Last fall, I decided I was going to start biking more. And by biking more, I meant that I would volunteer at the Sacramento Valley California Native Plant Society about 11 miles away from me on the American River Bike Trail. It was a manageable ride, but after the several days of 2+ hours of riding, my sit bones were very upset with me. I started looking into getting more cycling appropriate clothing, and landed on the Wild Rye Eleanor Chammy as my very first pair of padded shorts. Here’s how they’ve held up to the test.
The Wild Rye Eleanor Chammy is a do-it-all pair. They are designed for keeping your bum comfortable on long rides, but are equally at home on a spin bike. With two slip pockets (I need legging/short pockets these days. The Arc’teryx Oriel Leggings ruined me.) and fun patterns, the Eleanor Chammy is the bike short that I reach for first.
Wild Rye Eleanor Chammy Specifications
|Main fabric: 79% recycled poly, 21% spandex
Leg bands: 64% poly, 16% elastic, 20% silicone
|173 gsm (grams per square meter)
|$115 from Wild Rye or REI
What I Loved
The prints. I was drawn to the Wild Rye Eleanor Chammy because there are so many fun prints. I’m not a fan of the basic and boring black. These are cute and have the perfect touch of femininity for a very male-dominated sport. These are so cute that 90% of the time, people don’t even realize that I’m wearing padded bike shorts until I am off the bike.
The pockets. I absolutely cannot survive without legging or short side pocket now. Forget those little zipper pockets on the small of your back, or the “pocket” that doesn’t actually fit anything other than one key disguised in your waistband, I want the slip pockets that can fit a phone! It works out really nicely if you’re running to the bathroom, or running to grab a coffee or snack, and you don’t want to leave your phone on your bike, or shove it randomly against a sweaty body part. More pockets on more things, please.
The padding. These were my first pair of chammies, but they were not my last. I’ve since acquired a few pairs by Machines for Freedom and Pearl Izumi. These have the most padding out of all of them.
The waistband and leg cuffs. These are designed so the waist and leg bands don’t roll or ride up, but I find they still roll a bit. In the photo above, I’m just standing there, and you can see the leg bands riding up. Maybe I’m just a really roll-y person.
What I Didn’t Like
The price. At $115, these are not cheap. I know that Wild Rye uses premium materials, and you’re supporting a certified B-corp, certified climate neutral, woman-owned company that puts their money where their mouth is, but the price point doesn’t hurt any less. That being said, there are various sales throughout the year so you can get around 25-30% off if you’re patient.
I’m a fan, I’m a fan, I’m a fan! I always find myself reaching for the Eleanor Chammy first before I reach for the other pairs that I have. I figured I should have a second pair. I love them so much that I just ordered another pair during the birthday sale with 30% off (the only way I can reasonably afford these). I’m a little bummed that this pattern, Chonky Floral Jade, is no longer in stock in my size, but Deco Birds and flamingos aren’t half bad either. I’m excited to hit the trails in these.
The Wild Rye Eleanor Chammy is picture above with the Wild Rye Holly Jersey.
Last updated on August 27, 2023.