I am not a sponsored rider. I go fast when I can, I go slow when I want too.
As the proverbial ‘middle aged man’ I have a day job, riding is something I do for fun & for the challenge. Recently I got my hands on the Bontrager Rhythm and Lithos Mountain Bike Shorts from which I have just returned from a test ride.
Full disclosure, I am an XC rider with Enduro leanings. So initially I was drawn to the Rhythm ($109.99 CDN MSRP) first which presents with XC roots. Light and seemingly durable nylon ride with plenty of stretch and pockets. Lots of freedom of movement on trail and I particularly liked the integrated and easily adjustable waist band which certainly kept the short in place on the longer climbs. Bontrager also added belt loops but I think that is overkill on this light weight short. The 36” inseam presents a casual fit making for a comfortable aprez scene as XC riders don’t really like hanging out in their grape smugglers! Lazer cut ‘breather holes’ on the the front thigh are stylish and practical. One thing I did not like was the “swish, swish” sound of the nylon when pedaling but of course this did not compromise performance and I basically forgot about that mid-ride.
Luckily home is trailside and I stopped for a quick swap out for the Lithos ($134.99 CDN MSRP). More Enduro oriented with a loose fit, the Lithos are a stretch/woven polyester with 8% spandex fabric that do not make the “swish, swish” sound! Similar integrated easily adjustable waist band as the Rhythm which offered no ass sag. This I liked! Belt loops seem more appropriate on this short. The short features two zipped hand pockets and one zipped thigh pocket where I noticed my ‘intelligent device’ did not bounce around. This I liked. The 38” inseam was a little long for my taste as the short felt a little like a ‘Shpant.’ Maybe that was due more to my short inseam but there is no question they will accommodate any knee pad configuration.
We are accustomed to Bontrager’s quality as they continue to knock out quality product. I give both of these shorts a 4 star rating.
Bontrager Rhythm Shorts $135-$149 usd
Bontrager Lithos Shorts $164 usd