I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – if you ride a lot in the winter (or want to), a good pair of winter cycling boots may be one of the best purchases you ever make. Cold, wet feet can turn any great ride south in a hurry and even worse can potentially lead to frost bite. For everyone that wants to keep their toes, fortunately there has been a resurgence of winter boots lately, possibly due to the rise in popularity of fatbikes. Whatever the reason, more options is almost always a good thing which is why we are excited to check out the new MX 145 from Lake. While the Lake MXZ might be the gold standard in Winter boots, the MX and CX 145s could be considered more of a mid weight boot that offers a high level of water resistance and warmth compared to your typical Summer weight shoe.
Clip in and stay dry after the jump.
To gain their weather worthiness, the MX 145s are constructed with a waxed canvas, and leather upper that has a built in waterproof membrane to keep out most of the moisture. We’ll be testing these in a variety of winter conditions including full on snow, but we have a suspicion that they will work best in cold, wet, and rainy envirornments. If you’re looking for a highly insulated boot, you’re probably better off with the MXZ303.
Equipped with a dual Boa closure system, the boot is broken up into two quadrants with each Boa dial controlling one of those. There is quite a bit of overlap of the tongue, but there is a split down to the lower Boa enclosure meaning if you step in water up to your ankles, it probably won’t keep it out for long. At the top of the shoe you’ll find a neoprene cuff to keep out the elements and keep in the warmth, and a generous pull tab to help slide them onto your feet.
The main difference between the MX and the CX is that the MX uses a HyperGrip Ice Lock SPD treaded outsole, and the CX uses a three hold compatible fiberglass-injected nylon road outsole. HyperGrip Ice Lock tread actually uses micro glass pieces that are electrostatically aligned in the rubber to create a surface that grips incredibly well on ice. Due to the orientation of the micro glass, as the rubber wears, the glass will still be exposed meaning the traction will supposedly last the lifetime of the boot. In the case of the MX 145, the Ice Lock is confined to the small diamonds placed around the outsole. There are also provisions for toe spikes, that are staggered out a bit more than your typical shoe.
Each shoe ships with a warning label over the cleat mount stating that if you are using Crank Brothers’ pedals, you must use the shim or shoe shield provided with the pedals, or you will void the warranty of the boot. The cleat nut itself is captured in the sole, with the backside sealed against the inside of the boot to preserve the waterproofing and keep out cold air.
Cold is Winter, and Winter is dark, so to help keep you alive the boots feature large reflective panels on the rear. Every bit counts.
Inside the MX 145, you’ll find some technically advanced insoles that do more than just keep your foot comfy. One side of the insole features a heat reflective material woven into the fabric to keep your heat in and the cold out. The other side features a waffle pattern that uses the pockets of air as additional insulation against the cold.
No one really expects winter boots to be super light, but the MX 145s aren’t bad. At 509g per boot, you’re looking at just over 1kg per pair.
As for sizing, if you’re planning on wearing heavy winter socks you may want to size up a half size. I went with the same size that I wear in Lake’s CX 331, which fits but it’s on the snug side with regular cycling socks. Standard wool socks are ok, but the boots are definitely too tight to wear something like the Blaze from DeFeet.
MX 145s retail for $259.99 and are available in the US through Stage Race Distribution.