As a person concerned with being practical and tactical with my everyday carry, I struggle to find clothing that can fill my need to maintain being comfortable, lightweight, flexible and realistic to wear every day without looking like a military wannabe. It’s difficult to find clothing that fulfills the role of professionalism, utility, tactical and durability. I did, however, find the 5.11 Taclite pro line of tactical pants and clothing and I am very satisfied thus far. The 5.11 Tactical Pants are worn by everyone from military to law enforcement, but can easily be worn as everyday work pants. I bought myself a couple pairs to check out and beat up, just to see how they would fit and conform to my everyday life. One of my concerns was that living in southern California, there are not many cold days and I tend to run hot. Consequently, I needed pants that would not overheat me, while still being rugged enough to be durable in a limited tactical role. I’ve tried many types of tactical pants and have found that each of them lack in certain areas while having strong characteristics in others. Here is what I found regarding the 5.11 tactical pants, the TacLite Pro.
Perfect Fit Out-of-the-box
These pants fit exactly for my normal size of 40 waist and 32 length. Usually I struggle to find pants for my exact size. I have bigger thighs and most often I need to find baggy pants or settle for a larger size waist to accommodate my legs. Not with these pants. They fit perfect in the waist and the legs. The pants have a rip stop fabric that I like, and is not so heavy as to have me sweating profusely underneath. The first day that I wore them, they were a little stiff, but after one wash they became extremely comfortable.
Pockets to carry everthing
The thing I love most about these pants is the number and size of these pockets. I can carry so many things for Everyday Carry, that I almost don’t need a backpack. From a tactical standpoint, I can carry a gun with numerous magazines inside the pockets if I chose to. The side pockets on the lower part of the pants have elastic inside to hold a magazine in place without it moving around in the pocket. The rear seat pockets are wide enough to carry several 30 round m4 magazines in the event that I don’t have a dump pouch to hold empty magazines after use. I stuffed 6 full, 30-round magazines into these pockets and still had room for more. The front pockets are easily accessible with a small Velcro closure to keep your gear inside
under less than optimal conditions. In front of the normal front pockets is an additional pocket that can hold other gear. I carry a Spyderco Delica 4 and a Streamlight Stylus Pro flashlight in this pocket with room to spare. I could also carry a pistol magazine for a Glock if I desired.
Above the front pockets is an integrated d-ring attached to the front belt loop. The belt loops can accommodate a 1.75-inch Belt. I choose to wear the 5.11 Tactical Gunner’s Apex Belt, which looks stylish and is strong enough to support the pants along with a full-sized firearm, extra magazines, an HK Dispatch Knife with sheath, and two extra magazines.
Inside the legs of the pants there is space to integrate kneepads. The fabric of the pants is treated with a Teflon treatment that makes the pants virtually waterproof. Along with the rip-stop fabric, these pants are extremely durable and used by military and law enforcement personnel around the world. Given 5.11 Tactical’s reputation for quality products, I was not surprised with the quality of these pants. They make these pants in several colors as well.
- TDU Khaki
- TDU Green
- Dark Navy
- Battle Brown
The only drawbacks that I would give these pants is that they are a little hot to wear, especially in the summer and are a little more expensive than pants that I would typically purchase, but I feel like you are paying for the extra quality and utility. In the summer, I can always switch to the 5.11 Tactical TacLite Pro Shorts or the 5.11 Tactical Traverse Pants.
Color-wise, I can only get away with wearing 3 or 4 colors, black, khaki, and green. Maybe coyote or dark blue or gray occasionally, but I don’t want to overdo it and sometimes I just should wear other brands of pants.
There is a strap that runs across both back pockets that I have had catch on branches and nails and, to me, it feels a little misplaced and could instead be on the inside of the pants versus outside, but overall, is not a problem but is useful if you need to hang something in the short-term, like a water bottle, tactical cap or shemagh.
Overall, I love 5.11 tactical pants and most things produced by 5.11 Tactical. Their products are always well-made and thought out. They really fulfill the purpose that they were designed for and more. I wear these often and I still feel stylish while feeling prepared. I can wear these in a work environment as well as a tactical environment without requiring any drastic changes. I can carry gear without it appearing that I’m loaded down and I know that if push comes to shove, I can operate tactically without fear of the pants failing me. I would highly recommend these for everyday carry.