We understand the desire to push further beyond the beaten path, and dive into trails that offer chunky rock gardens, river crosses, and the odd hike up near-vertical root lattices. We also understand that just because we signed up for this life of adventure doesn't mean we don't like clipping in for the miles when we are on the bike. Fortunately it seems as though designers at Pearl Izumi are on the same page with the X-Alp Launch SPD Mountain Bike Shoe. These shoes wrap you up with a bonded, seamless upper to keep your foot hugged into place, so you can book it up the trail, on bike or on foot, for next level exploration. The X-Alp Launch SPDs combine the best of both worlds, with a stiff enough sole, thanks to a nylon composite shank, and serious grip that locks into the trail when you're off the bike. Its built with an EVA midsole that cushions blows from sharp rocks, and a Vibram Megagrip outsole that holds true to the dirt under foot. The lugs are designed with open an chevron shaped pattern, directionally placed to give you braking power in the heel, and propelling power in the toe while maintaining surefooted grip. Even the pedal zone features Vibram Megagrip with siping to keep mud away, so engaging is quick and snappy when you clip in.