Light and Motion Urban 800
Commuter and trail lights have more or less converged, with the top end commuter lights like the Light and Motion Urban 800 well surpassing the mountain bike light output of just a few years ago, and providing more than enough light to navigate the darkest streets and singletrack. The 800 lumen peak output is impressively bright given the small 120 g total package, with high/medium/low settings yielding 800/350/175 lumen outputs and 1.5/3/6 hr runtimes respectively. The Light and Motion Urban line of lights all share the same body design and excellent mounting system—even after years of use, my older Urban series lights hold strong and I’ve yet to break a strap. The latest models such as this Urban 800 are now fully waterproof, never to short or succumb to endless rainy commutes. The Urban 800 charges in about 6 hours via micro-USB.
Through in-town commutes, backwoods adventure and singletrack mountain bike rides the Urban 800 has proven enough light for most any sort of riding. Light enough for helmet use with the included hook-and-loop mount, sturdy enough for everyday commutes. The Light and Motion Urban form factor is one of my favorites, easily stashed in a pocket and robust, but I wish the battery indictor was on top and visible when riding with it mounted on the bar, a minor gripe for an otherwise great light. The Light and Motion Urban 800 is built in California and retails for $150, with similar $130 Urban 650, $100 Urban 500, and $70 Urban 350 models available. www.lightandmotion.com
Upright Cyclist Riding Denim
You could say that denim was the original technical fabric, and while it’s seldom seen in the athletic apparel world anymore, it’s still a pretty good choice for people who spend time in the saddle.
Upright Cyclist’s 12.5 oz Riding Denim are 100% American-made. Sewn in Los Angeles from Cone Denim woven in North Carolina, these classically styled jeans have a few bike-specific touches that set them apart from the pack. Most notably, they have a reflective stripe integrated into the inside of the lower leg. When cuffed, the reflective panel can be seen. Every time I would wear these to work, a handful of people would stop me and ask about my pants. They would usually also comment that they’re good-looking jeans.
They also feature a high rear waist to avoid that plumber’s crack look. All of the sizes come pre-hemmed for a 34” inseam. Although they’re tapered to the cuff, cutting and hemming them all the way down to a 30” inseam did not seem to have an adverse effect on the fit.
Speaking of fit, I have to say this might be the first pair of casual cycling pants that I’ve had that really seem to fit. Most are too tight, obviously designed with hipsters in mind, and a few are just too roomy, which doesn’t really work well on the bike. $119 might be a little more than you paid for your last pair of pants, but quality and American craftsmanship don’t come cheap. www.uprightcyclist.com