Over the years I have collected a closet full of biking gear for every occasion and it seems my use of the term “favorite biking shorts” refers to a different pair every few months. As fabric technology improves, there is always a cutting edge brand around the corner. This time it is Elevenpine who has come up with a new design to help you reduce the closet space occupied by bike gear through a unique design, effectively creating two types of shorts in one efficient package.
With the Crankitup Shorts, Elevenpine has developed a rugged set of mountain bike shorts that flip from relaxed to attack with a simple zip along the thigh. Both fits are great for riding around the trails. The relax fit, also known as “beer mode”, is perfect for a casual feel when the trail temperature increases or, as its nick name infers, letting loose at the pub after your ride is complete. The attack fit, or “ride mode”, is great for providing a tighter athletic feel with no loose ends to catch when on a narrow trail. The conversion from casual to form fitting takes a simple zip from hip to knee and a Velcro strap to tighten down the fabric at the bottom of the leg.
I preferred to use the form fitting “ride mode” when on the trail for a confident and compressed feel. The waist band is looser, providing for increased mobility at the hips. The pockets are perfect for a trail ride and reduce the need for a backpack if you are looking to lighten your load during a ride. The left pocket has a zipper to stow away anything you need to keep safe, such as a mobile phone or set of keys. The right pocket is a looser, cavernous alternative. This pocket was better for keeping snacks I needed to access quickly and its depth was just right for keeping anything stored in it from coming loose.
Elevenpine has also developed a more casual alternative in the Uprising Shorts. It has a similar design but the material is less rugged, so I prefer to use them on the road or more low key trails. The pockets are both sealed by zippers in this version and provide a snug fit for anything you are packing.
My favorite feature of the Uprising Shorts is how they pack up very compact and save precious luggage space, making them the perfect choice for my recent trip to Iceland. My extra space was strictly limited, but they fit in almost as an after thought. This is in no way a compromise, as they killed it on a 16-mile ride from Thingvellir National Park to Laugarvatn, where our hostel was located. My butt has never been so comfortable on a long ride and combined with the Liberator Liner compression shorts, another amazing 11P product, saddle sores were far from my mind throughout my entire trip. The last and most fun feature is they are damn photogenic.
In both the Crankitup and Uprising shorts Elevenpine has developed a fantastic alternative to spandex. The design is truly innovative and they will absolutely change the industry for mountain bike shorts with this development. I often find myself wearing them off of the trail as a casual pair of shorts around the house or out socializing, which is almost impossible to do in spandex without putting someone off. They are a great party trick to show off too!
Liberator Liner are the most comfortable saddle pad I have used and are a must to combine with either pair of shorts. For the sake of your eyes I have deciding against modeling those bad boys, but check out the Elevenpine website to view those and the rest of the Men's and Women's bike shorts they are currently featuring. Once you get your pair, don't forget, better keep those shorts in “beer mode” when the ride is over. Cheers to Elevenpine for a fantastic short design.