A field test of tactical pants that you could wear almost everywhere (except for a wedding, maybe)
These camo pants got a not-so-subtle upgrade that’s worth noticing
Sponsored by GovX
By Sean Curtis for PoliceOne BrandFocus
Pulling on the Tru-Spec 24-7 Series pants had the funny effect of taking me back in time. I wore battle dress uniforms (BDUs) as a kid. I used to hang around the Army/Navy store, ran around the woods in camo on scout trips, and though I never joined the service, I was a reserve deputy by the time I was 18. From there, I ended up wearing BDUs more than I would have imagined, especially while I was on the SWAT team. Tru-Spec’s 24-7 pants reminded me of the traditional military garb, but looks can be deceiving. These pants a lot more advanced in many ways.
My initial impression
When Gov X sent the pants to me for review, I got busy quickly. My schedule was filled with range days and this was the perfect environment for testing. Over the course of several weeks, I used the 24-7s to test for comfort, durability, and functionality. When I first picked the pants up out of the box, I was impressed with how durable they felt. A visual inspection revealed doubled stitching in high-stress areas, and when I pinched the material in my hands, I could tell it was doubled in certain areas like the knees.
Think of these pants as an upgrade of what you’d expect from BDUs. The plastic buttons are replaced with a metal snap— it’s just one more thing that you can’t go wrong in the field. The long zipper meant they were a little more high-waisted than I am typically used to, but they fit well. On top of that, the waistband has the stretching front panel which comes in handy for those whose beltline may have expanded. More importantly, it allows in the waistband (ITW) holsters to be worn without a whole lot of agony over pants size. Over the course of several weekends, I tested the pants at the range.
I liked how the pants look. They are sharp, professional, and showed evidence of creases down the front when I stood in relaxed positions. The 24-7 Tactical Pants could serve easily as a Class B uniform pant and they come in ten different colors to suit almost any agency’s needs. Overall the look is functional without appearing overly tactical.
The comfort I experienced while testing these pants was outstanding. Sure, I can’t call them a pair of pajamas, but the cut and material make it to where you have complete freedom of movement without pinching or binding.
Climbing a fence, squatting, or running around did not produce any issues. The knees were impressively reinforced, allowing me to kneel on dirt, gravel, even asphalt without kneepads. However, reaching inside I was able to feel there are pockets in the knees so you can insert pads should you need or want.
On top of that, the pants are tough—I’m talking rack your slide tough. While conducting a one-handed pistol reload drill, I like to keep an open mind about options in a pinch. Looking at the joints on these pants, I inverted the slide, pushed the rear site against the seam, and gave it a push. I was able to chamber a round easily (with no harm to the pants) and get back in the fight. Normal scrapes and snags did not occur, everything simply brushed past without grabbing.
I began to wonder if a rattlesnake could even penetrate them but did not care to test the prospect out personally.
While the 24-7s don’t shed water, they do hold their shape and function when soaked through.
Packed with features
Some of the design elements that tell me these pants are way out in front of the classic BDU are first and foremost the comfort. After that, the next thing signaling is the intelligent design of the pockets. The front pockets are deep and slashed so I can access them easily. In the same proximity is a small utility pocket, just behind the front pockets. This is an outstanding idea because I can park a knife, a multi-tool, or a small flashlight there without clipping it to my front pocket. This may seem like a small thing, but not having a clipped tool dragging on your hand or wrist every time you access your pocket is an extremely nice touch. The rear pockets are flapped and gusseted allowing for plenty of storage. They also are located nice and high, so you aren’t sitting on a wallet in your car or while at the office typing reports.
The cargo pockets located on the thighs have a considerable amount of thought put into them. Inside, there are three areas for storage. Consider two-column style pockets with a divider between capable of storing two 30 rounds magazines securely in place without letting them bounce around. Outside this, there is still an open area for storage that will hold a lot of gear or loose ammunition. I liked being able to stash tourniquets on my right-side magazine slots, and combat gauze in the general pocket, while magazines and ammo filled the left side. Even the flaps that cover the pockets are well planned. Cut at an angle, the flaps are longer toward the rear and taper toward the front of the leg. Though there are hook and loop attachments, this means you only have to pull the rear up to open the entire pocket. These modern marvels stayed closed despite my running around with capacity testing loads. There is another external pocket and flap on the outside of the main pouch though it is smaller in nature.
After banging around the range testing with rifle and pistol loadouts while wearing a modern duty belt, I can proclaim these pants are certainly equal to any task I encountered when I was on duty, probably more. The 1.5-inch belt loops were sturdy and held my under belt well while allowing good hook and loop to my duty belt. Not only were the pants comfortable, but they are likely more durable than anything I previously had access to.
I could see the Tru-Specs providing several years of service without breaking down or wearing thin. On top of that, they look professional and provide an incredible amount of utility. When you can stow these crucial items in a fashion that allows you to deploy them quickly without having to fish around, now that is a tactical advantage.