Giro Ventana Shoes

Giro have a little bit of a habit of getting rid of rad products before their time. Does anyone remember the Xen? Possibly the greatest helmet of all time, well people were still happy buying it when Giro kicked it to the curb… While rad, the XAR was not a suitable replacement. That’s how I felt about the new Giro Ventana shoes. When I found out the Terraduro Mid had been discretely removed from Giro’s lineup I was a little upset. In this ex-magazine owner’s opinion, that shoe is the greatest all-mountain MTB shoe (SPD) of all time. I’ve owned a lot of shoes, and nothing could ever hold a candle to that shoe. Everything was right, the stiffness, the simple laces, the ankle support, the lace saver, the tread, and the fore-aft adjustment… everything was perfect.

Now they are gone, forever. Replaced with this shoe, a shoe that doesn’t at all resemble its predecessor and a shoe that i thought would pale in comparison to my Terraduro Mids.

Well, it turns out after riding in them for the last few months I’m going to have to eat my words. I mean I miss the ankle support provided by the Mids, and this shoe cannot make up for that, but the fit, stiffness, and walkability (important for a photographer) are all there. I’ve owned a few pairs of BOA MTB shoes, from Five Ten, Scott, and Specialized. The setup on these Ventana’s is by far the best, the other three all were a little over-complicated and bound up, not tightening down on my foot evenly. The Ventana’s BOA system, for some reason, even when covered in dried-up mud, tightens down evenly across my whole foot while the velcro closure on the toe ensures a custom fit upfront. I was worried that they would be a bit boxy and my toes would wallow around as they are a bit more spacious, but surprisingly that’s not the case with the fit being very close to my Terraduro’s.

The only real criticism I have is a minor one. The fore-aft adjustment is great, if you live to set your cleats way back on your shoes, these puppies offer plenty of adjustment. But it’s when it comes to sideways adjustment that I can’t get them as close to the cranks as I’d like. I’m yet to bust out a knife and shave a little rubber of the sole to fix them, one upside though is I don’t get any heel rub whatsoever now on my frame.

So after a few months riding I’d have to say I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the Giro Ventana, its futuristic looks belie a rugged, stiff (in all the right places) and versatile mtb shoe.


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