One of the guys on a forum asked about footwear. He wanted good ankle protection and a safe, firmly gripping sole for the motorcycle part of his day. But he also wanted something that didn’t look like a motorcycle boot once he got to work.
Those of us who ride to work routinely face that problem. We need safe and protective clothing while on the bike, but don’t want to look like a biker sitting at our desk. I once rode up to Hot Springs on a day trip for work in October. It was a beautiful fall day and the scenery was amazing, but the weather was unusually cool with temperatures in the upper 40s when I left that morning. I dressed for work in dress pants, shirt and tie. I then slipped a heavy pair of jeans over my pants and a flannel shirt over my dress shirt. I topped that off with my riding leathers. Once I got to the meeting, The leather jacket, vest, chaps, jeans, and flannel shirt got stuffed in a saddle bag. A friend from another location who was also at the meeting looked at me when I came in and said, “You didn’t ride your bike?”
My usual commute is just 9 blocks. I rarely need more than gloves and a good, heavy jacket. I’ll often wear my riding jacket. I don’t have to have a sport coat or blazer at the office, so I can just hang the riding jacket up and work in shirt and tie.
I used to keep a pair of dress shoes in the saddle bag and change when I got to work. Now I wear a pair of boots from Wolverine’s Garrison line called the Montgomery. These resemble WWII combat boots. They have leather uppers and can be kept well shined. Covered by pant legs, they look like dress shoes. They give good ankle protection and have a sole that gives adequate traction for riding. They are also surprisingly comfortable when it comes to standing for long periods.
With more people riding, I’m surprised that there aren’t more offerings that meet the need of working riders. I suppose most riding is still recreational and equipment manufacturers don’t see a demand for “formal riding wear.”
— Guy Wheatley