There is nothing more grippy than a new pair of 5.10 shoes on a pair of decent platform pedals. Sticky rubber shoes have been a game changer for many that had been looking at the switch back to platform pedals, but weren’t quite ready. 5.10 and their stealth rubber soles have led the charge in this revolution that they clearly have won- just take a good look at the feet of those standing in line in Whistler, or at the top of your local DH trails.
We’ve been running the Impact model for the last season or two for pretty much everything- from grueling XC rides, to racing the DH at Sea Otter, and at the Whistler bikepark, and they have yet to disappoint. Earlier this year they released the Karver shoe, which was created with all the of same features of the Impact, but with a mid-height ankle. Fitting in their line right in the middle of the low rise and high top Impact, it also comes in a more feminine version for women.
We picked up a pair of the women’s Karver shoes earlier this year at the Sea Otter Classic, and Inga hasn’t worn anything since on our rides.
I recently picked up my own pair of Karvers- unlike the women’s model (which is fetching in the purple, Inga loves hers) the men’s model comes in red, and features a lace cover attached by hook and loop straps. (AKA velcro to most of us) It solves an issue many of us have had with our Impacts, which is constantly having to tie and double knot one’s shoes.
For my initial ride with the new Karvers, I headed out to our local DH trails, and for going a shuttle day, did a solo pedal up mission. As expected, the five ten shoes gripped like crazy- in fact, new five ten shoes are almost too grippy- to move one’s foot around on the pedal, you have to lift your foot and replace it. A nice problem to have, easily remedied by removing some pins from your pedals, or switching to pedals with fewer, more low profile pins.
The lace covers are detachable on both sides, and fully removable. I’m hoping that this isn’t an issue on muddy days, but with a back up pair of Impact shoes, I’ll most likely save the Karvers for rides in more favorable conditions.
Like the rest of the products offered by 5.10, the shoes are a worthwhile investment in gear, and is a worthwhile addition to their offerings. My only issue? I don’t have a DH helmet with any red to make up a matching kit.