By Kevin Rouse
Photo by JP Van Swae
First things first. Trabec. Yes, we're as confounded by the name as you likely are. Is it a sideways allusion to America's eminently bland television gameshow host Alex Trebek? Or is it just the product of a few Swedes left to their own devices--IKEA anyone? Actually, after a fair bit of research, one finds that the helmet extracts its name from none other than the scientific term, trabecula. Go figure.
Semantics aside, the Trabec was one of the early players in all-mountain specific helmets. POC, a Swedish company, comes from a snow-sports background, and the Trabec clearly shows those influences.
Slip the helmet on though, and the first thing you'll notice is its fit. For those accustomed to primarily XC offerings, be prepared for a different experience.
Rather than providing the feeling of sitting on top of your head, the Trabec gives the impression that it fully envelops it, for a fit that is surprisingly comfortable. The helmet's adjustment mechanism is simple to operate and doesn't require much fuss, staying put and in adjustment throughout most rides.
Unfortunately though, the Trabec's shape doesn't interface all that well with some of the eyewear we tested in conjunction with it. Unique to the POC Trabec is its aramid-filament-reinforced EPS core that, when paired with the low-seam-count polycarbonate shell, offers plenty of protection for high-risk riding. Ventilation was adequate, thanks to 16 well-spaced vents, though again, carefully consider your climate when making your color selection--black can get a tad toasty. But thankfully, when it comes to color choice, no one can come close to matching POC's palette.