Bikes

309 posts in this category.
Interbike mini-review: Raleigh Cadent

Interbike mini-review: Raleigh Cadent

By Justin Steiner

The Cadent, along with its female counterpart the Alysa, make up the “Performance Hybrid” portion of Raleigh’s on-road lineup. These bikes fit squarely between Raleigh’s road bikes and their more casual, more comfy, less sporty hybrids.


Review: Shimano Alfine 11-speed drivetrain

Review: Shimano Alfine 11-speed drivetrain

Shimano Alfine group

By Eric McKeegan

I’ve always been interested in internally geared hubs, but other than servicing a random few in my shop days, I’ve had little riding time with them until we started Bicycle Times. Over the last year I’ve spent many of my commuting and utility miles on Shimano’s Alfine group.


Review: Linus Roadster 8

Review: Linus Roadster 8

By Karl Rosengarth, photos by Justin Steiner


Review: Electra Amsterdam Royal 8i

Review: Electra Amsterdam Royal 8i

By Justin Steiner

The Electra Bicycle Company believes a bike should be more than just a tool for transportation; it should be a fun and functional extension of your personal style. As a result, they’ve carved out a niche for themselves as purveyors of posh and pleasurable cycles.


Review: Jamis Bossanova

Review: Jamis Bossanova

By Karl Rosengarth


Reader’s Rides: Custom-fabricated full-suspension fatbike

Reader’s Rides: Custom-fabricated full-suspension fatbike

Editor’s note: Chris saw our short video about the Salsa full-suspension fatbike prototype and wrote in with the story of his own build. Thanks Chris! Got an interesting or unusual bike you’d like to share? Send some details to web@dirtragmag.com

By Chris Willsey,


Review: Surly Troll

Review: Surly Troll

By Jon Pratt. Photos by Jon Pratt and Justin Steiner.


Reader’s ride: Custom modified Klein Adept 29er

Reader’s ride: Custom modified Klein Adept 29er

Kelly Noltensmeier’s Klein Adept features a custom rear triangle, modern components, and yes, 29-inch wheels.

By Adam Newman

When Kelly Noltensmeier decided to take on longer, more endurance-oriented rides and races, his all-mountain bike just wouldn’t do. After borrowing a friend’s 29er he knew the big wheels were the ticket, but rather than purchase a new bike, he eyed his Klein Adept and thought… “why not?”


Review: Specialized Secteur

Review: Specialized Secteur

By Eric McKeegan

Thinking more about fast group rides, maybe a bit of racing, or even some light touring? Let’s take a look at the Secteur, which is the aluminum version of Specialized’s Paris Roubaix-winning (and creatively named) “Roubaix.”


Review: Lynskey Cooper CX

First Look: Electra Moto cruiser

First Look: Electra Moto cruiser

Electra, the southern California seaside cruiser bike company acquired by Trek in early January, is introducing the Moto—one of its more accessible models–in November. Two models (a singlespeed and three-speed internal) will retail for $549-$659. The company calls the Moto a “blend between a cruiser, mountain bike and a BMX racer.”  The Moto has 29-inch wheels, disc ...


First Impression: Marin Lombard

First Impression: Marin Lombard

Editor’s note: Here at Bicycle Times we are as mindful of price as you are. So we gathered together a group of six very diverse bikes to showcase what you can find right now at the $1,000 price point. See our introduction here. Marin describes the Lombard as having been “Birthed from cyclocross and touring ...


Review: Specialized AWOL Comp Touring

Review: Specialized AWOL Comp Touring

Editor’s note: This review originally appeared in Issue #32 of Bicycle Times. To make sure you never miss a bike review, order a subscription and you’ll be ready for the everyday cycling adventure. The Specialized AWOL Comp ($1,950) is an adventure bike, and a darn good one at that. What’s most surprising about the AWOL ...


First Impression: Specialized Diverge A1

First Impression: Specialized Diverge A1

Editor’s note: Here at Bicycle Times we are as mindful of price as you are. So we gathered together a group of six very diverse bikes to showcase what you can find right now at the $1,000 price point. See our introduction here. All-surface road bikes are what the popular kids are riding—especially here in ...


Field Tested: Jamis Aurora Elite

Field Tested: Jamis Aurora Elite

The Aurora series has been part of the Jamis stable of bikes since the late 1990s and has included the Elite build since 2008. The Aurora Elite comes outfitted with all the basic building blocks for a bike that could be used in any number of ways: full aluminum fenders and aluminum rear rack, both painted ...


Field Tested: Trek Lync 5 commuter bike

Field Tested: Trek Lync 5 commuter bike

So, you’re kinda still married to riding that old Trek carbon racer from 1998, the one with the garish red, white and blue graphics and a Shimano rear shifter that doesn’t work that well anymore? While it was fun watching you-know-who dominate the Tour de France for seven consecutive years, it’s time to step up ...


First Impressions: Trek 720 Disc light adventure touring

First Impressions: Trek 720 Disc light adventure touring

For decades Trek has offered its model 520 steel touring model, specced with bar-end shifters, a rear rack, braze-ons for fenders and low-rider front rack, and clearance for chubby tires to tackle any terrain. For 2015, two new models are joining it in Trek stores: the rugged 920 adventure bike and the lightweight 720, both made ...


First Impressions: Santa Cruz Nomad

First Impressions: Santa Cruz Nomad

We’ve tested lots of bikes at Dirt Rag, but none have garnered even a fraction of the attention of the Miami Vice bike. This blue and magenta heartthrob instigates all sorts of comments from riding buddies and other trail users. Rightfully so, thus far in the test period it’s backed up those good looks with a ...


First Impressions: Ibis Tranny 29

First Impressions: Ibis Tranny 29

Ibis recently introduced a 29-inch version of the Tranny and we’ve have been happily pedaling it around local trails over the past few weeks. What makes it different from other hardtail 29ers on the market? Check out my first impressions of this unique carbon hardtail after the jump.


Inside Line: Jeff Jones unveils new Jones Plus model

Inside Line: Jeff Jones unveils new Jones Plus model

Jeff Jones has been toying with the 29+ concept for years, long before it became a reality thanks to widely available tires. After a lot of experimentation, he has unveiled his second model, aptly named Jones Plus. Built around a 29×3.0 tire, it bucks many industry trends in achieving what Jones said is a spirited ...


First Impression: Novara Mazama

First Impression: Novara Mazama

Every day is a good day for an adventure bike! This one comes to us by way of REI. Say hello to the steel Novara Mazama, designed for bikepacking, grinding gravel and all of your off-the-beaten-path adventures. It seems to work well on the plain-old road too, just in case you were wondering. At first ...


Review: Cannondale Slate Ultegra

Review: Cannondale Slate Ultegra

What the heck is this thing? It seems completely out of left field. It’s a mountain bike with drop bars, right? Not even close. So it’s an adventuremobile gravel grinder? Wrong again. Cannondale labels the new Slate as a “new road” bike, and I’d say it leans heavily toward just that: roads. Dirt roads sure, ...


Review: Scott Sub Evo 20

Review: Scott Sub Evo 20

Drawing on Scott Sports’ European sporting and racing heritage, the Evo 20 is designed to be an urban bike that is well-suited to its environment and fun to ride. In practice, I found it to be a very well-thought-out bicycle that had just about everything you’d find yourself needing to navigate through your city’s streets ...


Review: Felt V85

Review: Felt V85

Tester: Eric McKeegan Price: $1,500 Weight: 22.4 pounds Sizes: 43, 45, 51, 54, 56, 58 (tested), 61 More info: Felt Bicycles V85 Felt makes a lot of drop-bar bikes: race, endurance, aero, cyclocross, track and women’s. This V85 is the middle child of the adventure branch of the Felt drop-bar family. What makes this bike ...


Long-term Review: Santa Cruz Nomad

Long-term Review: Santa Cruz Nomad

Photos by Justin Steiner and Emily Walley We’ve arrived at version 3.0 of the venerable Nomad, a bike that’s pushed the boundaries of pedal-friendly long-travel bikes from its inception. It comes as no surprise to see this new Nomad further redefining the capability and versatility of the all-mountain category, this time with 27.5-inch wheels. Perhaps ...


First Impressions: Trek Remedy 9.9 29

First Impressions: Trek Remedy 9.9 29

It seems like a long while since I’ve been on a Trek. In the couple years that have passed since I last rode one, we now see some of its once proprietary geometry principles implemented by other manufacturers, such as the increased offset fork on 29ers. ‘So what’s new,’ I had to ask as I began ...


First Impressions: Borealis Echo

First Impressions: Borealis Echo

Borealis claims that its Echo is the first ever high-performance fat bike to be designed around RockShox’s 100mm travel Bluto fork. Considering that the company’s headquarters is a mere three miles from SRAM’s Colorado Springs R&D office that’s no surprise. Borealis was the first company to get its hands on the fat bike specific fork ...


Project titanium 29+ from Carver, Whisky, Syntace and Vee Tire

Project titanium 29+ from Carver, Whisky, Syntace and Vee Tire

The new Carver Gnarvester is designed specifically for  29+ (29×3.0 tires) and we got one in-house for a long-term review. We are building up this titanium frame with a selection of new and used components. This is a pretty sweet chainstay yoke. What kind of word is yoke anyway? Sliding dropouts with Paragon Machine Works ...


Specialized revives Sequoia name for adventure road bike

Specialized revives Sequoia name for adventure road bike

The first Sequoia bikes were designed by Tim Neenan as a road bike with an adventure attitude. The second generation, designed by Jim Merz, evolved into a full-blown touring rig to take you around the world. The name appeared on a series of, let’s say, “less-than-exciting” hybrids and city bikes through the years, but has ...


Review: Soma Wolverine

Review: Soma Wolverine

Tester: Justin Steiner Price: $620 (frameset) Weight: 7.1 pounds (frameset) Sizes: 50, 52 (tested), 54, 56, 58, 60, 62 cm I’ve always been a sucker for bicycles that offer heaps of versatility. Sure, some folks will argue that aiming for versatility results in a “jack-of-all-trades, master of none” scenario, but in reality most of us ...


Review: Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt 770

Review: Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt 770

Editor’s Note: This review originally appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #180. To make sure you never miss a bike review, order a subscription today. You’ll be helping to support your independent mountain bike forum. The Thunderbolt is an all-new offering in Rocky Mountain’s 2014 lineup. With its 120mm of front and rear travel, this 27.5-inch ...


