Giro Hex Mountain Bike Helmet Review

There’s one piece of gear that every mountain biker has, but most of us rarely think about: a helmet. That is, we rarely think about it until we really need it.

The Giro Hex is a beefy lid intended for all-mountain, trail, and marathon applications. It features an in-mold EPS liner, polycarbonate shell, P.O.V. visor with 15 degrees of vertical adjustment, Roc Loc 5 fit system, and 21 vents.

According to Giro, the in-mold EPS liner allows them to create a lighter mountain bike helmet with better ventilation and more durability. The special moldability allows them to create their Wind Tunnel ventilation system, which scoops air in on top and around the front of the head and pushes it out the back of the helmet along with excess heat.

The Roc Loc 5 fit system provides easy one-handed tension adjustment as well as vertical adjustment, allowing the rider to easily adjust the fit on the go.

The Hex is available in numerous color combinations and designs (click here to check them out).

Photo credit, upper right: Sydnah Swails.

The Test

The first thing that struck me about the Hex was how rugged and no-nonsense this helmet looks. It may have something to do with the “matte brown lines” design, but the Hex just looks like it is durable and ready to protect your head, and it’s not going to be too finicky as it does it. I threw it on, adjusted the chin strap, tightened down the Roc Loc system, and I instantly felt as if I had been wearing this helmet for months. It has a natural, intuitive feel to it that takes no adjustment time.

Photo Credit: Sydnah Swails.

The 21 massive vents and Wind Tunnel ventilation system function as advertised: they will cool you down in a heart beat. In fact, during the late fall and early winter months that I have been using this helmet, the vents functioned almost too well: I had little excess heat, and I didn’t want to give it away! However, once things start really heating up in the spring, the massive scoops on top of the helmet will provide welcome relief while bombing down the mountain after sizzling climbs on the way to the summit.

The Roc Loc system worked great and it is almost as completely intuitive as the rest of the helmet. I still haven’t quite figured out what my favorite setting is in regards to vertical adjustment–probably because I’m not used to having a helmet that allows you to adjust that setting on the fly. However, the ease of adjustment allows you to play around with it even while rolling down the trail, allowing you to fine-tune to your heart’s desire!

Photo Credit: Sydnah Swails.

If I had to have a quibble with this helmet, it would be that the design and position of the vents makes it difficult to mount a head lamp or a helmet camera in the sweet spot. It’s difficult, but not impossible: with a little practice I was able to find the best vents to thread the straps through, and while I had to route them far down the sides of helmet, I had just enough strap on my mounts to successfully latch on to the helmet.

Bottom Line: The Giro Hex is an attractive looking lid that offers excellent protection, cooling, and adjustment in a no-nonsense package. MSRP is $90.

Many thanks to Giro for sending the Hex down for review!

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