We’ve discussed narrow tire adventure machines, big tire end of the world machines, what drivetrains are good for what, and what tires sizes are best for what conditions, but we haven’t discussed how you make contact with the bike. By this I mean Giro, and by Giro, I mean mostly their shoes. I’ve been impressed over the years by Giros products and their durability. This year Giro showed off their full line of shoes for everything from ultra light road race shoes to thick insulated shoes with clips for those chilly conditions, and everything in between. With a wide price range and so many different styles of shoes, they’ve got something for every type of rider.
For the more casual rider or tourer, there’s the Giro urban line of shoes, which look enough like regular shoes that you can comfortably walk in and some that even come in a reflective material. Giro’s line of stealthy street shoes that have mounts for clips hidden below are pretty nice when you don’t want to walk around looking like you just got off a bike. I can see these being appealing to the touring crowd. These shoe options let you clip in and ride with a stiff sole but are also comfortable to walk or hike in.
The mountain lineup of Giro shoes is impressive. They’ve got mountain shoes for everything from summer racing to near arctic conditions. Giro has partnered with Vibram to bring super grippy rubber souls to their mountain shoes. These are much better than the slick hard plastic sole from the days of yore. What I consider the workhorse of the line, The Privateer, has been upgraded from a hard plastic tread to a rubber tread. My personal pair is starting to show signs of wear after over 15,000 miles in them including the Tour Divide, and the Colorado Trail Race. They are still comfortable to walk in and hike in if need be. I’m curious how well the new rubber tread will hold up on trails like the Colorado Trail.
The women’s line of shoes are comparable to the men’s, however slightly fewer options. The ladies have definitely scored with the colors though. The women’s new Empire VR90 mountain shoes with laces and Vibram tread look like some pretty sweet shoes.
I was pretty excited by the D’Wool line of soon to be released gloves featuring a wool backside and suede interior. They felt very comfortable and breathable and I really want a pair when they come out. The gloves are very clean, simple, and look good in town or out protecting your knuckles from aggressive trailside bushes.
Giro continues to put out quality products and constantly improve upon them. I don’t mean to sound like a fanboy but I just might be. I’ve owned their helmets, gloves, shoes, and shorts, and I’ve yet to be disappointed.