Long-term review: Yeti 575

Long-term review: Yeti 575

When the 575 was first introduced a decade ago, it broke the mold for trail bikes. With 5.75 inches of travel, it doubled what other companies were offering, plus it featured a 69-degree head-tube angle, which was unheard of at the time. Back then, it was considered so slack that Yeti told dealers it was ...


Blast From The Past: Pacenti 650b prototype review from 2007

Blast From The Past: Pacenti 650b prototype review from 2007

Editor’s note: This Pacenti 650B bike review first appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #131 in 2007, the same year that Kirk Pacenti showed the first production 650b mountain bike at the North American Handmade Bike Show. By Andy Bruno If you’ve been asking yourself, “How can I rationalize buying yet another bike?”, along comes Kirk ...


Blast From The Past: Kona “A” bike review from 2003

Blast From The Past: Kona “A” bike review from 2003

Editor’s note: This bike review first appeared in Dirt Rag issue #102, published in August of 2003. By Philip Keyes Kona is one cool company. Case in point: these guys are offering the first-ever production, dual-suspension singlespeed. They had to know that they weren’t going to sell millions of these things, but they had the ...


Rank and File: Full suspension trail bikes under $3,000

Rank and File: Full suspension trail bikes under $3,000

We often hear the usual complaint about always testing bikes that are well out of the price range of riders who don’t have a substantial disposable income. But Dirt Rag has always covered (or at least attempted to cover) a wide variety of price points in the bike world. We gathered six bikes to review that represent the ...


First Impression: GT Helion Elite

First Impression: GT Helion Elite

Editor’s note: This is one of six bikes we’ve gathered together that fall between $1,900 and $2,600. Read our introduction to see the other five and watch for our long-term reviews of each in Dirt Rag #182, due on newsstands and in mailboxes any day now. Subscribe now and you’ll never miss a bike review. GT’s ...


First Impression: Kona Precept DL

First Impression: Kona Precept DL

Editor’s note: This is one of six bikes we’ve gathered together that fall between $1,900 and $2,600. Read our introduction to see the other five and watch for our long-term reviews of each in Dirt Rag #182, due on newsstands and in mailboxes in February. Subscribe now and you’ll never miss a bike review. Kona’s line ...


First Impression: Giant Stance 27.5 1

First Impression: Giant Stance 27.5 1

Editor’s note: This is one of six bikes we’ve gathered together that fall between $1,900 and $2,600. Read our introduction to see the other five and watch for our long-term reviews of each in Dirt Rag #182, due on newsstands and in mailboxes in February. Subscribe now and you’ll never miss a bike review. Giant’s Stance ...


Shimano XTR vs Deore: Getting By With Some Help from Our Friends

Shimano XTR vs Deore: Getting By With Some Help from Our Friends

Joe Cocker passed way December 22. Say what you will about his singing, but there is no denying that man put his heart and soul and body into his performances. It was against that backdrop that I unpacked boxes this Christmas Eve, the help from our friends to get the XTR and Deore groups we have ...


First Impression: Niner Jet 9 1-Star

First Impression: Niner Jet 9 1-Star

Editor’s note: This is one of six bikes we’ve gathered together that fall between $1,900 and $2,600. Read our introduction to see the other five and watch for our long-term reviews of each in Dirt Rag #182, due on newsstands and in mailboxes in February. Subscribe now and you’ll never miss a bike review. I picked ...


First Impression: Santa Cruz Bantam D

First Impression: Santa Cruz Bantam D

Editor’s note: This is one of six bikes we’ve gathered together that fall between $1,900 and $2,600. Read our introduction to see the other five and watch for our long-term reviews of each in Dirt Rag #182, due on newsstands and in mailboxes in February. Subscribe now and you’ll never miss a bike review. Santa Cruz ...


First Impression: Cannondale Rush 29 2

First Impression: Cannondale Rush 29 2

Editor’s note: This is one of six bikes we’ve gathered together that fall between $1,900 and $2,600. Read our introduction to see the other five and watch for our long-term reviews of each in Dirt Rag #182, due on newsstands and in mailboxes any day now. Subscribe now and you’ll never miss a bike review.   ...


First Impression: KHS SixFifty 7200

First Impression: KHS SixFifty 7200

KHS was one of the first brands to wholeheartedly embrace 27.5 wheels, putting its first model on the market in 2009 and now offering 19 models across the line. It was able to do so because it is one of the largest manufacturers in the bike industry, building its own bikes as well as those ...


Dirt Rag’s first test-ride on Shimano’s electronic XTR Di2: Part 2

Dirt Rag’s first test-ride on Shimano’s electronic XTR Di2: Part 2

This is Part 2 of my first real shakedown rides with the new Shimano XTR Di2 group. Read Part 1 here. In the span of just a few days since receiving the goods I was able to put almost 150 off-road miles on Shimano’s exciting new XTR Di2 electronic components. Here’s a rundown of how it ...


Trail Tested: Cannondale Trigger 27.5 Carbon Team

Trail Tested: Cannondale Trigger 27.5 Carbon Team

Cannondale designed the Trigger 27.5 Carbon Team to be the quintessential quiver killer—the one bike to replace all others hanging in your shed. Featuring a 140mm-travel carbon Lefty SuperMax fork and Fox DYAD adjustable rear suspension, the Trigger is meant to climb just as well as it descends and comfortably whisk you through everything from ...


First Impression: REI Co-Op ARD 1.2

First Impression: REI Co-Op ARD 1.2

Adventure outlet REI is ushering in spring 2017 with their new bike line, Co-op Cycles. This new line of bicycles increases their focus on adventure products by placing a slightly increased emphasis on the popular, and growing, segment of gravel and adventure inspired bikes. Feedback from a co-op members survey directed REI’s decision making after ...


Trail Tested: Kona Process 111 DL

Trail Tested: Kona Process 111 DL

The Process 111 is the shortest of travel and biggest of wheel in Kona’s lineup of enduro bikes. Focusing on a slight 111mm of rear suspension and 29-inch wheels, it’s easy to wonder how an XC bike ended up with the longer-travel 27.5 offerings, which includes the Process 134 and 153. But, taken as a ...


First Impression: Pivot Mach 429SL

First Impression: Pivot Mach 429SL

The new carbon Mach 429SL from Pivot Cycles shaves half a pound off the previous frame to come in at a very respectable 5.3 pounds. Match that to 100 mm of potent dw-link controlled suspension and this venerable favorite becomes even more attractive. New hollow-core carbon technology from Pivot not only reduces weight but also increases ...


First Impression: Kona Process 134 SE and 134 DL

First Impression: Kona Process 134 SE and 134 DL

By Emily Walley and Justin Steiner Kona launched its Process line of enduro bikes back in 2014 with the 111, 134 and 153, with each of the numeric model names referring to the bike’s rear wheel travel in millimeters. The 134 and 153 were initially available at two price points, with just one price point ...


Exclusive: Dirt Rag test rides new prototype from Chris Currie and Speedgoat Cycles

Exclusive: Dirt Rag test rides new prototype from Chris Currie and Speedgoat Cycles

If the name Chris Curries sounds familiar, it’s for good reason. The bike industry veteran owned Speedgoat Cycles, a Pennsylvania bike shop that grew into a major player. When he sold the company he moved to Portland to shepherd his Asylum brand. Now he is the creative director at Stan’s NoTubes. While he’s been a ...


First Impressions: Turner King Khan full-suspension fat bike

First Impressions: Turner King Khan full-suspension fat bike

I have to admit, when fat bikes first came around, I didn’t like them either. They looked cumbersome and slow. Not my idea of a good time. But once I started riding a few, I started to see the light. Are they a niche product that could only be someone’s “other” bike? Or are they a ...


Trail Tested: Ibis Ripley 29

Trail Tested: Ibis Ripley 29

Photos by Justin Steiner Anyone who followed the saga of the Ripley knows this bike wasn’t easy to birth. Between a completely new dw-link system that uses eccentrics rather than links and a switch to a different factory in the middle of development, to say this was a difficult labor would be an understatement. Ibis stuck ...


Trail Tested: Intense Tracer 275 Alloy Foundation

Trail Tested: Intense Tracer 275 Alloy Foundation

Photos by Brice Shirbach. Intense has carved its niche as a high-end manufacturer of some of the most desirable frames in the mountain bike business. At one time it was an operation that only served up American-made aluminum frames and select parts kits. Recently it set the industry on fire with the $10,000 carbon Tracer 275C ...


First Impressions: Trek Stache 29plus

First Impressions: Trek Stache 29plus

Introduced a few years ago, the first Trek Stache was a conservative, if not somewhat boring entry into the 29er trail bike market. Well no longer. We were shocked when this 29plus trail slayer showed up on our doorstep a few weeks before it was officially announced today at Sea Otter. Looking more like a ...


First Impression: Ghost Kato FS 7 and Riot 9 LC

First Impression: Ghost Kato FS 7 and Riot 9 LC

    Despite more than 20 years of business in the Europe, Ghost isn’t a brand familiar to many folks in the United States. National outdoor retailer REI will certainly change that public awareness as they are now the exclusive distributor of Ghost bicycles in the United States. Ghost bikes are available both in REI stores ...


Trail Tested: Trek Remedy 9.9 29

Trail Tested: Trek Remedy 9.9 29

By Matt Kasprzyk Amidst the 27.5 and fat bike boom Trek has been perfecting a 29er that redefines 140 mm travel, big-wheeled bikes. Sure, there’s a lot of proven Trek features that riders are familiar with, but the latest iteration of the Remedy is a mind-expanding ride experience because of two major design features: the ...


Inside Line: First ride on the 2016 Specialized Stumpjumper FSR

Inside Line: First ride on the 2016 Specialized Stumpjumper FSR

If any one single model epitomizes “mountain bikes” it’s the Specialized Stumpjumper. One of the first mass-produced off road bicycles, it been a mainstay of the lineup since 1981. Its evolution has traced the course of mountain bike design, through various frame materials, suspension setups and user categories. There are no fewer than 19 different Stumpjumper ...


First Impressions: Santa Cruz Highball 27.5 CC XX1

First Impressions: Santa Cruz Highball 27.5 CC XX1

As we reported in February 2015, Santa Cruz has added a 27.5 option to its 2015 Highball lineup. The original 29er model also received minor geometry tweaks, but in both wheel sizes, the hardtail remains true to its cross-country, racy roots. The CC designation denotes an upgraded carbon frame that, thanks to some nips and ...


