Riders who use clipless pedals are blessed with a seemingly endless array of compatible footwear. If, however, you prefer flat pedals, your choices all seem to fall into the skate-inspired bucket. Sure, there are urban and mountain variants, but the pickings are slim compared to the clipless side of the fence. Thanks to footwear giant adidas, though, flat-pedal riders now have another choice with the company’s Terrex Trail Cross SL hybrid shoe ($130 MSRP).
Designed for mixed conditions, Clement’s 700×35 X’Plor USH is ready for almost any adventure. Featuring a firm center ridge and diamond-shaped side knobs, the USH is ideal for dirt roads, touring, and urban use. And if you’re wondering what USH stands for, it’s the airport code of Ushuaia on the island of Tierra del Fuego, Argentina. Ushuaia just happens to be the southernmost city in the world.
If there is one bike accessory that absolutely defines the Goldilocks condition it’s the multi-tool. Too big and you don’t want to carry it. Too small and it doesn’t provide enough leverage. Finding a tool that balances size and functionality can be a real challenge. Crankbrothers hopes to snag that elusive just right ranking with the company’s new f-series of multi-tools.
Thanks to their sleek, folding design, Crankbrothers’ f-series tools fit easily in your backpack, pocket, or seat bag. All three f-series tools share the same basic design, but the f10+ and f15 feature magnetized outer shells designed to hold everything together and provide additional leverage. Prices range from $29.99 (f10) to $42.99 (f15), and all models come with a 5-year warranty. I spent the past several weeks testing the top-of-the-line f15 model at home and in the field.
Marin’s Four Corners bikes are equal parts responsible adult and youthful explorer. Whether you’re commuting during the week or exploring back roads on weekends, the Four Corner’s 4130 CrMo steel frame and fork features three bottle mounts, rack and fender eyelets, lowrider fork mounts, and clearance for 29″ x 2.0″ tires. With an MSRP of $1099, you’ll have money left over for a mid-ride corn dog.