Words: Mike Blewitt   Photos: Lachlan Ryan

If you’re moving faster than you can run, you should probably have a helmet on. I was told this some time in my youth, and I think it’s a pretty good idea. Generally, we all accept that wearing a helmet makes sense, seeing as it’s been law for almost three decades now.

But just because you have a helmet on your head, it doesn’t mean you’re safe. Helmets need to be the right size, fitted correctly, and offer the appropriate coverage. The Giro Chronicle is one of many newer trail helmets that offers more coverage than your standard XC lid, but also adds the MIPS system for added protection. In a nutshell (no pun intended) MIPS aims to reduce the rotational force in a crash where your head hits the ground, reducing the total impact and hopefully making sure you get up again to talk about it.

The Chronicle fits my head well, as do most Giro helmets. There’s some extra coverage at the back, and the super snug Roc-Loc 5 retention system helps you get the fit just right, along with the helmet coming in 5 different sizes. You can set the Roc Loc higher or lower, and dial it up even with gloves on. It’s so easy to use and super secure. You can also replace it if you break it – which can happen in time if you have a ponytail or plait to put through.

At a glance the Chronicle looks a bit warm as there is more helmet than vent – unlike some others. But the long P.O.V. (it means adjustable) visor and vents make air flow pretty good. And the Coolmax pads were comfortable on my forehead – and thankfully Giro make it easy to get replacements, so it’s worth updating these after a summer. The vents and internal channels work really well when you’re moving to keep your head from not cooking.

Giro state that the Chronicle MIPS is a helmet for rides where you have “technical descents and challenging climbs” which sounds like exactly what I like to do. It’s a goggle friendly design, if you’re into open-face helmets and goggles. I’m not, and resorted to putting my sunglass arms under the helmet straps as they sit out a bit further.

On the scales the Chronicle MIPS is about 100g heavier than some XC/trail lids, which for reference is more than the weight of adding a light unit onto your head for a night ride. But the extra weight wasn’t noticed, nor the fewer vents than my regular lid. The helmet just worked, and stayed in place exceptionally well.

I bought my first Giro helmet in 1997 and since then they have almost always won on fit alone, and the Chronicle MIPS is no different. This unit has better coverage, better protection, and better style than the Exodus I bought in ’97, and if you’re looking for a trail lid that looks good, fits well, and nails all the safety tests – this should be one you check out. Coming in five sizes and lots of colours, without even looking at the price the Giro Chronicle MIPS is a great proposition. When you consider it is $149, has MIPS, is comfortable, well-vented, stylish and should fit a wide variety of people – then you really can’t look past this helmet next time you’re in the market for a new trail lid.

HITS MISSES
Exceptional value Maybe they don't have a colour you like?
Great fit and ventilation  
Replaceable parts  
RRP $149
FROM sheppardcycles.com.au