Trail Tested: Pivot Mach 429SL

Trail Tested: Pivot Mach 429SL

Pivot isn’t a brand that rests on its laurels. With the undeniable success of the original aluminum Mach 429 came the natural progression to a full carbon frame in 2013. More than just a change of frame material, the bike also had small but important geometry tweaks to further refine the already great-handling machine. Now, ...


Trail Tested: Fyxation Blackhawk

Trail Tested: Fyxation Blackhawk

Fyxation might not be the most familiar brand to mountain bike riders, having started life focusing on the urban riding scene. Which is why this carbon fat bike came as a surprise from a company whose bike line is otherwise a fully steel affair. I asked Ben Ginster, Fyxation’s marketing guy, about the decision to ...


Trail Tested: Kona Process 134 SE and DL

Trail Tested: Kona Process 134 SE and DL

By Justin Steiner and Emily Wally. Photos by Jeff Swigart, Michael Raney, Emily Walley and Justin Steiner. Though we’re far from reaching gender equality in the mountain bike world, the percentage of female mountain bikers rises steadily every year. Despite this increase in participation, the industry’s adoption of the women’s market has occurred in fits and ...


First Impression: 2016 Trek Top Fuel 9.9 SL

First Impression: 2016 Trek Top Fuel 9.9 SL

Trek discontinued its 26-inch wheeled Top Fuel cross-country line a few years back in favor of re-branding Gary Fisher’s successful 29er Superfly. Now, as the Superfly grows long in the tooth the Top Fuel is reborn in 2016 and it’s as modern and high-tech as a cross-country bike can be. Like the longer travel Fuel ...


First Impression: 2016 Specialized S-Works Camber FSR Carbon

First Impression: 2016 Specialized S-Works Camber FSR Carbon

Action photos by Carson Blume Destination: Trail. That was the buzzword surrounding the much anticipated launch of the all-new Specialized Camber. To showcase just how capable and versatile this bike is Specialized choose the Downieville and Lakes Basin area in Northern California as launch headquarters, based out of the Graeagle Lodge which proved to be ...


First Impressions: 2015 Felt Virtue 3

First Impressions: 2015 Felt Virtue 3

Felt has some bold claims for their 2015 line of Virtue trial bikes. If they’re really going to be the “benchmark for all trial bikes” then this here combo of Felt’s Equilink and Fast suspension better be the shit. There are some really solid 29-inch trail bikes on the market these days, so how is ...


Trail Tested: Jamis Dragon Pro

Trail Tested: Jamis Dragon Pro

Jamis is betting that the rider who wants a steep, short-travel cross-country bike is moving away from steel and looking for newer and lighter materials like carbon fiber. Thus they have redesigned the Jamis Dragon 29 to appeal to the more aggressive trail rider. Looking over the dramatic changes for the new model, I think some pretty wise choices ...


Inside Line: First ride on new 2016 Salsa models

Inside Line: First ride on new 2016 Salsa models

Ponyrustler Spotted as a prototype at Sea Otter, the new 27plus full suspension bike from Salsa made its official debut today with two carbon fiber models and an aluminum model built around the excellent Split Pivot suspension. If you’re ridden the Horsethief 29er and enjoyed it, you’re likely to feel right at home on the ...


First Impressions: Kona’s new Honzo AL/DL, Hei Hei Trail and Precept 150

First Impressions: Kona’s new Honzo AL/DL, Hei Hei Trail and Precept 150

Kona’s tagline for its 2016 lineup is “Going Deeper” and it’s an apt description for its largest-ever product range. While some models carry over largely unchanged, nearly every mountain bike gets an update of some kind, and several get ground-up redesigns. We sampled some of the latest on the trails outside Bellingham, Washington. Honzo AL/DL ...


First Ride: Specialized Stumpjumper FSR 6Fattie

First Ride: Specialized Stumpjumper FSR 6Fattie

Specialized went all-in on 27plus bikes for the 2016 model year with 6Fattie versions of the Stumpjumper and Rhyme, as well as dedicated 6Fattie hardtail models for men and women, called the Ruse and Fuse. Here at Crankworx Whistler we took our first ride aboard the top-of-the-line S-Works Stumpjumper FSR 6Fattie with 150 mm of travel ...


First Ride: Rocky Mountain Maiden World Cup

First Ride: Rocky Mountain Maiden World Cup

A little over a week ago Rocky Mountain announced its new Maiden downhill bike, and we brought you up to speed on the details here. As we hoped, we were able to ride a few laps aboard an early-production Maiden World Cup at Whistler. After a period of downhill bikes trending steadily slacker, the market seems to have ...


Project 27plus Part 3 — Hayduke lives!

Project 27plus Part 3 — Hayduke lives!

It’s taken most of the summer but we’ve finished gathering parts for our 27plus project bike. We started this process earlier this year when rumors of a fat 27.5 production bike were just a whisper and no one was really sure what to make of Trek and SRAM’s “Boost” hub spacing. Then came Sea Otter and ...


Trail Tested: Turner King Khan full suspension fat bike

Trail Tested: Turner King Khan full suspension fat bike

In a world of “me too” carbon bikes from overseas, the Turner King Khan is an American-made, full-throttle “F-you.” With a frame that’s welded up from good-ol’ metal in the U.S. of A., it’s a flag-waving, big-block, red-meat monster ready to crush anything in its path. There’s no denying that you better be an outgoing ...


First Ride: New Santa Cruz Bronson and 5010

First Ride: New Santa Cruz Bronson and 5010

Roughly two and a half years after the initial release of the Bronson and 5010, both bikes have been updated with more progressive geometry and the third iteration of Santa Cruz’s VPP suspension design. The 5010 and Bronson have been hugely successful for Santa Cruz, so updating these popular models was a serious undertaking. Last ...


First Ride: New Juliana Roubion and Furtado

First Ride: New Juliana Roubion and Furtado

Since the initial release of the Roubion and Furtado, a host of changes have taken place in the trail bike market. For 2016, Juliana is updating both the Roubion and the Furtado to reflect these evolutions in design, including slacker head tube angles and steeper seat tube angles coupled with a longer, lower top tube and ...


Interbike: Fuji Auric 1.1 First Ride

Interbike: Fuji Auric 1.1 First Ride

Fuji is not usually the first brand that springs to mind when most riders think of mountain bikes, but full suspension has returned to the company product line and Fuji’s new Auric with M-Link suspension design just might begin to change minds. The M-Link suspension design was first introduced on Breezer’s Supercell and Repack. Breezer is a sister ...


Field Tested: Santa Cruz Highball 27.5

Field Tested: Santa Cruz Highball 27.5

From Issue #186 Earlier this year, the Santa Cruz Highball 29er welcomed a 27.5 little brother to the family, and the siblings are like two peas in a pod. The 27.5 Highball is designed to mimic the cross-country-oriented trail manners of its 29er predecessor. Sure, 27.5 and 29 bikes inherently “feel” different. But that’s exactly ...


Field Tested: BMC Speedfox SF02 29

Field Tested: BMC Speedfox SF02 29

From Issue #186 BMC from Switzerland is certainly well known as a racing brand. Internationally, Julien Absalon, who is arguably the most famous and winningest cross-country racer on the circuit today, won last year’s world championship on his full-suspension BMC Fourstroke FS01 29. Here in the U.S., Stephen Ettinger won a cross-country national championship while ...


First Ride: Ibis Ripley LS

First Ride: Ibis Ripley LS

Last year, I reviewed the Ibis Ripley. I liked it well enough, but my tastes in mid-travel 29er leans towards low and slack, while the Ripley is more long-travel cross-country. I also got yelled at (via email) by for being too soft on the bike. Which was a valid complaint, as I had inadvertently cut ...


First Impression: Trek Fuel EX 29 9.9

First Impression: Trek Fuel EX 29 9.9

Few bikes have such a storied lineage as the Fuel EX. Trek introduced a refreshed version of its 27.5-wheeled version last year with the incorporation of the Fox Re:aktiv shock technology. This year the 29er model gets the same treatment, with a host of the same features plus some new ones. While still built around a 120 ...


First Impression: Marin Attack Trail 7

First Impression: Marin Attack Trail 7

Ed’s Note: This bike is part of our annual, sub-$3,000 bike test where the Dirt Rag staff spends significant time aboard less-expensive but fully capable offerings that we’d seriously consider buying ourselves. The final review will be out early 2016 in issue #189. Subscribe today so you don’t miss it! Price: $2,750 Marin’s Attack Trail 7 ...


First Impression: Scott Spark 950

First Impression: Scott Spark 950

Ed’s Note: This bike is part of our annual, sub-$3,000 bike test where the Dirt Rag staff spends significant time aboard less-expensive but fully capable offerings that we’d seriously consider buying ourselves. The final review will be out early 2016 in issue #189. Subscribe today so you don’t miss it! Price: $2,700 Scott’s cross-country specific Spark ...


First Impression: Charge Bikes Cooker 4

First Impression: Charge Bikes Cooker 4

Ed’s Note: This bike is part of our annual, sub-$3,000 bike test where the Dirt Rag staff spends significant time aboard less-expensive but fully capable offerings that we’d seriously consider buying ourselves. The final review will be out early 2016 in issue #189. Subscribe today so you don’t miss it! Price: $2,400 Charge Bikes’ Cooker 4 ...


First Impression: Kona Hei Hei Trail

First Impression: Kona Hei Hei Trail

Ed’s Note: This bike is part of our annual, sub-$3,000 bike test where the Dirt Rag staff spends significant time aboard less-expensive but fully capable offerings that we’d seriously consider buying ourselves. The final review will be out early 2016 in issue #189. Subscribe today so you don’t miss it! Price: $2,500 The Hei Hei has ...


Dirt Rag Editor’s Choice 2015: Mike’s Honorable Mentions

Dirt Rag Editor’s Choice 2015: Mike’s Honorable Mentions

Editor’s Note: Our 2015 Editor Choice Awards are out now in Dirt Rag Issue #188. But those items aren’t the only things we were impressed with this year. Here is a list of honorable mentions from our editor-in-chief. If you want to know what we chose as our favorite bikes and gear of 2015, pick up the ...


First Impression: Surly Wednesday

First Impression: Surly Wednesday

Editor’s Note: This bike is part of our annual, sub-$3,000 bike test where the Dirt Rag staff spends significant time aboard less-expensive but fully capable offerings that we’d seriously consider buying ourselves. The final review will be out early 2016 in issue #189. Subscribe today so you don’t miss it! Price: $1,500 The new Wednesday brings ...


