Field Testing the Krios In Idaho’s Beautiful Backcountry
By Spencer Hill
There’s something special about motorcycle travel in the fall. Cool temperatures and fantastic color shows make for memorable rides that can sustain motorcycle souls through the cold winter months ahead. With this in mind I embarked on an 800-mile backcountry tour of Idaho where the scenery promised to be just as enthralling as the terrain. I took this opportunity to try out my brand new Krios for the first time as I would be riding with friends from Klim and departing from their Rigby, Idaho headquarters.
Usually when I get a helmet I like to ease into testing with street riding and a few day trips before I take it on a long Journey. In this case I didn’t have time for any of that so it was a true trial by fire for the Krios! Good or bad this would be the helmet I was wearing for the next three days and some 800 miles off road. There was no time for me to become acquainted with my new helmet as we were literally rolling out of the parking lot as I unpacked it. I slid it on for the first time hoping for the best and immediately began field-testing.
Most motorcyclists tend to think of summer as the premier riding season and I think by and large fall is overlooked. Granted it’s a much shorter season and the days aren’t quite as long but the riding can far surpass that of summer. The temperatures and conditions are much more pleasant and in most places the countryside is literally exploding with color. Inclement weather can be a deterrent for some when really a little bit of rain and cooler temperatures can be the perfect storm for primo riding conditions.
To say that fall weather in Idaho is temperamental would be a drastic understatement. Shoulder season conditions can be phenomenal but they can also quickly remind you that winter is approaching. This is especially true when traveling into the high country where the cool affirmation of winter is always in the air. Weather can vary drastically, cold and clear in the morning, warm and sunny mid day, freezing rain in the afternoon and then back to clear and cool again in the evening! With versatility in mind I configured my Krios out of the box with the tinted shield and a set of clear Radius goggles. This proved to be an ideal setup for the manic conditions and terrain that quickly varied from easy going to demanding.
Moody weather systems were a mere distraction to the awe-inspiring beauty of Idaho’s backcountry. With so much open space and unspoiled wilderness it made an ideal outdoor playground and the perfect place to take in all the glory of the season. Fast moving weather did nothing to deter my experience and actually helped me to appreciate the mostly ideal climate even more. My new Krios did not disappoint in all these varied conditions with its plush interior, effective venting and great field of vision. I was relieved that it was living up to my expectations and not hindering my experience on this ride.
Cresting Pinion Pass outside of Stanley, Idaho I got the distinct feeling that we were the last patrons of a carnival that was closing its gates for the season. Without another soul for miles the Sawtooth Mountains felt like our own private range.
At 9,300 feet I could see my breath in the Krios helmet that I had grown so found of and was simultaneously warmed by the un-obscured setting sun. Small patches of snow freckled the mountainside and the next weather system promised to bury this place in snow but in that moment the conditions were perfect and I could not think of a better ride I had experienced in any season or any place.