When I recently realized that my go-to shoes were no longer comfortable, I remembered Mavic’s Razor and those entry-level shoes’ comfort, durabilty, and wonderfully grippy Contagrip rubber. Within a week a call was made to Mavic and a pair of Chasms were winging their way West. As only the somewhat flexible sole kept the Razors from being big ride favorites, it made sense that the carbon sole’d Chasms. Given how well the Razors held up, it also seemed likely that Mavic’s second-best shoe would provide epic ride durability beyond that promised by their high end cross-country race shoe catalog description.
Alongside the Chasms I requested pair of Mavic’s updated Single Track gloves. A local shop owner had been raving about the stretchy perforated foam knuckle protection and wonderfully soft Pittards leather palm so I decided to give them a go. Nicely coordinated and on-trend in Winner’s White, both the gloves and shoes have been on almost every ride since their arrival. Hit the jump for the details and some early thoughts…
Slotting in nicely with both Mavic’s Notch enduro line and their technical Stratos trail kit, the Single Track is a glove designed for technical riding in warm and hot weather. The palms’ Pittards leather (the first real leather I’ve seen on gloves in ages) is remarkably soft and its natural breathability aided buy a handful of lazer-cut perforations. The Ergo Cut fit is pre-curved and runs at the large end of the labeled size: size down if unsure. The back and fingers are light without feeling fragile and the dense, perforated foam at the knucles and under the palm heel is stretchy and unobtrusive.
While Zach has run into fit issues with the Single Tracks, the larges work great for my mid-sized hands and long fingers. The extended cuff is warmer than some superlight gloves’ but adds a touch of support and has never been uncomfortable. While the white (and probably the available yellow) fabric does show dirt easily, it also encourages regular washing: no bad thing in my book. Of course, black is also available for those who prefer to avoid the Shanghai traffic cop look. The $50 price tag is on the steep side, but if they’re anything like me, most riders pulling the Mavics on one hand and a $40 pair on the other would have little problem spending the extra tenner. These gloves will be getting lots of use going forward- look for a review before fall.
Similarly, the Chasms fit well right out of the box. While it’s funny to call white shoes with yellow highlights understated, the Chasms are subdued by the standard set by today’s race models. With some supportive insoles in place, it was off to June’s 24 Hours in the Enchanted Forest for a whole lot of riding. Though a rain delay kept overall mileage down, I never once felt the need to change into anything else. The shoes’ deep heel cup felt great on the bike and the Energy Grip carbon outsole proved plenty stiff for singlespeed use. When trotting up a set of stairs to meet some riding buddies a week later, I realized that the Mavics’ Salomon-derived Contagrip rubber tread was letting walk without fear of a nasty slip and fall. It was a good feeling.
Though I was skeptical of the Ergo Straps’ Kevlar cables, the system is said to be lighter and stronger than typical Velcro straps while avoiding those straps tendency to ‘remember’ their last setting- and they seem to be just that. While a bit fiddly when pulling the shoes on, the lightweight Clima Vent tongue has yet to lead to any hot spots or other discomfort. At $240, one shouldn’t expect any compromises from the Chasms. So far? I haven’t found any.