First Impression: Devinci Hendrix RS

First Impression: Devinci Hendrix RS

Ed’s Note: This bike is part of our annual, sub-$3,000 bike test where the Dirt Rag staff spends significant time aboard less-expensive but fully capable offerings that we’d seriously consider buying ourselves. The final review will be out early 2016 in issue #189. Subscribe today so you don’t miss it! Price: $2,999 The Devinci Hendrix RS ...


First Impression: Transition Patrol 4

First Impression: Transition Patrol 4

Ed’s Note: This bike is part of our annual, sub-$3,000 bike test where the Dirt Rag staff spends significant time aboard less-expensive but fully capable offerings that we’d seriously consider buying ourselves. The final review will be out early 2016 in issue #189. Subscribe today so you don’t miss it! Price: $2,999 Last year, Transition Bikes ...


First Impressions: Norco Torrent 7 Plus

First Impressions: Norco Torrent 7 Plus

Ed’s Note: This bike is part of our annual, sub-$3,000 bike test where the Dirt Rag staff spends significant time aboard less-expensive but fully capable offerings that we’d seriously consider buying ourselves. The final review will be out early 2016 in issue #189. Subscribe today so you don’t miss it! Price: $2,425 The Torrent name is ...


Review: Scott Spark 700 SL

Review: Scott Spark 700 SL

From Issue #182 The dry, kitty-litter-covered trails of Bootleg Canyon in Nevada can be a cruel testing ground. The twisty singletrack is nearly traction-less and the many rock formations are often not for the faint of heart: While small, they can be steep and often located in turns. In the realm of modern mountain biking, ...


The One-Bike Challenge

The One-Bike Challenge

Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt 790 MSL BC Edition How far can a short-travel trail bike take you? From Issue #187 We are at an interesting point in the technological advances in mountain bikes. For years the idea was always more. More travel, more gears, more bigger wheels. But now we’ve started to dial things back: Single ...


Blast From the Past: Koski Ski Bike Review

Blast From the Past: Koski Ski Bike Review

Editor’s note: This report by Dirt Rag’s special operations team, known only as “The Committee,” appeared in Dirt Rag Issue #78, published in April 2000. Status: For your eyes only. Target: Mono Trac (ski bike) Source: Koski Snow Sports, Mill Valley, California Creator: Don Koski Suggested Retail: $1,500 Description: Dual-suspension ski bike, with 8 inches ...


Editor’s Choice 2015: Our favorite bikes

Editor’s Choice 2015: Our favorite bikes

This is Dirt Rag’s second year doing an official “Editor’s Choice.” With editorial staff of all shapes and sizes, spread out all over the country, we can’t just pick one product per category and call it the best. Also notice our timing. While we could do this in the early spring, how much ride time ...


Review: Salsa Powderkeg Tandem

Review: Salsa Powderkeg Tandem

This review was originally published in our sister magazine, Bicycle Times Testers: Justin Steiner and Emily Walley Salsa first began prototyping tandems back in 2010 when former Salsa Engineer Tim Krueger and his wife Odia saw other couples racing the Chequamegon Fat Tire Festival’s Short and Fat Race on tandems. Now, many prototype miles later, ...


Review: Rocky Mountain Maiden

Review: Rocky Mountain Maiden

Tester: William Kirk Age: 32 | Height: 5’ 9″ | Weight: 185 lbs. | Inseam: 31” Overview Like many riders, I fell victim to the enduro bike bug. After almost 15 years of owning various downhill bikes, this was finally the year I said goodbye to owning a gravity-specific rig. Despite my admiration for long, slack, one-trick ponies, ...


Review: Trek Top Fuel 9.9 SL

Review: Trek Top Fuel 9.9 SL

Tester: Mike Cushionbury | Age: 45 | Height: 5’10″ | Weight: 155 lbs. | Inseam: 32” Trek discontinued its 26-inch-wheeled Top Fuel cross-country line a few years back in favor of the successful Gary Fisher 29er Superfly FS. Now, as the Superfly grows long in the tooth, the Top Fuel is reborn for 2016. And it’s as modern ...


First Ride – Santa Cruz Hightower 27plus/29 inch trail bike

First Ride – Santa Cruz Hightower 27plus/29 inch trail bike

Disclaimer: Junket- a free trip by a member of the press to a place where something (such as a new bike) is being promoted. Let’s get that out of the way first. The new Santa Cruz Hightower was introduced to select members of the media on a trip to Chile for the first running of ...


Review: KTM Lycan LT 217 XX1

Review: KTM Lycan LT 217 XX1

Tester: Eric McKeegan | Age: 41 | Height: 5’11” | Weight: 155 lbs. | Inseam: 32” KTM isn’t the first name to come to mind when thinking of pedal bikes in the United States. We are more familiar with its motorized two-wheelers, and I’ll admit to looking lustfully at the KTM website, and wishing for an Adventure 690 to ...


First Impression: Salsa Pony Rustler

First Impression: Salsa Pony Rustler

Salsa Cycles’ Pony Rustler is the rotund sibling of the brand’s well-admired Horsethief. Both bikes feature the same basic platform and very similar components, with the obvious difference being the wider wheelset of the Pony Rustler. I’ve been riding the Carbon X01 build for a few weeks and have been impressed on how well it ...


First Impression: Marin Pine Mountain 1

First Impression: Marin Pine Mountain 1

Finally, I get my grubby mitts on a bike with them thar plus-sized tires. My portulent partner for the next few weeks is Marin’s Pine Mountain 1, sporting a pair of 27.5 x 3.0 inch Schwalbe Nobby Nic tires rolling on wide-bodied Maddux DD40 rims. Those tires and I are bound to become best buds, ...


Blast From the Past: 1984 Specialized Stumpjumper

Blast From the Past: 1984 Specialized Stumpjumper

Photos by Justin Steiner, Adam Newman and Kyle Heddy In the new issue of Dirt Rag, #190, you’ll find our side-by-side-by-side comparison of the latest and greatest Specialized Stumpjumper FSR models. Now available in three wheel sizes, it’s likely the longest-tenured mountain bike model in existence, after company founder Mike Sinyard introduced it to the ...


Review: Polygon Collosus N8

Review: Polygon Collosus N8

Tester: Justin Steiner | Height: 5’7” | Weight: 165 lbs. | Insteam: 31” Bike sizes: S, M (tested), L, XL | Price: $4,899 Polygon is a name much more well known outside the United States. Unless you follow World Cup DH racing, where you’ve surely seen Tracey and Mick Hannah rocking Polygon’s Collosus DHX race bike, ...


Review: Cannondale Habit Carbon 1

Review: Cannondale Habit Carbon 1

Tester: Mike Cushionbury | Height: 5’10” | Weight: 155 lbs. | Inseam: 32” Bike sizes: S, M (tested), L, XL | Price: $7,460 Before Cannondale’s new 27.5 Habit had even been released, it gained considerable momentum and interest when WTB/Cannondale rider Jason Moeschler won the coveted “All-Mountain World Championships” in Downieville, California, thanks to a ...


Review: Trek Fuel EX Jr

Review: Trek Fuel EX Jr

Testers: Eric and Oona McKeegan Originally published in Issue #138 Buying your kid a bike is a good idea. Is buying your kid a better bike a better idea? Fortunately my daughter and I got the chance to find out with the new Fuel EX Jr. Unlike the full-suspension kids bikes that are often all ...


Review: Juliana Furtado and Norco Fluid 7 Forma

Review: Juliana Furtado and Norco Fluid 7 Forma

Tester: Emily Walley | Height: 5’4” | Weight: 110 pounds | Insteam: 29.5” Originally published in Issue #189 As women’s mountain bike options continue to evolve, it can be difficult to find the ideal bike for your skill level as well as your wallet. If you are a new rider, with undetermined commitment, the options ...


Review: Guerrilla Gravity Megatrail

Review: Guerrilla Gravity Megatrail

Tester: Justin Steiner | Height: 5’7” | Weight: 165 pounds | Inseam: 31” The Megatrail is the second bike released by Colorado-based manufacturer Guerrilla Gravity. The company’s first bike was a full-bore downhill bike dubbed the GG/DH. Where the GG/DH was designed to punish downhill courses, the Megatrail strives to blend downhill prowess and pedaling ...


First Impression: Kona Hei Hei Race DL

First Impression: Kona Hei Hei Race DL

Since this is a “first impression” write up, I will give you my unvarnished first impression of Kona’s new carbon Hei Hei Race DL: “Woo hoo!” The Hei Hei Race DL marks Kona’s return to using carbon fiber frames on its (non-DH) mountain bikes, after a few years spent refining the process and finding the right ...


First Ride: Rocky Mountain Pipeline

First Ride: Rocky Mountain Pipeline

For some riders the name Pipeline will bring up old memories of adjustable travel URT suspension and Giro Switchblade helmets. But put those thoughts out of your head. This new bike might as well be an alien species for how little DNA is shares with that early freeride bike. Much like the Sherpa, Rocky’s first ...


Review: Devinci Hendrix RS

Review: Devinci Hendrix RS

This is our third annual roundup of trail bikes that aren’t priced to the stratosphere. We could call them affordable, budget, real-world, blue-collar or college-fund-friendly, but someone would take offense at our assumption of disposable income level. It doesn’t really matter though. These are great bikes for the price, and we’ll leave it up to ...


Review: Marin Attack Trail 7

Review: Marin Attack Trail 7

This is our third annual roundup of trail bikes that aren’t priced to the stratosphere. We could call them affordable, budget, real-world, blue-collar or college-fund-friendly, but someone would take offense at our assumption of disposable income level. It doesn’t really matter though. These are great bikes for the price, and we’ll leave it up to ...


Review: Charge Cooker 4

Review: Charge Cooker 4

This is our third annual roundup of trail bikes that aren’t priced to the stratosphere. We could call them affordable, budget, real-world, blue-collar or college-fund-friendly, but someone would take offense at our assumption of disposable income level. It doesn’t really matter though. These are great bikes for the price, and we’ll leave it up to ...


Review: Norco Torrent 7.1

Review: Norco Torrent 7.1

This is our third annual roundup of trail bikes that aren’t priced to the stratosphere. We could call them affordable, budget, real-world, blue-collar or college-fund-friendly, but someone would take offense at our assumption of disposable income level. It doesn’t really matter though. These are great bikes for the price, and we’ll leave it up to ...


