The 2FO Cliplite is very stiff on the first couple of rides so be aware that they do have a break-in period. I developed a few hot spots around my ankle on the first ride but those quickly went away by the fourth time out. With the amount of adjustability in the BOA closure system, the shoes now feel custom molded to my feet.
Fit may be an issue for some customers so we’d suggest trying them on before hand. I have a very narrow foot and these shoes fit tight. I would imagine anyone with a wide mid-foot would have a longer break-in period or not get along with them very well. Most all Specialized dealers are well stocked with Body Geometry sizing tools or should have the shoes in stock.
For a relatively light weight trail shoe, the 2FO Cliplite shoes offer some decent protection. The toebox has a large TPU guard on the leading edge that wraps way up the front of the shoe. I struck rocks several times with my toe with no adverse effects and the shoes still look new. I have gained a few scars on my ankles from the lack of protection there, but that would impede pedaling performance greatly.
A highlight of the 2FO Cliplite shoes would have to be the pedaling performance. It is outstanding. The shoes are relatively light for the level of protection and the sole is nearly as stiff as some of the carbon XC offerings out there right now. I really liked the recessed Landing Strip cleat system. When putting a foot back on the pedal unclipped, the shoes grip quite well and will let you get through awkward corners or rock gardens without fear. Plus when you’re off the bike walking around, you don’t sound like a tap dancer.
To my surprise, the shoes run on the warm side. The small panels on the toe, tongue, and ankle have breathable fabric, which did work alright however I would have liked a bit more airflow. While they did stay warm, I never felt that I was sweating profusely or had wet socks and the trade off for the extra warmth is that they’re a bit more resistant to water and moisture coming in.
The Wolf’s Last Word
The Specialized 2FO Cliplite is about as good as it gets for a trail specific clipless shoe that can pull double duty on a park day. They have an ideal balance of armor, stiffness, and walking comfort that makes them the go to option for my everyday shoe. The soles offer loads of traction on hybrid pedals like the Mallet E and aren’t a pain to walk in. After the initial break in period they are like slippers and the BOA adjustment puts them over the top.
Weight: 391g each (w/ Crankbrothers brass cleats)