Pearl Izumi Canyon WRX Shell Shorts Review
The Canyon WRX are durable, weather resistant biking shorts designed to ride out the worst weather. Do they hold up to the highly varying weather I ride in? I’ve put them through the test for several months, and this is my review:
The WRX Shell shorts are a 3 layer, water resistant breathable shorts. They have a zippered pocket, two stretchy front pockets, a full length front zipper and a clip enclosure. They are made from 100% recycled polyester, layered up and coated with the DWR to provide weather resistance. They have a 11.5 inch inseam, are kneepad compatible, and come in a slightly relaxed fit. They retail for $80 and are available now.
Biking in the WRX has been an overall great experience. I’ve found them to be comfortable, performant and barely there on long rides, which is key with any biking short. They achieved this with careful material choice and construction, and I’ll explain. The polyester is a smooth, tightly wound fabric that is rather friction free as a result, especially when appropriately paired with an padded under layer (padded shorts are the way I prefer to ride). The material’s seams are all tucked inward and sewn flat inside the shorts, removing friction and snag points from the outside that would otherwise rub against the bike seat, allowing for smoother pedaling and more control when shifting around. The waist is made to be slightly elastic with a stretchy section in the back that allows it to hug the body without being constricting. It also features a generously wide fabric band waist that functions as sudo-padding, which works quite well with bibs and shorts alike. I didn’t have any issue with them slipping or shifting either despite them having no included belt, but they do have the loops so you can add one yourself if need be. They do seem to run mostly true to size, so you can trust their size chart.
I found the weather resistance of these shorts to be quite good, with the DWR doing a solid shedding mud and light rain alike. Even when caught in surprise rain showers that had water streaming up from my tires, they managed to keep by inner layers dry and clean. I wouldn’t call them water “proof” per say, but they certainly hold up well enough to keep shorts and liners dry in intermittent showers, and dry up rather quickly when the deluge fades.
Durability has been quite great with these, as the fabric is smooth and rugged, shrugging off constant friction caused by rubbing along my seat and other components. I’m yet to see any fraying or thinning of the materials, with the DWR surviving multiple washing, which can be reapplied if need be.
I found the shorts to run just a little on the small side, but still general fit as expected based on their size chart. It has more of a road / gravel fit with a slight snugness to the waist despite it being advertised as “relaxed”, which is probably a good thing for their design. Still, I found myself with plenty of room in the thighs and crotch for thicker padding, and didn’t have any discomfort over longer rides.
I really like the WRX shorts. They have held up to several months of vigorous use and have proven to be great options for road riding, commute and gravel biking. I would prefer something with a little more flex and space for mountain biking, but that’s not quite what these were designed for, although they’ll certainly do the trick. The shorts look great, come in at a fair price, and should last many seasons based on my testing, especially with the occasional cleaning and treatment of the DWR.
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I wanted to extend a huge thank you to Pearl Izumi for sending this over for review. We couldn’t do this without their help.
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