By Colin Dennis
Sizes: Med 54-57, Large 58-60
Size tested: Med
‘If you want to get ahead, get a hat’ goes the old maxim, but if you want to keep your head well protected in the MTB enduro scene then you should definitely cast an eye in the direction of the Catlike Leaf Helmet for your cranial protection.
Spanish helmet maesto's, Catlike, may be better known for their high-profile team sponsorship with their road helmets with Team Movistar, but if you’re serious about chucking your mountain bike around on the trails then you’re going to ride more confidently with something pretty substantial to protect your head.
At a claimed 260g the Catlike Leaf is a substantial helmet which nods towards the rider who hits the bike parks, and more specifically the enduro routes that flow top to bottom of the more forward thinking trail centres.
Adventurous types who still head out to explore the open moorlands such as Exmoor, the Lakes, and the Yorkshire Dales and the like, will certainly benefit from the confidence that such well-built helmet brings.
But it’s not a case of adding weight for the sake of it; the Leaf is a comfortable and adaptable off-road helmet that ticks all the boxes to cover everything outside a full face helmet except possibly cross-country racing weight-weenies. The D2 visor can easily be shifted forwards or back depending how you like it. Again, even this part of the Leaf feels substantial and well-engineered.
But that’s the point of the Leaf, it is so well engineered, even the furry Catlike logos on the outer casing reflect its feline heritage. Slipping the Leaf on to your head, the leaf sits easily into place, a quick twist of the small dial on the MPS Evo fitting system and you’re already feeling secure.
The straps adjusts easily around the ears and with a click and a tug at the chinstrap and you’re away. Everything feels secure, there’s no wobbling. The Catlike Leaf inspires confidence, certainly more than any open-faced mountain bike helmet I’ve used before.
Ventilation is ample with no less than 23 vents there’s no excuse to overheat on the trail – mind you, that might depend on how fast you go as to how quickly the airflow drives through the vents.
There’s a bug net at the front to help keep any fast-fling nasties at bay and the workman-like reflective logo on the back of the Leaf reminds those trailing in you wake that they should have maybe invested more wisely!
In summary: Anyone who rides there mountain bike hard will feel the benefit of Catlike’s Leaf Helmet. It’s a comfortable and confidence inspiring fit. It’s not an expensive outlay for helmet of this quality – what price comfort and safety, eh?