March 7, 2014
Maintaining a keen awareness of your surroundings is one of the best things you can do to keep yourself safe when cycling on the road. Since bicycles don't come stock with rearview mirrors, and not everyone can turn their heads without veering out into the road, an aftermarket rearview mirror can be a huge asset.
There are a couple different ways bicycle mirrors can be setup. They can be affixed to handlebars, sunglasses, or helmets. Having spent some time using each of these styles, my personal preference has steered me towards the helmet-mounted variety. I like to keep my handlebars relatively clutter free, and my sunglasses come on and off quite a bit throughout the course of a ride.
If you're in the market for a mirror and a fan of handmade products, may I turn your attention to Tiger Eye. These mirrors are handmade in the United States using a stainless steel bicycle spoke and high-quality glass optics. Rubber coating on the spoke helps keep the mirror tightly gripped to your helmet, and it's plenty stiff to keep from bouncing around too much on rough surfaces.
There's a variety of fun artwork options to choose from when picking out a mirror, such as chainring imprint, Colorado state flag, and of course, a tiger's eye. If none of those suit your fancy, there are also custom options. We've been happy with the mirrors we had branded for Adventure Cycling.
At $18.99 for a mirror, these are reasonably priced, and a key piece of equipment to add to your bicycle tour pack list.
TOURING GEAR & TIPS is written by Joshua Tack of Adventure Cycling's member services department. It appears weekly, highlighting technical aspects of bicycle touring and advice to help better prepare you for the journey ahead. Look for Josh's "Fine Tuned" column in Adventure Cyclist magazine as well.