Specialized Recon 2.0 Shoes review

With a reasonably stiff pedalling platform and very easy to walk in, these shoes are great for off-road adventures

Specialized Recon 2.0
(Image credit: Future)
Cycling Weekly Verdict

The Specialized Recon 2.0 Shoes are especially good for more adventurous rides which might require a little bit more off-the-bike manoeuvrability. They have a flexible forefoot and a sole with deep lugs made from a grippy rubber, which makes walking around very easy to do. But for all that, the pedalling efficiency has not been compromised and they are very comfortable for cycling long distances, with the single Boa dial providing an even tension. The one niggle I had was that they are quite high volume compared to other shoes, and the Velcro toe strap didn’t do too much to hold my forefoot in place securely for hard efforts.

Reasons to buy
  • +

    Flexible forefoot

  • +

    Supportive sole

  • +

    Very grippy tread

  • +

    Long distance comfort

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    Quite high volume

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Although Specialized might bill the Recon 2.0 as a mountain bike shoe, it crosses over excellently for gravel riding.

Off-road ready 2-bolt cleats are a lot more durable than the 3-bolt plastic ones used on road shoes—and the matching pedals are far better at shedding mud too.

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Stefan Abram
Tech features editor

After winning the 2019 National Single-Speed Cross-Country Mountain Biking Championships and claiming the plushie unicorn (true story), Stefan swapped the flat-bars for drop-bars and has never looked back. 

Since then, he’s earnt his 2ⁿᵈ cat racing licence in his first season racing as a third, completed the South Downs Double in under 20 hours and Everested in under 12.

But his favourite rides are multiday bikepacking trips, with all the huge amount of cycling tech and long days spent exploring new roads and trails - as well as histories and cultures. Most recently, he’s spent two weeks riding from Budapest into the mountains of Slovakia

Height: 177cm

Weight: 67–69kg