Warm, durable overshoes that perform well... once you’ve accepted that they’re not really waterproof
The wrong choice of clothing is one of the worst winter cycling mistakes. However the Caratti Deep Winter overshoes show that winter rides and frozen feet needn’t come hand in hand (foot in foot?), but we’re not convinced they warrant the their ‘waterproof’ label.
What’s most impressive about the Caratti overshoes is the closed-cell neoprene material which is used for the main body. From our experience this is completely windproof. Admittedly the fairly benign start to the British winter has meant we haven’t been able to test these in truly Arctic conditions, but we enjoyed toasty toes during early morning rides with the mercury hovering comfortably below freezing.
However, Caratti also claims that these overshoes have a “waterproof construction”, and that’s something we’re really not convinced about. The neoprene which is used for most of the overshoe does a decent job keeping the rain at bay, and is certainly a match for a couple of hours’ riding through steady rain, but it is completely undermined by the dodgy fit.
We found the fit to be tight around the shoe (not necessarily a bad thing), but loose around the ankle, allowing water to run down the leg and quickly saturate our socks. In heavy rain this meant pretty soggy feet within 10 or 15 minutes, which is not a pleasant feeling if you’ve got a long ride in front of you.
The Caratti Deep Winter overshoes claw back marks elsewhere. One of the main problems with neoprene is that it is not the most robust of materials. Thankfully these overshoes have a reinforced sole that does a good job of preventing the material from splitting and wearing away around the heel and cleat holes, holding up to “walking in and out of a cafe” test which we love here at CW.
The rear zip is also sturdy, and doesn’t give the feeling of constantly being on the verge of splitting (although this may be due to the loose fit around the ankles), and the Velcro across the top of the zip stays nicely in place and comes with a nice reflective touch.
Once you accept that these are not waterproof overshoes, the Caratti Deep Winter overshoes are a very solid piece of kit. They’ll keep your feet nice and toasty in very cold conditions, and shouldn’t wear out by the end of winter.