Sun Valley, Idaho-based Club Ride firmly believes that technical riding gear doesn't have to look like it came straight off a sponsored professional's back. In addition to making casual looking baggy shorts and western-inspired riding shirts, Club Ride also offers three pairs of jeans, including the Cog.
Club Ride Cog jeans features
- Performance two-way stretch 12oz denim with 1 percent Lycra
- Pre-shrunk, garment-washed
- Seamless crotch gusset
- RideLight reflective accents on side pocket, rear pocket, inside drive-side pant leg
- Zippered side smartphone pocket
- Straight fit
- Inseam: 33"
- Waist sizes: 31, 32, 33, 34, 36
- Colors: Eclipse Denim, Indigo Denim
Denim with details
Denim is the main ingredient in the Cog jeans with a bit of Lycra mixed in. The 12oz denim falls right in the middle in regards to denim weights, with under 12oz considered lightweight, 12–16oz mid-weight, and over 16oz heavy weight.
On and off the bike they're comfortable, durable and easy wearing. Sounds like a good pair jeans, doesn't it?
The Cogs do have a few details that elevate them beyond standard jeans though. There's a gusset crotch to minimize any in-saddle hot spots, reflective elements at the thigh pocket, rear pocket and inside the right leg cuff, and a cut with articulated knees for pedaling action.
When asked why the Cog jeans have reflective details only on the right driveside leg hem and not on both legs, Club Ride's marketing man Taggart Spenst replied, "...it's typically the only side you roll up your pant leg."
Spenst also mentioned better visibility, "Because the headlights shine brightest on your left leg when you are riding with traffic, the left leg would not reflect as well because the light is so strong that it washes out the reflection. The shadows on the right side allow that strip to reflect much better."
On the bike
The Cog jeans lived up to their billing with comfortable, non-restrictive pedaling. The extra stitching around the knees provides a bit of curvature to the jeans and worked well.
The extended rear waistband, cleverly named NoCrackBack, kept everything covered just as the name suggests.
The clever left thigh side pocket is a very smart feature. It's low key, but sized perfectly for even a plus-sized smartphone and its placement works beautifully while pedaling or trying to shimmy into a booth at the pub.
Cog vs. Swrve vs. Mark II
Interestingly, all three jeans are very different. The Cog and Swrve jeans feel and look the most denim, or jeans-like, while the Thunderbolt Mark II jeans have a much more technical feel and appearance.
The Cog and Swrve jeans differ greatly in the cut with the Slim monikered Swrve jeans fitting tightly with tapered legs and the Cog's being much looser with a straight leg cut. The fit of the Thunderbolt jeans falls in the middle.
As far as on the bike, the Thunderbolts with their super stretchy Schoeller material wins the pedaling prize, followed by the Cogs, and then the trim Swrve jeans.
Whichever jeans suit your style, it's awesome to have serious viable choices for jeans that can handle a bit of pedaling and look great off the bike.