Step Up to Performance: MTB Kicks We Love
We write about bikes a lot here on the Bicycle Blue Book blog – we write about ways to make your bike go faster, we write about ways to make your bike more comfortable, we write about which bike to buy and when, we write about used bikes vs. new bikes and one bike’s used value vs. another’s. If we have learned anything over our collective decades of riding experience, it is none of it matters if your feet hurt. To that end, we humbly offer four of our favorite shoes for the mountain biker. Cross country racer or big gap hucker, we’ve got you covered!
The SCOTT MTB Premium offers a dual-zone BOA L5 lacing system that delivers comfort and adjustability. SCOTT mounted the upper BOA closure at the top of the shoe with a mid-foot reel to allow a 2:1 pull across the forefoot. The asymmetrically conforming upper, made of microfiber mesh, is perforated and breathable. The Ergologic insole features Poron shock dampening, adjustable arch support and a removable metatarsal button. The carbon sole has a stiffness index of 9.
Price: $300 More: scott-sports.com
What the Shimano XC60s lack in name, they make up for with excellent features and a quality build. Constructed of synthetic leather to provide protection and durability, the XC60 delivers competition-level performance at a reasonable price point. The shoe closure system features an oversized micro-adjust buckle and dual offset straps for a secure fit. The uppers are then mated to a carbon fiber reinforced polyamide sole with polyurethane lugged outsole that includes spike mounts.
Price: $220 More: shimano.com
The Maltese Falcon has become a favorite shoe for enduro riders, with a medium-stiff shank for direct pedaling power but with a bit of give for comfort. For a secure fit and extra support, Five Ten added a Velcro ankle strap. An external heel counter boosts stability for technical maneuvers and long rides. The Maltese Falcon is compatible with most clipless pedals and features a tacky rubber sole for extra traction when unclipped.
Price: $160 More: fiveten.com
Providing much of the performance of their high-end racing shoes at a fraction of the price is the SIDI Duran. Handcrafted in Europe, the Duran features a 3-strap upper designed around SIDI’s last/foot form that allows independent adjustment at the forefoot, metatarsal area and instep, for a secure fit. For stiffness, the Duran comes equipped with a nylon sole and external heel cup for increased support and reduced heel slip.
Price: $180 More: ciclista-america.com