy, I can just give them a wipe so they don't require lots of washing which means they should hold up to the test of time.

Fjällräven Abisko Women's Winter Stretch Trousers: the bottom line 

If your regular hiking pants aren't cutting it against the cold and you want something that offers more protection without being overly warm, swishy or bulky, these trousers will keep you warm and dry in most cold weather excursions and are comfortable and good-looking to boot. They're definitely at a higher price point, however, so if you want something that's more affordable with the same benefits and a nice fit, check out the Rab Women's Sawtooth pants.

Julia Clarke

Julia Clarke is a staff writer for and the author of the book Restorative Yoga for Beginners. She loves to explore mountains on foot, bike, skis and belay and then recover on the the yoga mat. Julia graduated with a degree in journalism in 2004 and spent eight years working as a radio presenter in Kansas City, Vermont, Boston and New York City before discovering the joys of the Rocky Mountains. She then detoured west to Colorado and enjoyed 11 years teaching yoga in Vail before returning to her hometown of Glasgow, Scotland in 2020 to focus on family and writing.