The REI Trailmade Collection: Top Picks From REI’s New Inclusive-Sizing Technical Line

This is a sponsored post brought to you by REI.

If anyone can attest to the importance of fit and function in technical outdoor clothing, it’s me. In 2014 I was invited on my first overnight backpacking trip, and my lack of proper clothing almost resulted in disaster.

My cotton hoodie and leggings got soaked, temps dipped into the 30s overnight, and I nearly became hypothermic from the combination of wet clothes, freezing temps, and a sleeping bag that wouldn’t zip over my shoulders. Ultimately, I decided to pack up camp in the middle of the night, hike out, and spend the remaining early morning hours in a trailhead bathroom at the bottom of Mount Rogers.

I’d trained my body for weeks for this trip, but it simply wasn’t possible to prepare myself to face the elements because I couldn’t find technical clothing or backpacking gear in my size. Lacking access to those things put me in danger.

That trip made me realize the importance of technical outdoor clothing for people of every size and every skill level. I’m happy to report that in the past nine years, many companies have stepped up to fill the void. Enter the REI Trailmade line: a new collection of gender- and size-inclusive gear and technical clothing.

hiker stands in front of waterfall wearing colorful REI Trailmade shorts and pullover

About Trailmade

REI created the Trailmade line with input from BIPOC, LGBTQ+, and plus-size industry leaders and co-op members. What came to light as a result of these collaborations was that new hikers struggle most with finding the proper fit and also with being intimidated by complicated products.

With this input in mind, the collection was designed to provide flattering and comfortable fits and fabrics, minimize complicated features, and incorporate user-friendly designs that can be used by anyone—regardless of their size, body type, and skill level.

The line also features gender-free sizing in products like the Trailmade sleeping bag, pad, and trekking poles, and colorways that focus on gender-free expression in apparel.

The best part? Trailmade items are offered IN STORE, not just online, in the full range of sizes. I recently had the opportunity to test out a few items in this new product line, and what follows is my review of these key pieces.

Shop the REI Trailmade Collection

REI Co-op Trailmade Amphib Shorts – Women’s

  • Available in sizes XS – 3X
  • Comes in 4 colors (2 prints, 2 solids)
  • 89% nylon/11% polyester with durable water repellent (DWR) finish
  • MSRP: $49.95

Men’s version here.

These shorts are for the outdoor enthusiast who wants to be able to go from the water to the trail and back. Lightweight, quick-drying, and comfortable to wear, the Amphib shorts blur the line between hiking and watersports gear.

I tested these shorts while hiking along the Little Stoney National Recreation Trail, hopping in and out of streams, wading into plunge pools to photograph waterfalls, and inching into the spray zones. My favorite thing about these shorts is the lightweight fabric and the three large, useable pockets.

Note: While the shorts have enough stretch to be easy to move in and provide a looser fit through the upper thigh for maximum mobility, it is important to know that the waistband doesn’t have a ton of stretch. This will keep them from slipping off of you when you fall off your raft and into the river or decide to hop off your paddle board into the lake, but it means you definitely need the correct size if you want to be able to get them over your hips.

Shop the Women’s Amphib Shorts Shop the Men’s Amphib Shorts

REI Co-op Trailmade Soft-Shell Anorak – Women’s

hiker adjusts drawstring hem of REI Trailmade Anorak

  • Available in sizes XS – 3X
  • Comes in 3 fun color combinations
  • 88% nylon/12% spandex (bluesign approved) windproof/water-resistant fabric
  • Weight: 14.1 ounces
  • MSRP: $99.95

Men’s version here.

I was thrilled to see the Soft-Shell Anorak offered in REI’s new Trailmade line. This shell provides a flattering fit, just the right amount of stretch to be able to move freely while still maintaining its wind-proof and water-resistant properties, and comes in colors other than black!

This product is for hikers who believe there’s no such thing as bad hiking weather and who want functional clothing to prove it.

I tested this shell on an unseasonably cool, windy, and drizzly day hiking in southwestern Virginia and was impressed with its comfort, breathability, and function. I stayed dry, felt protected from the elements, and did not overheat.

As a plus-sized hiker, I have never owned a wind shell before because I’ve never found one that fits. This shell is the perfect addition to my hiking wardrobe, and its durable materials and design will make it a staple in my kit for years to come.

