XC Mtn Biking and Gravel shoe

Looking to have one pair of shoes I can use for Mtn Biking and Gravel. Is that possible? I have a Canyon Lux XC mtn bike and a Cervelo Aspero Gravel bike. This shoe would be used in events like Crusher in the Tusher, Leadville, White Rim TT’s, P2P, Belgian Waffle, etc.

Absolutely…I have always used my MTB shoes for gravel. Never an issue.


What shoes/pedals do you use currently?

I’d think any mtb shoes will do. Just pick some that fit you!

MTB for gravel is simple and super common. Existing thread with suggestions;

It depends on how much protection you want on the mountain side. On the xc-cx-gravel-road side, you can use an XC or gravel shoe for road no compromise.

I use the Shimano lightweight MTB XC9 and the gravel RX8 that I’ve used for road and gravel. The RX8s are easier to talk in but less stable walking on rocky sides because the lugs are more central. The XC9 "walk’ by letting your heel move. If you’re looking at rock / log strikes on the MTB side, i’d get a heartier shoe. For use as a road/groad/xc shoe, I’d use the RX8 all the way up to you’re a paid pro road rider -there’s no benefit to a proper road shoe over a top end MTB shoe/cleat (maybe aero if speedplay). If you’re running up a muddy hill or standing on rocky hills, the XC9. If you’re hitting rocks on the side of the trail, a proper mtb shoe or flats.

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I prefer flats on my mountain bikes for the bailout factor. Having said that, I have two pairs of MTB Shimano SPDs that I clip on XTR pedals for gravel and road riding. I’ve never bought into road shoes, just don’t see the benefit. MTB shoes are comfy and practical on and off the bike. Use them for road, gravel, mountain, cyclocross - all good!

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I stick with Sidi MTB shoes on road and gravel so that i can walk off the bike. Many in road shoes seem to slip and slide like Bambi on ice. I’ve seen a few commuters in road shoes come a cropper and I think the only disadvantage is when all out sprinting on a road bike but you can akways adjust the tension in most MTB pedals.


Glad to see that I’m not the only person who uses double-sided pedals on “MTB” shoes even when on the road.

I recently picked up a pair of FI’ZI:K X1 Infinito shoes and fit is amazing. It’s basically as stiff as their road shoe. It’s basically their road shoe with a gravel / MTB sole. Been loving them.

I’m surprised a company hasn’t created a gravel specific shoe like they have for every other part of gravel riding :man_facepalming:

  • Ye of little faith…

Alot of those look suspiciously close to my MTB shoes. Its almost like they’re the same thing. :sweat_smile:

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Yup, some are pure MTB, while others have made some deliberate design changes with gravel in mind. I just grabbed a couple quick links that include some dedicated models, while also including others that aren’t.

Just a quick grab to counter the “why isn’t anybody capitalizing on gravel shoes…” comment. If history is a guide, we will see this category grow like all other aspects of the gravel equipment scene… even if many of the initial offerings are nothing more than recolored stop-gap options made from other products.

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Exactly…you are seeing it in clothing too with “gravel-specific” shorts…i.e. regular shorts with leg pockets (which has been done in tri shorts for years).

I have yet to come across the need for a single-piece of “gravel-specific” kit…what serves me well on the road or MTB tends to work just as well on gravel. So gimme my road kit, pair it with my MTB shoes / pedals and I am good to go.


Can I report this as spam @mcneese.chad :rofl: It’s the exact reason I don’t follow the gravel trend, it’s just the manufactures sucking people in and everyone is falling for it :frowning:

I agree with @Power13 :100: People would save themselves a lot of money if they could see through it.


The Shimano XC9 is way too stiff for my feet. They are good for a 1.5 hour XC race but anything over 3 hours and the ball of my feet get really sore. I use the same size Shimano XC5 without issue on 3+ hour long rides. The XC5 isn’t as stiff. Evidently my feet need more flex.

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I just took the Goldilocks approach and ordered a pair of the XC7 for my new gravel shoes. :sunglasses:

Arrived last night…Hopefully they end up being “just right”.


I’m waiting for gravel specific food bars and gels.

I have gravel shoes. They are lighter, so I can be a true Dirt Roadie.

That, in itself, is funny, because I use my MTB shoes for my road bike (which happens to be a CX frame) and flats on my actual MTB. I don’t think I do anything “right.” I will, however, use my gravel shoes, on my road bike now too. Weight is watts. Bam! that’s the #1 roadie excuse.

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I’ve been using Sidi Drako 2’s and Tiger’s on both XC and gravel bikes with XTR pedals. Did Leadville in these as well as many 100 mile plus gravel rides. Plenty stiff for efficiency, still easy to walk in, and I don’t get hot spots which can happen with some stiff soled shoes. I do replace the stock insoles with something with a higher arch. I really liked the Giro Supernatural X-static insoles but I think they stopped making them.

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Let us know how those XC7’s work out for you.

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Second this. SIDI Tigers with Giro Supernatural insoles so that you can adjust the arch.

I spoke to Giro support and they still make the insoles, but you have to order them through their support team - I contacted them through the website.