Review: Transition Patrol 4

Review: Transition Patrol 4

This is our third annual roundup of trail bikes that aren’t priced to the stratosphere. We could call them affordable, budget, real-world, blue-collar or college-fund-friendly, but someone would take offense at our assumption of disposable income level. It doesn’t really matter though. These are great bikes for the price, and we’ll leave it up to ...


First Impression: Lenz Sport Behemoth 29plus

First Impression: Lenz Sport Behemoth 29plus

Bigger is always better, right? YUUUUGE is the name of the game this year, so why not embrace it? The latest bike from Colorado framebuilder Devin Lenz is a behemoth. Actually it’s the Behemoth, a 5-inch travel trail bike built for 29plus wheels. Lenz said he was skeptical about the plus wheels at first but ...


Review: Kona Hei Hei Trail

Review: Kona Hei Hei Trail

This is our third annual roundup of trail bikes that aren’t priced to the stratosphere. We could call them affordable, budget, real-world, blue-collar or college-fund-friendly, but someone would take offense at our assumption of disposable income level. It doesn’t really matter though. These are great bikes for the price, and we’ll leave it up to ...


Review: Surly Wednesday

Review: Surly Wednesday

This is our third annual roundup of trail bikes that aren’t priced to the stratosphere. We could call them affordable, budget, real-world, blue-collar or college-fund-friendly, but someone would take offense at our assumption of disposable income level. It doesn’t really matter though. These are great bikes for the price, and we’ll leave it up to ...


Review: Advocate Cycles Hayduke

Review: Advocate Cycles Hayduke

Tester: Adam Newman Age: 35, Height: 6’2”, Weight: 180 lbs., Inseam: 34” Price: $750 (frame). Complete bikes from $2,699 Sizes: S, M, L (tested), XL More info: Advocate Cycles The Hayduke is named for the infamous anti-hero of “The Monkey Wrench Gang,” Edward Abbey’s 1975 cult classic novel of radical environmentalism (and sabotage) in the ...


Review: Specialized Stumpjumper FSR faceoff

Review: Specialized Stumpjumper FSR faceoff

Photos: Justin Steiner Graphic: Stephen Haynes As of this writing, very few manufacturers offer 27.5, 27plus and 29 inch wheels within one model lineup, but Specialized has embraced wheel size options big time for 2016. The venerable Stumpjumper FSR is available in 14 complete builds and five frame-only options across all three wheel sizes. Complete ...


Review: Santa Cruz Hightower CC

Review: Santa Cruz Hightower CC

Tester: Eric McKeegan Age: 42 Height: 5’11”, Weight: 160 lbs., Inseam: 32” Price: $2,899 frame; complete bikes from $4,599; $6,499 (tested) Sizes: M, L (tested), XL  More info: Santa Cruz Bicycles Photos: Gary Perkin Santa Cruz was very late to the 29er ballgame, but came out swinging with the Tallboy. That was soon followed by the Tallboy ...


First Ride: Salsa Timberjack 27plus

First Ride: Salsa Timberjack 27plus

Ed note: This is part of our initial bike test of three new hardtails introduced at QBP Saddle Drive 2016, each shod with 27plus tires: the aluminum Salsa Timberjack, carbon Salsa Woodsmoke and steel Surly Karate Monkey. Despite their obvious differences, we will draw some comparisons and distinctions among the three, so make sure to ...


First Ride: Kona Big Honzo DL

First Ride: Kona Big Honzo DL

Riding photos by Caleb Smith/Kona Kona is the kind of brand that when it wants to f*ck around, it doesn’t f*ck around. It makes solid product backed by solid people who are genuinely more interested in having a great time—on and off the bike—than raking in the dough. I was lucky enough to score an ...


First Ride: Salsa Woodsmoke 27plus

First Ride: Salsa Woodsmoke 27plus

Ed note: This is part of our initial bike test of three new hardtails introduced at QBP Saddle Drive 2016, each shod with 27plus tires: the aluminum Salsa Timberjack, carbon Salsa Woodsmoke and steel Surly Karate Monkey. Despite their obvious differences, we will draw some comparisons and distinctions among the three, so make sure to ...


First Ride: Surly Karate Monkey 27plus

First Ride: Surly Karate Monkey 27plus

Ed note: This is part of our initial bike test of three new hardtails introduced at QBP Saddle Drive 2016, each shod with 27plus tires: the aluminum Salsa Timberjack, carbon Salsa Woodsmoke and steel Surly Karate Monkey. Despite their obvious differences, we will draw some comparisons and distinctions among the three, so make sure to ...


Review: Salsa Pony Rustler

Review: Salsa Pony Rustler

Tester: Jon Pratt Age: 45; Height: 5’10”; Weight: 190 pounds; Inseam: 31” Salsa Cycles is not one to shy away from big tires, so it is only natural to see another one of its bikes with a bit of extra rubber show up at our door for review. This time around it’s the Pony Rustler, ...


Review: Intense Primer

Review: Intense Primer

Tester: Zach White Sizes Small, Medium, Large, XL(tested) MSRP: $9499 Factory build, $6999 Pro build, $5899 Expert build Weight 25.9lbs, as tested The Bike Intense’s all new Primer will be quite familiar to Spider 29 fans, as it’s essentially a nicely updated version of the already well-sorted Intense Spider of last year. Sticking with a VPP ...


Review: Kona Process 153

Review: Kona Process 153

Tester: Justin Steiner Age: 33, Height: 5’7″, Weight: 165 lbs., Inseam: 31” Bike price: $5,000 Sizes: M, (tested) L, XL Kona first launched the Process lineup in 2013 for the 2014 model year. Since then, we’ve reviewed and revered both the 29 inch Process 111 (issue #178) and the 27.5 inch Process 134 (issue #184). Based on those ...


Review: Trek Fuel EX 9.8 27plus

Review: Trek Fuel EX 9.8 27plus

Tester: Eric McKeegan Age: 42, Height: 5’11, Weight: 155, Inseam: 32 inches Price: $5,300 Sizes: 15.5, 17.5, 18.5, 19.5 (tested), 21.5 More info: Trek Fuel EX The previous generation Fuel EX was Trek’s best selling full-suspension bike. With Trek’s move to a more race-focused Top Fuel last year, it came as a surprise to see ...


Made in USA trail bike guide

Made in USA trail bike guide

If you want your next trail bike to be made in the USA but don’t want to wait a year or so for a custom project, check out this list of companies crafting stock frames in the states. Alchemy Alchemey makes the rarest of the rare, a carbon fi ber, full-suspension trail bike, the Arktos. ...


First Ride: Surly Karate Monkey singlespeed 29

First Ride: Surly Karate Monkey singlespeed 29

The old Surly Karate Monkey got a few small changes over the years but, for the most part, it was the same bike that helped 29ers gain mainstream acceptance starting in 2002. It was launched that year at the very event we’re now detoxing from (Interbike). We covered the new Karate Monkey earlier this year and brought ...


First Ride: Surly Krampus

First Ride: Surly Krampus

Folklore describes the Krampus as a half-goat, half-demon Christmas wrecker that punishes children who are bad and will not be getting a visit from Saint Nick. If misbehaving is wrong, I don’t want to be right. The new Surly Krampus is too much fun for that nonsense. The Krampus roared to life five years ago as one of ...


Review: Santa Cruz Tallboy

Review: Santa Cruz Tallboy

Tester: Jon Pratt Age: 46 | Height: 5’10” | Weight: 190 lbs. | Inseam: 32” Price: $6,500 Sizes: S, M, L (tested), XL, XXL More info: Santa Cruz Bicycles  The Tallboy from Santa Cruz Bicycles has always been a class favorite 29er. It was just getting a little long in the tooth. So with knowledge ...


Review: Ibis Mojo 3

Review: Ibis Mojo 3

Tester: Mike Cushionbury Age: 46 Height: 5’10” Weight: 157 lbs. Inseam: 32” Price: $6,199 (as tested), $2,999 (frame and shock only) Sizes: S, M, (tested) L, XL More: Ibis Cycles It’s been just over 10 years since the legendary Ibis Mojo 2 was released. At that time it was one of the most definitive trail ...


Review: Kona Hei Hei Race DL

Review: Kona Hei Hei Race DL

Tester: Katherine Fuller Age: 30 Height: 5’4″ Weight: 120 lbs. Inseam: 31” Price: $4,200 Sizes: S, (Tested), M, L, XL Online: Kona Bikes I laughed when the powers that be said I was getting a “race” bike to test because racing is not exactly my thing, but it immediately became apparent that approaching this review ...


First Ride: 2017 Kona Operator

First Ride: 2017 Kona Operator

Photos by Caleb Smith and the author. Let me start this out with some honesty. The last time I was on a downhill hike was almost two years ago, and even then I was nursing a torn rotator cuff. While I’ve always enjoyed true DH riding, it doesn’t happen very often, so keep that in ...


First Ride: 2017 Liv Hail and Pique

First Ride: 2017 Liv Hail and Pique

Words: Karen Brooks Photos: Sterling Lorence Women’s brand Liv doubles down on the women’s market with two fresh new models. A group of 20 female journalists from around the world got to sample the all-mountain/enduro Hail and the XC/trail Pique on beautifully rugged trails around Sedona, Arizona, led by Liv celebrity coaches Lindsey Voreis and ...


First Ride: 2017 Rocky Mountain Slayer 790 MSL

First Ride: 2017 Rocky Mountain Slayer 790 MSL

by Zach White Weight: 29.5lbs with pedals, size Large Sizes: Small, Medium, Large(tested), XL MSRP:  $6999   After a couple of years out of the rotation, Rocky Mountain is putting Slayer back into the mix. This is where it’d be appropriate to reminisce of the original Slayer models and share little tidbits of personal experience ...


Review: Rocky Mountain Pipeline 770 MSL

Review: Rocky Mountain Pipeline 770 MSL

Tester: Karl Rosengarth Age: 59 | Height: 5’10” | Weight: 150 lbs. | Inseam: 32” Price: $4,799 Sizes: S, M, L, XL (tested) More info: bikes.com Rocky Mountain calls the new-for-2016 Pipeline an “aggressive trail” bike. This pugnacious, plus-sized rookie uses the exact same carbon fiber main frame as Rocky’s 29 inch Instinct trail bike. ...


