I've been well pleased with these 2009 Dakine 8 track freeride shorts. At a glance they look pretty plain in black with a discreet abstract grey print on one leg and the odd blue logo here and there.
Look a little closer though and you'll find the bright blue colour of the Dakine logo on the outside is continued on the inside all throughout the lining, inside the pockets and in the vents too. I love this. It's like you get the best of both worlds meaning you can enjoy crazy colours in the details without looking like some kind of fashion freak. The bright blue colour is pretty full-on though and has left me wondering what on earth I'll find to match it. Nothing, is the answer to that question I suspect, but the black, grey and blue combination really work even if you have nothing else in your biking wardrobe that won't totally clash. The knee length cut means I'd be happy wearing these shorts almost anywhere.
The fit is where these shorts really excel. It's seems to be the combination of the stretchy rear panel and the adjustable waste band with it's super easy to use velcro tabs located at either side that does it. Just pull them on, adjust the tabs and you're really to roll. I find these shorts super comfortable and I've even worn them with the inner liner from some Royal trail shorts for longer rides in colder weather with great results.
Performance is a plus too. The bright blue mesh lining does a great job of helping your skin to breath. Combine that with the fairly heavy duty fabric the majority of the shorts are made from, as well as the perfectly placed leg vents and you have a fantastic functional piece of kit. Useful pockets with large openings up front and slightly less useful zip pockets to the rear help create a great combination of function, performance and style. Would I get a second pair? Oh yes! Especially if they had a red and black colour option. Then I'd have a whole load of stuff to go with them.
Article: John Dunn