Anyone following the Velospeak Instagram knows I’ve been riding a lot of dirt as of late. It’s been years since I purchased any mountain bike shoes, and the last pair still in use is at least 15 years old. Not the ideal shoe to wear any longer, so when the opportunity to ride the Shimano SH-XC90 arose, I jumped at the chance. Strangely, I’d never ridden Shimano shoes despite their stellar reputation. The SH-XC90 is their top of the line mountain bike shoe, and is available in sizes 36 – 48 with the added benefit of a wide option on the 38 – 48 sizes. I am one of those folks who needs a wide shoe, so when a company offers that option, I take it. The shoe is well crafted, and the design simple, but quite functional. There are two velcro straps, and one buckle closure. This might feel a bit old school compared to the plethora of shoes using the BOA system, but when riding dirt, the security of a rock solid system such as this can’t be beat. The adjustment is easy, and the comfort achieved perfect. Another feature that impressed me is the ability to increase the arch via a system of shims that slide into the insole. It is a rather clever set-up, and allows for incredible flexibility in adjusting how the shoe fits. I’ve been riding with the SH-XC90 for many months now, and the fit, finish, and overall good design have won me over. It’s too bad I am only now discovering the high quality of Shimano shoes.