GIRO LATCH SHOE REVIEW
Review by Drew Rohde
Before riding in our new Giro Latch shoes, we’d been almost exclusively riding clipped in for the last year. We’ve ridden a couple new flat pedal shoes off and on in that period but have largely been unimpressed, until now. The Giro Latch shoe development was a collaboration between Giro’s team a group of rubber engineers and some key test riders. Giro’s goal was to create a highly elastic compound that blends grip with durability in a unique new Gamma tread design, while also making a shoe that’s comfortable, quick-drying and lasts. So far, we’ve been quite pleased with the Latch shoes and look forward to riding them more on days where we’re looking to practice some jumping skills or wanting to ride foot out, flat out.
Tack Rubber is Giro’s take on a tacky and durable compound. The Gamma tread design and compound work together to keep our feet in place without feeling like they’re glued in place. Repositioning our feet was relatively easy to do on the more yet once we were bouncing down the trail, our feet felt confidently in place.
We’re big fans of shoes that offer comfort and reduce foot fatigue, and Giro’s Latch shoes feature Mute Foam, which is their midsole foam that has a slow rebounding action. They claim it reduces the chatter and vibration felt by the rider.
Construction of the Giro Latch shoe is stout and uses a fast-drying microfiber upper with a RockPrint reinforced toe to help with abrasion and impact durability. Giro uses a 3D molded footbed with a Mute Foam 3D midsole and HD polyethylene power plate.
We picked up our Latch shoes from Giro’s booth at Sea Otter Classic and have been bashing on them ever since. The spaces between the lugs in the Gamma pattern are just large enough to let the pedal pins move slightly to you can easily adjust foot position while on the move. The lugs have enough height and work with the Tack rubber compound to prevent that float from being unnerving when the going gets rough. We rode a variety of trails from flowy jump lines to more chunky downhill trails and enjoyed the shoes’ performance all around. On jump trails the shoes offer nice grip but still enough freedom of movement to try and throw some style or manipulate the bike underneath you, yet the traction is there when you need it. If you’re regularly plowing chunderous and chunky terrain, you’ll appreciate the traction as well as the Mute Foam midsole. Whether it was a long day pedaling big miles or shuttling laps on downhill trails, the power plate shank and foam offer a solid base to keep the rider’s feet comfortable.
The Wolf’s Last Word
Available in four colors, the Giro Latch shoes are an awesome option for riders looking at a low-top, flat pedal shoe. While we’d love to see a high-top version available, the Latch shoes are still going to be getting a lot of use on days where we’re looking to have a bit more fun than our clipless shoes will allow. Winter slaloms, rut tracks, and jump trails are perfect places for clipped-in riders to experiment with flat pedals. If you’re already a flat pedal rider, and want a slim-fitting, minimalistic style shoe that packs a lot of comfort and tech where you need it, the Giro Latch is an easy recommendation from our team. We’re picky when it comes to shoes and these keep our paws happy, Loam Wolf Approved.
Disclosure: Our team selects all of the products we review and do so with honesty and objectivity in mind. Some of the products we receive come directly from Competitive Cyclist, who also value our readers and have offered them a 15% discount (exclusions apply) on their first purchase by using LOAMWOLF15. Through this program we may also receive a small commission at no cost to you. Thanks for your support, TLW.