Posted by Miles Arbour
Although I’m not completely sure how long the Specialized Rime shoes have been around, I do remember finding a used pair as my first bikepacking shoe, which happened to appear in my Year (of gear) in Review article back in 2016. Without diving too deep into that, I liked my older (2013-2014) Rime Experts. They were breatheable, dried out overnight, and served me very well.
Specialized has come out with some updated models since then, but the latest Rime 1.0 and 2.0 shoes look like they are ready to handle the demands of bikepacking. Both models are designed around an outer mesh construction, which Specialized refers to as X-PEL, designed to reduce water absorption and increase drying time. Both use a two-bolt standard mountain bike cleat pattern and have a relaxed fit for on- and off-bike comfort. Check out the details on both below.
Specialized Rime 2.0
The Rime 2.0 is the higher-end option of the two, adding in an aggressive Vibram sole and BOA L6 strap, paired with standard laces for on-the-fly adjustments. Instead of adding a waterproof membrane, like we’ve seen on several newly released shoes; including the Fizik Terra Clima X2s I’m currently reviewing, Specialized uses a mesh construction that is claimed to “prevent the shoe from becoming water-logged in creek crossings and will dry overnight.” The Rime uses a 3/4 length nylon composite shank, allowing for proper pedalling efficiency as well as off-the-bike comfort. The Rime 2.0 is also quite lightweight, with a weight of 384g per shoe (size 42), and is priced at $160 USD. If they are as durable and breathable as Specialized has claimed, the new Rime 2.0 looks like a definite contender for those on the hunt for a clipless bikepacking shoe. The Rime 2.0 is only available in black, in sizes EU 36 to 49.
Specialized Rime 1.0
The Rime 1.0 is the more affordable option, but still offers many of the same features and characteristics as the Rime 2.0. You still get the mesh X-PEL water management system, the nylon composite shank, and a relaxed fit that should be great for hike-a-bikes. What gives? The Rime 1.0 uses a simplified hook and loop strap instead of the BOA closure, and the Vibram sole is replaced with Specialized’s in-house rubber. The overall weight is said to be the same as the 2.0, but the price is significantly more affordable at $110 USD, potentially making it a great option for someone wanting to give clipless bikepacking a try. The Rime 1.0 is available in black, aqua, and red in sizes EU 36 to 49.
For more details on the new Specialized Rime shoes, head over to Specialized.com.