Columbia Rebel Roamer Pants Review

The Columbia Rebel Roamer Pants are popular budget rain pants. While not designed for heavy weather, they will provide protection in normal conditions.

Columbia Men's Rebel Roamer Pant, Waterproof & Breathable Black

Buying options: 

Pros / Reasons to Buy

  • Low price
  • Lightweight

Cons / Reasons to Avoid

  • No pockets or zips
  • Won’t fit over larger boots

See the Columbia Rebel Roamer pants in more detail: 

These rain pants are ideal if you are looking for a budget pair you can carry with you in case it rains. They have few features, but they will keep you dry and comfortable if you get caught in the rain. The simplicity of these pants is actually part of their appeal. The lack of pockets, zips, and other extra features helps keep these pants lightweight. There are no openings on these pants, so there is nowhere for rain to leak in.

The main thing you want from a pair of hiking pants is to keep you warm and dry when you get caught in the rain on the trail, and these pants will do that. Columbia does not have a women’s version of the Rebel Roamer, but they make other rain pants specifically for women. We picked the Columbia Rebel Roamer Pants as the best value rain pants for men.

Compare similar products: 

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Marmot Minimalist Pant
Outdoor Research Helium Pant
Arc'teryx Beta AR Pant
Mamot PreCip Eco Pant Full Zip
The North Face Men's Antora Hiking Pants
Rab Downpour Eco Pant
Columbia Rebel Roamer
Showers Pass Transit
Mountain Hardwear Women's Stretch Ozonic Pant, Black, Small
MARMOT Men's Minimalist Pant, Black, Medium
Outdoor Research Women's Helium Rain Pants – Breathable & Weatherproof Pants Black
Arc'teryx Beta AR Pant Men's | Versatile Gore-Tex Pro Pant for All Round Use | Black, Large
MARMOT Women's PreCip Eco Full Zip Pant | Lightweight, Waterproof Pants for Women, Ideal for Hiking, Jogging, and Camping, 75% Recycled, Black, Medium
THE NORTH FACE Men's Antora Rain Pant, Vanadis Grey, Medium Regular
RAB Men's Downpour Eco Pants Waterproof Breathable Rain Pants for Hiking & Trekking - Black - Medium
Columbia Men's Rebel Roamer Pant, Waterproof & Breathable Black
Showers Pass Men's Transit Waterproof & Breathable Ultralight & Packable Waterproof Rain Pants - Black Color - Size XX-Large
Buying Options
Our Award
Women's Performance
Women's Best Lightweight
Men's Performance
Women's Best Rain Pant for Hiking
Men's Best Value
Men's Best Cycling
Waterproof Fabric
2.5L Dry.Q Stretch Ripstop
2.5L Gore-Tex with PacLite Technology
2.5L Pertex Shield Diamond Fuse
Gore-Tex Pro
Nono Pro Eco
2L DryVent Seam Sealed
Pertex Shield Membrane
Omni-Tech Waterproof/Breathable
Nylon
Face Fabric
100% Recycled Polyester
100% Polyester
30D 100& Nylon Ripstop
N40r-X Gore-Tex Pro
100% Recycled Nylon Ripstop
100% Recycled Nylon Ripstop with DWR Finish
Artex 3-Layer
70D 100% Nylon
Artex 3-Layer
Cost
$110.98
$184.95
$129.95
Price not available
$101.42
$60.12
$105.00
$60.00
Price not available

Analysis and Test Results

The Omni-Tech fabric that is the primary material of these hiking pants is designed to cope with moderate rain and snow, and it does a good job of that, but don’t expect it to keep you dry if you are in a heavy rainstorm. The breathability is fine for hiking but not if you exert yourself and there are no vents or zips to provide extra ventilation.

The waistband is elasticated with a toggle to cinch it securely, so you don’t have to worry about the pants falling down. It will fit comfortably under a harness or the waist strap on a backpack. The cuffs do not have any zips, but they are wide with Velcro strips to pull them tighter. The fit is quite baggy, so they can pulled on over small hiking boots or shoes, but if you are wearing anything bigger, you will have to take your boots off to get these on.

While it may sound like we are being very negative about these rain pants, they are ideal as a ‘just-in-case’ pair. They are lightweight, fold down into a compact bundle, and are great value for money.

Performance Comparison

Columbia Rebel Roamer Pant

Water Resistance

The Omni-Tech fabric used to make these hiking pants has a waterproof rating of 10,000 mm. It has a DWR (durable water repellent) coating to shed raindrops. This is good enough to keep you dry in normal conditions, but can’t cope with heavy rain. The seams are all well-taped, and there are no zips or pockets to allow rain in.

Breathability

The breathability of these hiking pants could be better. The Omni-Tech fabric has a breathability rating of 10,000 g/m2/24 hrs. There are no vents or zips to undo to increase the breathability.

Comfort and Mobility

The Columbia Rebel Roamer pants are comfortable to wear. They are quite loose and baggy, so they do not restrict your movement. There are Velcro strips on the cuffs to help pull in the excess material, but if you plan to wear them on a bike, you will need to take steps to make sure they don’t get caught in the chain. The waistband is elasticated and will sit comfortably under a harness or waist strap for a rucksack.

Columbia Rebel Roamer fabric

Materials

Columbia uses its own custom-designed fabric that it calls Omni-Tech. This is usually a 3-layer material with a waterproof membrane in the middle. The lining is soft against your skin. They typically add the Omni-Shield DWR which is stain-resistant as well as water repelling. These pants have no zips or buttons, so the only additional materials are the Velcro strips at the bottom of the trousers and the drawcord with a plastic toggle.

Durability

Despite the cheap price, these waterproof pants are hard-wearing. The Omni-Shield provides protection from dirt. There are no zips to break, and the seams are strong.

These rain pants come with a two-year warranty that covers defects in materials and workmanship. Columbia will either repair the product without charge, replace the product, or offer a credit note.

Weight and Packability

The lack of pockets and zips helps to make these hiking trousers lightweight. They pack down easily, but they don’t come with a bag or pocket to be folded into. The Columbia Rebel

Roamer waterproof pants weigh:

Men

354 g / 12.5 oz

Features

As you might expect from the budget price, the Columbia Rebel Roamer hiking pants have few features. At the bottom of the trouser legs, there are adjustable Velcro strips. The elasticated waist has a drawstring with a toggle to keep it fastened.

Columbia Rebel Roamer Pant

Sustainability

Columbia has a number of projects to increase the sustainability of their products. Their  Rethreads program encourages customers to donate worn-out clothing and shoes so they can be reprocessed, reused, and recycled. They are signed up for the Bluesign certification and other initiatives to reduce the environmental damage caused by the manufacturing process. One of their primary efforts is to create waterproof clothing that performs effectively without using Perfluorinated Compounds (PFCs). The Eco range uses recycled materials derived from plastic bottles, dye-free fabric, and responsible down.

Conclusion

These pants are very basic, but that isn’t a bad thing when it come at a budget price. You might not be getting all the bells and whistles of a top-of-the-range pair of rain pants, but you are getting value for money. The simplicity of these pants means there are no openings where rain can leak in. It also contributes to how lightweight they are, which is an advantage if you want to keep them in your backpack as a precaution in case it rains.

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