A lot of gear comes across our desks here at Pinkbike. Check Out is a monthly round-up of everything our tech editors have gotten their hands on. Sometimes it's products we're doing long-term tests on, other times it's stuff we're stoked on but don't have time to fully review. And, sometimes it's crazy shit someone sent us unsolicited and we're having a laugh.
Etnies Jameson Mid Crank Shoe
• Asymmetric cuff • Geo-Hex tread pattern • Designed with input from Brandon Semenuk
Props to Brandon Semenuk for getting his own signature shoe, although I find it kind of strange that it's called the Jameson. There's also the fact that it has a suede exterior, which isn't the ideal fabric choice for muddy conditions. They are comfy, though, and while they're not the best option for long pedaly rides or DH laps, they'll work for the occasional dirt jump or pumptrack session.—Mike Kazimer
It's been a relatively mild winter so far, but if the snowpocalypse does arrive I'm ready. The OMW gloves are a 2-in-1 system - the inner glove is warm enough to wear on its own, but when the temperature really plummets it's time to pull on the overmitt. There's also a handwarmer pocket on the back of the inner glove for when things get really frigid. At that point I'd rather be on skis, but for the dedicated snow bikers out there the OMW gloves should help make sure you can still feel your fingers at the end of every ride.— Mike Kazimer
Ride Concepts Women's Hellion Shoe
• DST 6.0 HIGH GRIP Rubber Outsole • D3O High Impact Zone Insole Technology • Two-panel synthetic upper with anti-peel coating and perforated ventilation • Anti-abrasion toe and heel protection • EVA midsole provides support and shock absorption • Fully gusseted tongue prohibits intake of dirt and debris
• Women's-specific fit • Modern lifestyle Performance Fit • Approximate weight - 12.8 oz (361 g) • Sizes: 5-10 • Colors: Deep Purple or Charcoal • Price: $130 USD • www.rideconcepts.com
Ride Concepts is a newcomer on the block, and it's great to see that they went full in on their women's line. The Hellions have ample protection for your toes and the impact-absorbing soles are an interesting concept. The shoes are on the stiff side, but the fit is super comfortable.—Sarah Moore
Wahoo Kickr Core Trainer
The trainer is easy to set up and pair to your phone or laptop.
There's nothing in the virtual world of virtual sports that will have you cranking out laps quicker than being on the side of the road while hundreds of go-getters you don't know pass you by.
• Power and controlled resistance • Compatible with training apps • $900 USD
I took about a ten year hiatus from riding the trainer because almost anything was more enjoyable. In that time a lot has changed. Wahoo's Kickr Core trainer isn't an inexpensive product by any means but it makes riding through lousy weather and actually doing structured workouts exponentially more bearable. The Kickr Core works with road bikes and mountain bikes - bearing in mind you'll need to throw on a Shimano style cassette that's compatible. I've been using the trainer off and on for a couple of months now and it's completely changed how I feel about indoor virtual reality cycle sports (yes, it's a thing). I've paired it with the ever-so-popular Zwift app and have been able to test my lack of fitness against others around the globe. You can just get on and ride or, with the app, do structured workouts and even race live. Sure, it's pretty nerdy and if the option is at all there to be outside on trails, you know where I'll be. However, if you find yourself losing fitness throughout the winter and are unwilling to resort to crossfit or spin classes, I've found the smart trainer paired with Zwift could be a really good option. Plus, it's kind of fun.—Daniel Sapp