Back in the Fall, I saw Jesse show up for one of the rides with a Bern helmet. I liked the styling, but really got to thinking it would make a fantastic winter helmet. A few weeks later while visiting one of the local shops, I got one for myself.
Getting the helmet in Fall, I was able to try the helmet in a variety of temperatures. With very small vents on the top, the helmet was too hot for my tastes when riding in temperatures that approached 50 degrees and warmer. But when the temperatures really drop, this helmet is superior for keeping you warm.
Regular mountain bike helmets are full of vents, including vents right over your forehead. This channels the cold air, snow, and rain right onto your cranium. The Bern has a little ventilation on top where you need it, but keeps most of the elements out. When accompanied with a head band or skull cap, your head feels toasty. Even on the coldest morning commutes.
The only problem I’ve had with it, is that because of the lack of vents, I’m not able to mount my helmet light on the top. You should also be aware that these helmets are available in two formats, a “hard hat” and a “helmet”. According to Bern’s website, the hard hat version “does not meet the standards for action sport head protection”. I own the hard hat version, and feel comfortable with its protective qualities. You can be your own judge. I’ve seen the Berns in more than one of the local bike shops if you’re interested.
Bonus: The Bern helmet has snaps near the ears for adding optional ear covers, and there is a goggle strap retention hook on the back of the helmet should you want to wear goggles.
Double Bonus: If you get the green one like I did, you can get plenty of “Great Gazoo” comments.