backcountry giro empire limited edition electric blue mountain bike shoes

…and they’re back. Apparently Backcountry teased these a bit to early, but now they’re ready to roll. Er, pedal.

In conjunction with the Whiskey Off Road even in Prescott AZ, has unveiled their take on the Giro Empire MTB. Thanks to a partnership between the brands, Giro has produced a limited edition high performance XC shoe in Backcountry blue, of course. Utilizing the Empire’s lace up design, the shoe is fitted with an Easton EC90 carbon outsole with aggressive lugs to take the Empire from Taylor Phinney’s race winning road shoe to a high performance off roader.

Backcountry edition Empires will be a limited release that are sold only through and starting on June 1st. Pre-orders can be made now, retail’s $299.95 and sizes are 39-48 with half sizes also available. More pics of the kicks below…

backcountry giro empire limited edition electric blue mountain bike shoes

backcountry giro empire limited edition electric blue mountain bike shoes


  1. I still haven’t seen an appealing way to deal with the laces after you tie them. I think they look so good in all of the press shots but they neglect the knot.

  2. I hope people interested in biking don’t turn and run away thinking they have to buy all this kit, all these parts, all these insane bikes at all these prices that many of us can’t afford. If I told my wife I needed some MTB shoes and they were $300, she would tell me to go barefoot.


  4. I agree, these are beautiful shoes, but I feel that laces are a step WAAY backward. Fine on dress oxfords, or sneakers, but straps are so much better. They don’t get tangled up or soggy or untied, etc. Just not getting’ it, I guess.

  5. @Derek,

    They have a little loop on the middle of the tongue that the ends of the knot slips into. They never dangle over the sides. Most comfortable bike shoes I’ve ever worn.

  6. Derek,
    I agree that straps and buckles are a better solution, but FYI, they do supply a little elastic loop in the tongue to suck the excess lace through, so it isn’t flopping around. I could see that cutting it for road and more open MTB trails no problem, although it seems like once you have weeds/brush/branches whipping you in the feet, all bets would be off. Also, you have the issue of no provision for on bike adjustment, which I find myself frequently making use of, as it seems that most shoes stretch a bit upon getting warm/wet, regardless of the manufacturers claims of “zero stretch” materials.

  7. great looking shoes, but agree with everyone above. Laces belong nowhere on a cycling shoe. Your foot swells and contracts throughout rides and races. Having the ability to reach down and click a buckle or boa one tighter or looser i shuge. Try doing that with these lace ups.

  8. edition but no “Goat” logo? They’re missing out. Thats one of the coolest looking logos out there.

  9. I don’t understand why high end shoes use the wimpiest toe guards? Giro is notorious for paper thin toe guards…..why? Is it really a weight issue? Aesthetics wouldn’t be that different.


    Put in a boa system or velcro straps and now we are talking.

    This shoe is for crew who focus more on hipster form VS athletic function.

  11. I was skeptical of laces too. Until I ended up with a pair of Empires. Out of the dozen or so shoes I’ve owned these are the first that I don’t have to adjust on the bike. They are a bit fiddly to setup before you’re on the bike but it’s really not so bad. Five extra seconds for a forget-about-it fit.

    I know this is bikerumour though so carry on bashing and speculating on a product you’ve never used.

  12. Agree with Chris and others – I was a hater until I tried a pair at a teammate’s insistence. They take longer to put on for sure, and on long 3-4 hour rides I’ve yet to have to adjust them. Maybe it’s partly because it’s not indexed with a ratchet that’s too tight or too loose? The lace retainer keeps them completely out of the way, even on the track the laces don’t worry me.

    They also weigh less than any other shoe I’ve ever had, are more comfortable, and breathe better. Of course, if it’s anything less than 50, my feet will be cold instantly, where normally I’d have to be an hour + into a ride with my old shoes to start feeling the cold set in.

    My biggest complaint is the price. Yes, they are made incredibly well, the insole system included with them is very nice, but $300 is a lot for shoes, period. I got mine on sale for just over a hundred, and at that price point I feel like they were pretty great, but for $300, I’ll pass and keep riding my beat up MTB shoes.

    I think the straps/ratchets are on the way out. The fit from laces is still superior by it’s nature, but the boa system really seems to be the best of both worlds there when it’s wired in the right way.

  13. I think people are missing a big advantage here. Buckles and boas break all the time. Velcro doesn’t work too well once it gets muddy. Last year I had boas break the day before a big hillclimb and a mavic buckle snap in between cross races. Both were fixable (after the race) but the point is that I probably could’ve participated in those races if I had a more reliable closure system. I’m thinking Velcro or, ideally, laces.

    Also, I’ve yet to hear of a set of empires that stretches.

  14. I love my s-works shoes, but not only do Boa’s break fairly easily, they wear well before the rest of the shoe. Replacing them is expensive….if you can find a compatible replacement with your old model shoes.

    Lace-up bike shoes make sense to me. Velcro is for those who can’t tie a knot….

  15. Have had several friends literally become entrapped in Boa snowboard boots when the system broke. Laces are the way to go.

  16. @Crabonfever Have you tried getting replacement Boa’s from Boa’s website, I believe you can get two sets, for left and right shoes, for around 16 dollars.

What do you think?