As part of Bicycle Quarterly, Jan Heine routinely tested bicycle parts that weren’t readily available to the U.S. market. At times, he’d import small batches for their readers, including tires from Grand Bois and Challenge. Now, he’s decided to produce their own under the Compass brand.
The range is made for them by Panaracer, but are their own exclusive molds, designs and tread patterns. The center section uses straight ribs, and cornering grip is provided by chevronned ribs, all very low profile. Six sizes are available, each getting its own name inspired by some of their favorite bits of riding:
- Cayuse Pass 700C x 26 mm
- Chinook Pass 700C x 28 mm
- Stampede Pass 700C x 32 mm
- Barlow Pass 700C x 38 mm
- Loup Loup Pass 650B x 38 mm
- Babyshoe Pass 650B x 42 mm
Roll on for more tech details…
The tires are designed with “very supple” casings to maximize comfort and reduce rolling resistance. They’re performance tires first, but with 3mm thick tread sections, they’re designed to be durable, too, and hold up to back road adventures.
All models are available in an Ultralight with either black or tan casings and folding beads. Some are also available in standard clincher skinwall versions (below). Weights range from 182g up to 392g depending on version. The lightest is the 700×26 Cayuse Pass, which is remarkably light for such a wide tire. All the better for climbing up those big mountain passes.
Check out the full line, and the rest of their offerings, at CompassCycle.com.