First Impression: Salsa Woodsmoke 29+ X01

First Impression: Salsa Woodsmoke 29+ X01

Salsa describes the Woodsmoke as a “singletrack/bikepacking/off road exploration” bike. That’s a wide-ranging job description, but the carbon fiber Woodsmoke is an exercise in versatility. The same frame is offered in 29er, 27plus or 29plus builds. Salsa sent us the Woodsmoke 29+ X01 model, which rolls on 29plus rubber. This resourceful rig is well-equipped for ...


First Impression: Trek Farley EX 9.8

First Impression: Trek Farley EX 9.8

Trek designed the Farley EX 9.8 to be a year-round bike capable enough to tackle any trail or weather condition. Fortunately I got my hands on this beauty at just the right time, as we transitioned between a glorious fall and bitter winter. I figured the large 3.8″ 27plus tubeless tires would be a welcome ...


First Impression: Jones Plus

First Impression: Jones Plus

The year 2016 was all about going “YUGE”, and no other bike I rode last year inspired me to go big like the monster Jones Plus. For the uninitiated, Jeff Jones has been designing his own brand of “non-suspended, off-road bicycles” for years, first by hand and now in full production overseas. The secret sauce ...


First Impression: Viral Skeptic

First Impression: Viral Skeptic

The new Viral Skeptic is not your ordinarily hardtail. And before you get huffy about that weird looking black box nestled in the bottom bracket junction, it’s not an electric motor but a 12-speed internal gearbox made by German company Pinion. The Taiwan-made frame is beautifully executed, with clean welds and a seat tube port ...


First Impression: Cannondale Bad Habit Carbon 1

First Impression: Cannondale Bad Habit Carbon 1

Cannondale’s Bad Habit could not have rolled into our Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania headquarters at a more appropriate time. As the trails began their late-season transition into an array of conditions from pristine hard packed to mud, slop and snow, the Bad Habit was ready to impress. On more than a handful of occasions, I found myself ...


Review: Scott Big Jon Fat Bike

Review: Scott Big Jon Fat Bike

Words and photos by Zach White It seemed fitting to have a budget-oriented fat bike show up at the doorstep the day after getting back from riding a handful of various all-carbon, high-end fat bikes in Crested Butte during Fat Bike World Championships. Pedaling $5000+ fat bikes around in big, mellow, snowy loops at a ...


First Impression: Marin Hawk Hill

First Impression: Marin Hawk Hill

At $1,499 the 27.5 Hawk Hill may be the lowest-priced bike in our upcoming group test of under-$2,500 full-suspension trail bikes, but it’s far from overmatched. Judicious use of house-branded components keeps the budget tight, without cutting corners on important bits such as the Shimano Deore Shadow Plus derailleur, Shimano hydraulic disc brakes and high-quality ...


First Impression: Trek Fuel EX 7

First Impression: Trek Fuel EX 7

The Trek Fuel EX 7 exceeds the price limit of our $2,500 Trail Bike round up by a measly hundred bucks, but we decided it was so well spec’d that we couldn’t pass it up. For the current generation, Trek increased the Fuel EX to 130 mm of travel, giving it more aggressive trail geometry. ...


Review: Fat Bike Ski

Review: Fat Bike Ski

Words and photos by Zach White Ask anyone who’s ridden a fat bike in snow, and if they’re the honest type, they’ll tell you how finicky the bikes are about conditions. Specifically, if the snow isn’t hardpacked, riding will be difficult, if not impossible. On soft, ungroomed trail, front tires don’t offer much float or ...


Review: REEB Reebdonkadonk Fat Bike

Review: REEB Reebdonkadonk Fat Bike

Words and photos by Zach White There’s a big part of me that wants to give REEB a huge middle finger of a review due to the simple fact that there was no Oskar Blues beer offered while picking up or dropping off our REEBdonkadonk loaner at their bike-and-taco shop, CyleHops CANtina (Editor’s Note: This ...


NAHBS 2017: Day 1 Photo Dump

NAHBS 2017: Day 1 Photo Dump

Hello from Salt Lake City! We’re here at the North American Handmade Bicycle Show, checking out some highly unique and interesting bikes and bike-related things from builders around the country and world. This is personally my first time at the show, but it’s been one that I’ve been hearing about for the past several years. ...


Some Interesting Bikes of NAHBS 2017

Some Interesting Bikes of NAHBS 2017

There was no shortage of cool bikes to be seen at NAHBS this year. While it’s impossible for me to pick my absolute favorite, there are definitely a number that I noticed and appreciated for one reason or another. Here are just a few of them, with more to come. Oddity Cycles I really liked all ...


NAHBS 2017: Funk Cycles

NAHBS 2017: Funk Cycles

Funk Cycles was born in 1988 as the brainchild of Darryl Funk, whose passion lies in rethinking the status quo and creating bikes that are outside of the box. Starting out in aluminum when most of the industry was still using exclusively steel, and then moving on to titanium, Funk’s flagship design deviates from the norm ...


Santa Cruz Chameleon returns as a 29/27plus trail hardtail

Santa Cruz Chameleon returns as a 29/27plus trail hardtail

Words by Zach White, photos by Gary Perkin MSRP $2,000 (R Kit) Sizes S, M, L(tested), XL Available Now As the name suggests, Santa Cruz’s Chameleon has historically been a frame that’s adapted to various riding styles quite well. Over the years, I’ve seen them built up as dirt jumpers, singlespeed trail bikes, freeride hardtails, ...


Review: Viral Skeptic

Review: Viral Skeptic

Tester: Mike Cushionbury × Age: 47 × Height: 5’10” × Weight: 155 lbs. × Inseam: 32” One thing is for certain, the new Viral Skeptic is not your ordinary hardtail. And before you get huffy about that weird looking black box nestled in the bottom bracket junction, it’s not an electric motor but a 12-speed ...


Review: SE Racing OM-Duro

Review: SE Racing OM-Duro

Tester: Eric McKeegan × Age: 42 × Height: 5’11” × Weight: 165 lbs. × Inseam: 32” This bike seems to speak to a lot of riders on an almost genetic level. Perhaps it is because BMX bikes are buried deep in the DNA of every mountain bike and every mountain biker. How do I know ...


Review: Yeti SB4.5c

Review: Yeti SB4.5c

Words and photos by Zach White Age:42 x Height: 6’2″ x Weight: 200 lbs. x Inseam: 32” “Hey man, sweet bike!” As a bike whore, er, “product reviewer,” I get an interesting perspective on brands and their reputation. There are times when I’ll ride a completely dialed and worthy bike for months on trails shotgunned ...


First Impression: Kona Honzo CR Trail DL

First Impression: Kona Honzo CR Trail DL

Kona knocked it out of the park with the Honzo CR Trail DL. Featuring a stealth matte black finish, aggressive all-mountain geometry and a reasonably lightweight package, this Honzo is a grand slam. It took all but five minutes on my initial ride to develop an attachment, which quickly led to confirming with our Tech Editor ...


First Look: Cannondale Jekyll and Trigger – all new trail and enduro bikes

First Look: Cannondale Jekyll and Trigger – all new trail and enduro bikes

Look! A new bike release without mention of plus tires! Or even 29ers. Just good-old 27.5 Minion tires in the ever popular 2.35 width on all models. While the Lefty is gone, along with the weird pull-shock from previous Trigger and Jekyll models, don’t let the conservative take on wheels and tires and missing propriety ...


First Ride: Marin Wolf Ridge

First Ride: Marin Wolf Ridge

Marin promised something truly new when the invite went out to attend a pre-Sea Otter media camp. The Wolf Ridge delivers on that. Using the NAILED R3ACT-2 PLAY suspension design, Marin claims to have created a 160 mm-travel 29er that pedals and handles well enough to be the “one bike” to ride anywhere and everywhere. ...


Sea Otter Classic: Kids bikes and little shredders

Sea Otter Classic: Kids bikes and little shredders

The number of companies making kid-specific bikes is continuously growing. Rather than simply seeing smaller (yet heavy) versions of adult bikes with cheap components, we are starting to notice a movement towards high quality rigs for kids. There were several new brands and models at Sea Otter this year. Prevelo Prevelo launched just two weeks before ...


Sea Otter Classic: Gravel gets suspended

Sea Otter Classic: Gravel gets suspended

It’s no secret that drop bar gravel riding and racing is hitting its stride and that’s even more apparent by the influx of custom bikes popping up within the bike industry. While most if not all production versions resemble cyclocross bikes rather than mountain bikes, clever insiders are pushing the concept of making custom, more ...


Review: Salsa Woodsmoke 29+ X01

Review: Salsa Woodsmoke 29+ X01

“Salsa—you have made some risky decisions before, but this time you have gone too far.” That quip is a sample of the feedback that Salsa received after the Woodsmoke launch. The company’s marketing manager admitted that the Woodsmoke pushed the boundaries as to what people expected from Salsa. He went on to say, “Mountain biking ...


First Impression: Kona Hei Hei Trail DL 27.5

First Impression: Kona Hei Hei Trail DL 27.5

  The 140 mm-travel “Trail” variant represents a new 27.5 branch on a Hei Hei family tree that is deeply rooted in cross-country riding. Our $5,999 DL model occupies the middle price point, with the $7,499 Supreme perching on the top rung and the plain old Trail ringing the register at $4,199. Kona designed the ...


First Impression: Jamis Dragonfly 26+ Pro

First Impression: Jamis Dragonfly 26+ Pro

The Jamis Dragonfly is a 26plus steel hardtail designed as a women’s-specific bike, featuring a shorter top tube in relation to seat tube, lower standover height, a shorter wheelbase and smaller sizing than its counterpart, the Dragonslayer. The Dragonfly comes in two different models—Sport and Pro. I tested out the Pro, which upgrades from the Sport with ...


Review: Cannondale Bad Habit Carbon 1

Review: Cannondale Bad Habit Carbon 1

When the Cannondale Bad Habit Carbon 1 rolled into HQ, I was skeptical at first. Big ol’ meaty 27plus tires, 120 mm of front and rear squish, the fork was missing its right half, and a dropper. For Pete’s sake, a dropper! I admit, my skepticism was likely driven by the fact that all of ...


Review: Jones Plus

Review: Jones Plus

For the uninitiated, Jeff Jones has long sought to built the best non-suspended mountain bike in the world, without consideration for trends, gimmicks or nostalgia. His latest model, the Plus, is made in Taiwan from butted chromoly with a Boost 148 rear axle and available in three sizes, two with a diamond frame and a ...


