left-side view of grey/black Reevu RV dLX 363 helmet

This Could Have Been My Head!

The Tour Divide was such a grueling race that it seemed like every piece of equipment I used took a beating. Even those not part of or attached to the bike.

For example, take a look at my European Reevu helmet. I just fully inspected it today. It was a helmet I used for the last five years—one I was reluctant to retire because it has a novel embedded mirror that was by far the best rear-view bicycle solution I have ever seen or used, but it is no longer made or sold anywhere anymore. Guess it is time to retire it now.

Click on the image below for a larger view:

cracks pointed out in old Reevu RV dLX 363 helmet
Due to crashing multiple times, there were multiple cracks in my Reevu helmet.

I suspect the cracks were from my last crash on Day 26 (July 8th) of the Tour Divide. I was in the middle of the Gila Wilderness of New Mexico during a monsoon and night time had befallen, but I was determined to carry on in a desperate attempt to reach a town (Mimbres, NM) that carried food for the first time in 200 miles—that is, until I toppled over the side of a rut I completely didn’t see, my headlights not being quite adequate for the torn-up, rain-battered trail.

Too bad—this means I will need to acquire a “normal” helmet now and look for (or develop my own) another rear-view bicycle solution. Without some sort of mirror, I’d now feel somewhat naked particularly when commuting in traffic.

Ah, well—I guess this is an opportunity to wear a helmet that looks a little more fashionable and less Darth Vader-like. And at least my skull is still intact!


July 2, 2011: Three years later, I have finally found the solution: the Italian Road Bike Mirror. In contrast to the Reevu helmet, this mirror inserts into the drops of the handlebar (replacing a bar plug). You set it once and as it is non-adjustable, remains in place. To look at it, you merely glance down. The view is about the same while riding the hoods, handlebar tops, or drops.

I don’t consider this looking down motion to be any more time-consuming than rolling the eyeballs upwards (to look at the Reevu visor-embedded mirror), and it gives you the added benefit of using a lighter and better-ventilated helmet that doesn’t obscure your vision with a bulky visor when you are riding the drops or aerobars.

Kudos to the inventor of the Italian Road Bike Mirror.

The actual view in the convex glass of the Italian Road Bike Mirror.
The actual view in the convex glass of the Italian Road Bike Mirror.
left-side view of grey/black Reevu RV dLX 363 helmet
The Reevu RV dLX 363 helmet with built in rear-view visor mirror.