For a long time now I’ve been looking for the perfect pedal solution for my commuter bike. My commute is about fifteen miles round trip, with lots of hills, so regular pedals don’t really cut it. At the same time, I use the bike for lots of trips close to home for which I like to wear normal shoes, so clipless pedals would be a problem.
I had been using Power Grips, which keep my feet in position and provide a bit of pull without requiring bike shoes. Straps or clips weren’t an option as they and I don’t seem to get along (partly, I think, because of my slightly wonky, splayed feet). The Power Grips were dead cheap, and locked my feet in place reasonably well. But they remained a pain in the bum to get in and out of. On those busy stretches of downtown, where there’s a light every block, I would give up on being strapped in as sometimes it could take a block just to get my feet in place.
Several months ago I went clipless on my road bike, something that completely revolutionized my biking and for which there’s definitely no going back. This also made the Power Grips seem sort of half-assed. I contemplated going clipless for the long ride into work, keeping a pair of regular shoes in the office. But that would rule out biking in normal shoes for the pub, post office or coffee shop.
Enter the perfect solution: the nattily named Forte Campus Pedal. They’re clipless on one side and suitable for regular shoes on the other. I’ve just installed them, and they definitely work well with either kind of footwear. The customer reviews suggest that they might conk out after a couple of thousand miles, but if that’s the case I’ll just upgrade to Shimano’s more expensive version. Right now, though, it really does look like I have the best of both worlds. I think I’ve found my full-assed pedal solution.