This Just In: Pivot introduces 2018 Mach 5.5 Carbon

This Just In: Pivot introduces 2018 Mach 5.5 Carbon

Pivot Cycles was launched in 2007 with the aluminum Mach 4 and 5. According to founder and chief engineer Chris Cocalis this new trail bike builds on that original legacy, one of constantly innovating. The brand’s first carbon bike was the Mach 5.7. “In 2011 we launched Mach 5.7 Carbon as a 2012 product and ...


Paul Camp wows “journos” with blue bits, bike rides, beer

Paul Camp wows “journos” with blue bits, bike rides, beer

I have a warm place in my heart for Paul. Just look at that happy camper. Paul Components and Dirt Rag Magazine both started in 1989 and we’re both pushing 30 years as companies. We met at Interbike before either of us were big enough to even have a booth. And we’ve grown together over the years ...


Review: RSD Wildcat

Review: RSD Wildcat

Rubber Side Down isn’t a new brand, but it has quietly built an ever-expanding series of mountain bikes. Previously, those bikes have all been hardtails, but 2017 brings the Wildcat, a full-suspension departure from RSD’s hardtail homogeneity. As is the case with those hardtails, RSD’s first foray into full-suspension is distinctive, to say the least. ...


Review: Kona Honzo CR Trail DL

Review: Kona Honzo CR Trail DL

Tester: Scott Williams Age: 31 Height: 5’10” Weight: 175 lbs Inseam: 32″ Back in 2012, Kona unleashed the Honzo, an aggressive all-mountain steel hardtail featuring geometry that was long, low and slack before those aggressive angles were common among trail bikes. After spending some time aboard my friend’s Honzo, I felt like it suited my ...


First Ride Review: Intense Carbine

First Ride Review: Intense Carbine

By Zach White  Monster truck. If Dirt Rag would allow for a two-word review, that’d be the summary of Intense’s new 29-inch, 160 mm/155 mm front/rear travel Carbine. From the flashy, neon paint job to the ability to roll right over anything it was pointed at in Sedona, Arizona, last month for the Magura/Intense press ...


Travis T’s Falconer “Krusty Diamond” at Paul Camp

Travis T’s Falconer “Krusty Diamond” at Paul Camp

Arriving at Paul Camp in Chico, California (Back in May), I was immediately drawn to one particular bike-to-rule-them-all, Travis T’s “Krusty Diamond,” built by Cameron Falconer over in Quincy, California, painted by Russ Picket of Mountain Goat fame, and built with as many California and U.S. made parts as humanly possible. I thought I should find out ...


Review: Raleigh Stuntman

Review: Raleigh Stuntman

Tester: Eric McKeegan Age: 43 Height: 5’11” Weight: 165 lbs. Inseam: 32” Self, you need to go for a ride.” “Yeah, but I have to finish writing this review and box up a bike and do some laundry and think about dinner and, and, and, and.” “Shut up.” “Hey asshole, watch it, we’ve both got ...


Review: Pivot Switchblade Pro XT/XTR 1x

Review: Pivot Switchblade Pro XT/XTR 1x

Tester: Eric McKeegan Age: 43 Height: 5’11” Weight: 165 lbs. Inseam: 32” At first glance, the Pivot Switchblade doesn’t seem to be much different than bikes with similar travel numbers and 29/27plus wheel compatibility. But look closely and you’ll start to see a lot of small differences that add up to a compelling machine. Those ...


Win a Framed Bikes Marquette Alloy bike

Win a Framed Bikes Marquette Alloy bike

Contest ended. Congrats to Donna Fulton of Chalmette, LA.! We’re sorry the promotion you are trying to access has ended. Framed Bikes has partnered with us to give one winner a Framed Marquette Alloy Bike. Enter to win below!  The Framed Marquette aluminum alloy frame with a 148 x 12 thru axle is held sturdy ...


First Ride: Heller Barghest

First Ride: Heller Barghest

Heller Bikes launched last year as a QBP-affiliated brand that aims to give the customer “the best bang for the buck” and create quality bikes at an affordable (relatively-speaking) price point. The brand’s first bike was the Bloodhound carbon fatbike, soon followed by the Shagamaw, a 27plus carbon hardtail. For Saddle Drive this year, the ...


Review: Scott Spark 950

Review: Scott Spark 950

Tester: Mike Cushionbury Age: 47 Height: 5’10” Weight: 158 lbs. Inseam: 32” Scott’s revamped Spark line is vast and thorough. It hosts 39 models all based on a new-single pivot rocker-link suspension design and the elimination of links at the dropouts. Included in the lineup are options to choose 27.5 or 29 inch wheels at ...


Review: Jamis Dragonfly 26+ Pro

Review: Jamis Dragonfly 26+ Pro

Tester: Helena Kotala Age: 27 Height: 5’3” Weight: 127 lbs. Inseam: 29” The Jamis Dragonfly is a little bit of everything. Parts of it seem decidedly old-school, like a steel hardtail frame and 26 inch wheels. But these seemingly archaic standards are combined with modern geometry, boost spacing, a dropper post and plus tires to ...


Review: Salsa Deadwood SUS XT 1 x 11

Review: Salsa Deadwood SUS XT 1 x 11

Tester: Eric McKeegan Age: 43 Height: 5’11” Weight: 160 lbs. Inseam: 32″ There is no getting around it, the Deadwood SUS is perhaps the weirdest full-suspension bike released by a major player in a long time, for a number of reasons. There is little that is normal about this bike. The name, geometry, suspension travel, wheel ...


First Ride: Rocky Mountain Instinct 29

First Ride: Rocky Mountain Instinct 29

By Zach White  Being thrown on a brand new, completely unfamiliar and slightly wrong sized bike, and expected to follow a Canadian cross-country legend on his backyard trails could’ve gone a few different ways. Luckily for me, Rocky Mountain’s new Instinct 29 is an easy bike to adapt to, and maybe Dre Hestler was being ...


First Impression: Kona Unit

First Impression: Kona Unit

By Adam Newman Ah yes, the Kona Unit. At once the least glamorous and most amorous model in the Kona lineup. A no-frills, knobby tire gateway drug for the masses. The Unit may be simple but it has changed through the years, and for 2017 Kona is showing off its versatility by swapping out the ...


Review: Kona Hei Hei Trail DL 27.5

Review: Kona Hei Hei Trail DL 27.5

Tester: Karl Rosengarth Age: 59 Height: 5’10” Weight: 150 lbs. Inseam: 32” As the industry continues to dive headfirst into the longer-lower-slacker deep end, Kona, despite having a big part in creating this trend in the first place, takes a step back from the edge with the Hei Hei Trail. Instead of a carbon version ...


Review: Soma Juice

Review: Soma Juice

By Eric McKeegan Some things just go together. Cream cheese and bagels. Peanut butter and chocolate. Harleys and guys dressed like pirates. Soma and steel. Soma has been turning out high-quality steel frames to fill niches in the industry for years, and the newest version of the Juice updates this hardtail with more wheel size ...


First Impression: Pivot LES

First Impression: Pivot LES

When Pivot made subtle updates to their LES for 2017, the sliding dropouts and sub 70º head angle which made the LES a crowd pleaser when it first came to fruition in 2012 remained intact. As Gordon “Quadsworth” Wadsworth, the 3x National Ultra Endurance (NUE) Series singlespeed champion states, “Budda don’t need no grease.” With ...


First Ride: Kona Process G2 153

First Ride: Kona Process G2 153

The news we’ve all been waiting for: Carbon Process! OK, maybe not EVERYONE was waiting, but there is no arguing that the high-end trail and all-mountain markets are dominated by carbon-framed bikes, and the Process line, while being some sweet riding bikes, weren’t on the radar of the carbon-ravenous among us. Obviously, this isn’t just ...


First Ride: 2018 Specialized Enduro

First Ride: 2018 Specialized Enduro

By Zach White Specialized listened to feedback from riders about both the 27.5 and 29 Enduros and made some small geometry adjustments for 2018. Tired of hearing “lower, longer, slacker”? Too bad, because that’s a big part of what changed. Stack heights see a slight reduction, reaches stretch 5-15 mm, and the head tube angle ...


Ride Review: Marin B-17 3

Ride Review: Marin B-17 3

The pickings were pretty slim at Interbike’s Outdoor Demo this year, especially if you didn’t want to just ride e-bikes all day, which I didn’t (I did try one out – it was alright but didn’t offer the same satisfaction as riding a human-powered bicycle). Luckily, Marin was around with a full fleet of non-e-bikes. Rather than ...


Review: Santa Cruz Chameleon

Review: Santa Cruz Chameleon

Tester: Zach White Age: 42 Weight: 200 lbs. Height: 6’ 2” Inseam: 32” As the name suggests, Santa Cruz’s Chameleon has historically been a frame that’s adapted to various riding styles quite well. Over the years, I’ve seen them built up as dirt jumpers, singlespeed trail bikes, freeride hardtails, townies, and even straightforward trail bikes ...


Review: Marin Hawk Hill 27.5

Review: Marin Hawk Hill 27.5

Tester: Karl Rosengarth Age: 59 Height: 5’10” Weight: 150 lbs. Inseam: 32” The 27.5 Hawk Hill is an entry-level bike that passes muster. The frame is built from 6061 butted and hydroformed aluminum alloy. Judicious use of house-branded components saves money without cutting corners on important bits such as the Shimano Deore Shadow Plus derailleur, ...


First impression: Carver Ti All-Road

First impression: Carver Ti All-Road

Carver’s Ti All-Road is a mountain biker’s road bike. It’s more than ready for rough road rambles, gravel grinds and singletrack shortcuts. Built from 3/2.5 titanium alloy, the All-Road comes with a lifetime warranty and crash replacement discount. Stock frames come in 2 cm size increments (from 44-62 cm) and retail for $1,400. For $200 ...


Review: Specialized Fuse Expert Carbon 6Fattie

Review: Specialized Fuse Expert Carbon 6Fattie

Tester: Stephen Haynes Age: 39 Height: 5’11” Weight: 210 lbs Inseam: 30” If acceptance into our popular culture is predicated on a product or brands’ appearance in a Wal-Mart store, then 27plus as a wheel size has arrived. I noted this arrival on a recent trip to the purveyor of all things cheap and excessive ...


Review: Trek Fuel EX 7 29

Review: Trek Fuel EX 7 29

Tester: Scott Williams Age: 31 Height: 5’10” Weight: 170 lbs. Inseam: 32” Trek upped the ante once more for the current Fuel EX lineup, looking to fulfill the one bike to rule them all prophecy. Deciding to step back from the prior generation’s long-legged cross-country-esque geometry, the new Fuel EX became more trail aggressive and ...


