Over the last few months I’ve ridden my Giro Riddance Mids on all day epics, e-bike rides and long days in the bike park testing DH bikes. I’ve even ridden them on days when it was snowing out, with puddles all over the trails. While the ventilation left my toes a bit chilled, the water resistant treatment worked as advertised! The shoes were dry and ready to use the next day.
Highlights of the shoe include great traction on the pedals and while walking, a comfortable fit and soft, easy to pull laces. The tread pattern works very well and my shoes stayed put no matter the bike or terrain I was on. I also appreciated the damping properties of the shoes, as my feet didn’t feel quite as fatigued during long days in the park.
While there are plenty of things I do like about the Riddance Mids, one large issue I have with them is the stiffness of the soles– specifically when it comes to lateral movement. Other rider’s may love a stiff shoe, however I found the shoes to be too stiff when I was trying to use my feet to press on the pedals to lean the bike over into corners, or make micro-adjustments mid-turn. Some shoes will flex and conform in those situations. However, with the Riddance shoes I could feel the inside of the shoe lifting off the pedal as I weighted the outside of my foot to dip the bike into a corner.
Likewise, when it was time to put in a dig day or hike back up the trail to session favorite hits, the shoe wouldn’t mold or flex with off-camber terrain. Walk up a hill with a perpendicular root or rock and your entire ankle will shift rather than just the sole of your foot.
Is this enough of an issue to be a deal breaker? To me, no, but it is something I will take into account when selecting my shoes for the day. The stiffness was extremely welcome on e-bike rides. The extra weight of the bike and tendency to smack my toes while pedaling through big rock gardens means these shoes cater perfectly to this discipline. I also liked the stiffness on jumpy days or big hit DH laps. However, if I was digging on steep, off-camber hillsides, riding tight trails with lots of berms or sharp corners where foot placement and pedal sensitivity are required, I’d choose something else.
I like the Riddance Mids a lot, but I think the sole stiffness, especially in side to side movements, is a little bit of a concern for me. I was hoping they would soften up a bit, but I haven’t quite noticed much of a change yet. The good news is, I also haven’t noticed any other deterioration yet. That can’t be said of my favorite FiveTen Freerider Highs, which wear out after just a few months of riding.
Beyond impressive durability and strength, Giro’s Riddance shoes pack an impressive amount of grip thanks to the Vibram ISR rubber outsole. I also enjoyed how comfortable the shoes are. Whether it was a long day in the park or back to back days pedaling big miles, the shoes breathe well, don’t create any hot spots and wrap my feet in a very comforting way. Beyond my qualm of the sole’s lateral stiffness, I have a hard time finding anything I don’t like about the Giro Riddance Mids.
Price: $140; Website: giro.com
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