Shop the Women’s Soft Shell Anorak Shop the Men’s Soft Shell Anorak

REI Co-op Trailmade Fleece Pants – Women’s

  • Available in sizes XS – 3X as well as Petite, Regular, and Tall lengths
  • Comes in two colors
  • Made of recycled polyester fleece
  • Weight: 9.8oz
  • MSRP: $59.95

Men’s version here.

My absolute favorite thing to do after the end of a long hiking day is to arrive at camp and change out of the sweaty compression leggings or shorts I’ve been hiking in all day and into something soft, cozy, and loose-fitting.

As someone who has hiked and backpacked hundreds of miles and generally spends as many nights outside as inside each year, my go-to “camp pants” have historically been literal pajama pants because up until now, a product didn’t exist that fit my “lightweight, cozy, soft, loose-fitting” requirements.

These pants are an actual game changer. They are impossibly soft, the fit is both flattering and comfortable, and they are lighter weight than any other jogger-style camp pants I’ve found both within and outside of outdoor-specific clothing lines.

I tested these pants during several nights camping on the Foothills Trail in North and South Carolina in late spring. They kept me warm at night while I was making dinner and sitting around camp chatting.

Note: these are probably slightly heavy for the gram weenie ultralight backpacker, but if, like me, you’re a hiker who prioritizes camp comfort over ounce counting, you’re going to love these pants.

Shop the Women’s Fleece Pants Shop the Men’s Fleece Pants

REI Co-op Trailmade 60 Pack – Women’s

hiker walks down forested trail with trekking poles and blue rei trailmade backpack

  • Fits waist sizes:
    • Regular: XS – XL (32-42 inches)
    • Extended: 2X – 4X (42-58 inches)
  • Fits torso length 15 – 19 inches
  • Capacity: 60L or 3,661 cubic inches
  • Weight:
    • Regular: 3 lbs. 4 oz
    • Extended: 3 lbs. 10 oz.
  • Price: $149.00

One of my favorite things about this pack is its adjustability to fit a wide variety of bodies. The adjustable torso means my best friend and I can both comfortably wear this pack, even though I’m 5’3 and she’s 5’10. The pack also boasts an extended size range that fits up to a 4X, or 58-inch, waist without having to add additional belt length or webbing.

I tested this pack in the extended size (I’m a women’s size 16/18 or 1X with a 43-inch waist) on the Little Stoney National Recreation Trail in southwest Virginia and along a section of the Foothills Trail in South Carolina. The fit is comfortable, and the pack carries a balanced load without feeling cumbersome or top-heavy.

Another major perk of this pack is the price point. Similar fully framed packs cost anywhere from $50-150 more than the Trailmade 60. And at 3lb, 4oz, while it won’t win any ultralight awards, the weight is actually up to a pound less than other similarly styled, full-frame packs with extended sizing options.

Finally, the intuitive design couples user-friendliness with maximum function. This pack won’t intimidate first-time backpackers, but it still offers all the features experienced users have come to desire: top loading, a separate sleeping bag compartment, multiple storage compartments for organization, easy-to-reach water bottle pockets (even for my super short tyrannosaurus arms!), roomy hip-belt pockets (read: pockets you can actually use), and easy-to-use adjustments.

Shop the Women’s 60L Pack Shop the Men’s 60L Pack


Overall, I’m THRILLED to see REI offering this innovative line of hiking gear. It’s so easy as a new hiker to get sucked into needing to be ultralight, being told that you’re not a real hiker if you don’t have the most expensive new gear, or worse, not being able to go safely because you can’t find gear that fits or that you can learn to use without taking a class.

The REI Trailmade line offers solutions to these problems: extended sizes, affordability, comfort, usability, and durability. If you’re a new hiker looking to get started without breaking the bank or an experienced hiker looking for gear that fits better (and comes in cute colors/patterns), you’ll find something in the REI Trailmade line that works for you.

I only tested a small sampling of the items offered in this product line. Check it out and you’ll find tents, sleeping bags, hiking pants, and more, all designed to fit any budget and any body.

More From the Collection

Shop the REI Trailmade Collection

Featured image: Photo via Stacia Bennett; Graphic design by Zack Goldmann.

Affiliate Disclosure

This website contains affiliate links, which means The Trek may receive a percentage of any product or service you purchase using the links in the articles or advertisements. The buyer pays the same price as they would otherwise, and your purchase helps to support The Trek's ongoing goal to serve you quality backpacking advice and information. Thanks for your support!

To learn more, please visit the About This Site page.

Comments 1

What Do You Think?