Review: Fuji Rakan 29 3.7

Review: Fuji Rakan 29 3.7

Tester: Jon Pratt Age: 46 Height: 5’10.5” Weight: 190 lbs. Inseam: 31” The Fuji Rakan moves deeper into trail bike territory for 2017. It shares the same frame as the 2016 model, but beefs up with sturdier wheels, tires and suspension. This tacks on a bit of weight but creates a bike designed to tackle ...


Review: Proudfoot Primed

Review: Proudfoot Primed

Tester: Helena Kotala Age: 27 Weight: 127 lbs. Height: 5’3” Inseam: 29” I’ve never ridden a bike that has elicited more stares, compliments and questions than the Proudfoot Primed, a steel full-suspension trail rig from a small made-to-order bike building operation in Golden, Colorado. Aside from the eye-catching purple powdercoat (the official color is penstemon, ...


Review: Kona Unit

Review: Kona Unit

Tester: Adam Newman Age: 36 Height: 6’ 1” Weight: Gaining Inseam: 33” It’s steel. It has wheels. It rides like a bike. To be honest, I’m not really sure what I’m supposed to say? I mean, a rigid singlespeed is about as bare bones as you can get, and you’ve probably already decided if riding ...


Review: Framed Wolftrax Alloy Compact

Review: Framed Wolftrax Alloy Compact

Tester: Eric McKeegan/Oona McKeegan  Kids today. Back when I was knee-high to a grasshopper, kids’ bikes had 20 inch wheels, steel frames and no gears. Also, no helmets. But things change, and in this case, for the better. This is a full-fledged, 24 inch-wheeled, adventure-ready fat bike for kids and short-statured adults, not a bike-shaped-object ...


First Impression: Trek Roscoe 8

First Impression: Trek Roscoe 8

The trail hardtail is the cockroach of bicycle kingdom: tough to kill. Just when I thought full-suspension was set to crush the venerable beasties, plus tires and modern trail geometry came along and breathed new life into the hardtail category. In fact, Trek offers two trail hardtails: the 29-plus Stache at the high end and ...


First Impression: Surly Karate Monkey 27plus

First Impression: Surly Karate Monkey 27plus

The Surly Karate Monkey is an iconic hardtail that helped popularize 29er wheels back in the early 2000s. It remained unchanged for 14 years, until 2016, when Surly launched an update to the frame that brought it into modern times. With longer, lower, slacker geometry, 27plus compatibility, internal dropper post routing and a frame that’s designed ...


Review: 2017 Pivot LES

Review: 2017 Pivot LES

Tester: Scott Williams Age: 31 Height: 5’10” Weight: 175 lbs. Inseam: 32” When the Pivot LES first stormed bike shop floors in 2012, it was obvious Chris Cocalis of Pivot Cycles was ahead of the curve offering a hardtail with a short chainstay and slack, for cross-country standards, 69.5 degree head angle with a 100mm ...


First Impression: Transition Throttle

First Impression: Transition Throttle

If you want my opinion, and maybe you do if you’re reading this, Transition’s new 27.5-inch carbon hardtail has relegated all other bikes in this hardtail round-up. Hands down, I won the review bike lottery. Since arriving at the Dirt Rag Headquarters, the Transition Throttle passed through various staff members hands for a quick rip here ...


First Impression: Kona Honzo DL

First Impression: Kona Honzo DL

Some may argue that the Kona Honzo was the first of its kind, taking the standard XC hardtail and turning it into an all-mountain machine by mimicking the geometry of popular full-suspension bikes. In 2012, Kona released the first version of the Honzo, and since then the idea of a trail-geometry hardtail has flourished in ...


Review: Trek Farley EX 9.8

Review: Trek Farley EX 9.8

Tester: Jon Pratt Age: 46 Height: 5’10.5” Weight: 190 lbs. Inseam: 31” We’re all used to seeing hybrid bikes out around town or on the local rails-to-trails paths, but the Farley EX 9.8 is a whole new style of hybrid. With the Farley EX, Trek is establishing a platform that combines the high-performance characteristics of ...


Review: 2018 Cannondale Trigger 3

Review: 2018 Cannondale Trigger 3

Tester: Evan Gross Age: 30 Weight: 185 lbs. Height: 6’ 2” Inseam: 36.5” A different Trigger by the same name … again. While the last several generations of Trigger have been fussy to set up, largely misunderstood and plagued by swingarm cracks, the 2018 hopes to solve many of these issues by reverting to a ...


Review: Carver Ti All-Road

Review: Carver Ti All-Road

Tester: Karl Rosengarth Age: 59 Height: 5’10” Weight: 150 lbs. Inseam: 32” Carver’s Ti All-Road is a mountain biker’s road bike. With a design aimed at mixed- surface comfort and stability, the All-Road stands ready for rough road rambles, gravel grinds and singletrack shortcuts. The Bike Built from 3/2.5 titanium alloy, the All-Road comes with ...


Review: Trek Roscoe 8

Review: Trek Roscoe 8

Tester: Karl Rosengarth Age: 59 Weight: 150 lbs. Height: 5’10” Inseam: 32” The Bike The Roscoe checks key trail-bike boxes with its relaxed head angle, short chainstays, wide (740 mm) bars and a short (60 mm) stem. Factor in the de rigueur dropper post and RockShox’s capable-yet-affordable Judy Silver 120 mm fork, and the Roscoe ...


Review: Marin Wolf Ridge 8

Review: Marin Wolf Ridge 8

Tester: Eric McKeegan Age: 43 Height: 5’11” Weight: 165 lbs. Inseam: 32” Not since the launch of Kona’s Magic Link bikes (R.I.P) has there been a bike that creates such a sudden, visceral and polarized response. The Wolf Ridge is an ungainly looking conundrum of a bike, drawing questions of motorization and general confusion about ...


Review: Surly Big Fat Dummy

Review: Surly Big Fat Dummy

Name: Evan Gross Age: 30 Weight: 187 lbs. Height: 6’2” Inseam: 36” Introduced in late 2016, the Big Fat Dummy is not just a Big Dummy (Surly’s original 26-inch wheeled longtail cargo bike) with fat tires, though the name makes it seem as such. But there’s a lot more than just fat tires that separate ...


Review: Oddity Cycles Punk Rock Jazz

Review: Oddity Cycles Punk Rock Jazz

Tester: Stephen Haynes Age: 39 Height: 5’11” Weight: 200 lbs. Inseam: 30” A thought experiment, if you’ll indulge me. Try to picture the bike you learned to ride on. Think about the memory of that bike, just the bike; do you remember it? Chances are good that you do, and for most of you, that ...


The Kona Satori returns – a mid-travel 29er trail bike for the masses

The Kona Satori returns – a mid-travel 29er trail bike for the masses

  Remember Kona’s first 29er trail bike, the 130 mm Satori? Five years ago it was a solid first effort, with 68/74 head/seat angles, just over 17″ chainstays, and a long reach for the time. When the Process 111 hit the market, the Satori disappeared. Or maybe it disappeared before the 111? Does it really ...


Review: Kona Big Honzo DL

Review: Kona Big Honzo DL

Tester: Brett Rothmeyer Age: 40 Weight: 165 lbs. Height: 6’1” Inseam: 32″ Dropping into the first section of fast and flowy singletrack on the Big Honzo DL was like plugging a Les Paul into a Marshall stack and hitting an open A chord. We are not talking a Roy Orbison open A; we are talking ...


Review: Niner SIR 9

Review: Niner SIR 9

Tester: Scott Williams Age: 31 Height: 5’10” Weight: 175 lbs. Inseam: 32” In early 2017, the SIR 9 had vanished from Niner’s website, shocking and confusing more than a few fans of this steel-framed classic. It wasn’t until June that Niner officially released its newly revamped SIR 9, and with the dust settled, it was ...


Review: Falconer Custom

Review: Falconer Custom

Tester: Eric McKeegan Age: 43 Height: 5’11” Weight: 165 lbs. Inseam: 32” According to the advice from modern, data-driven marketing gurus, a business needs an expensive, responsive website with accurate prices. Social media posts need to be constant. And of course, local competition should be kept to a minimum. Mr. Cameron Falconer doesn’t seem to ...


Trek Full Stache – 29plus – full-sus

Trek Full Stache – 29plus – full-sus

Trek’s Stache 29plus hardtail has opened many eyes to the wonderful weirdness of 29plus tires. Ever since the introduction of the SE4/XR4 29×3 tire in the Fall of 2017 I’ve been wondering if there might be a bike designed around the capabilities of this tire. I stopped wondering a few weeks ago when this weird ...


Win a Pivot Cycles Mach 6 Aluminum

Win a Pivot Cycles Mach 6 Aluminum

This contest has ended. Congratulations to the winner: Latika, Young of Tallahassee, FL! Subscribe to Dirt Rag Magazine and sign up for our weekly newsletter so you don’t miss a chance to win our next bike giveaway. Pivot Cycles has teamed up with us to give one lucky winner a Mach 6 Aluminum Race XT Bike! Enter ...


Review: BMC Speedfox 01. KR

Review: BMC Speedfox 01. KR

Name: Brett Rothmeyer Age: 40 Weight: 165 lbs. Height: 6’1” Inseam: 32” The Speedfox 01 by BMC is touted as the latest in a long line of proclaimed, “quiver killers.” Labeled as a trail bike, the Speedfox looks to straddle the line between fun and performance, cross-country and trail. Falling into the medium travel category ...


Bike Review: Canyon Strive CF 7.0

Bike Review: Canyon Strive CF 7.0

Tester: Eric McKeegan Age: 44 Height: 5’11” Weight: 165 lbs. Inseam: 32” Canyon has made its long-awaited entry into the U.S. market. One of the biggest consumer-direct brands in Europe, the looming threat of Canyon has been touted as the best thing ever for consumers and the worst thing ever for established brands and their ...


Pivot Firebird 29 – First Ride

Pivot Firebird 29 – First Ride

Pivot invited us out to ride the new Trail 429 in Moab last month in Moab. The assembled media had a blast, but when Pivot’s head honcho, Chris Cocalis unexpectedly wheeled out a this new Firebird 29 no one asked to stay on the Trail 429 for the next day’s ride. The Firebird 29 is Pivot’s answer ...


A Visit with Engin Cycles

A Visit with Engin Cycles

Germantown Avenue seems like a comparatively quiet street when considering the rest of Philadelphia. Trolley tracks and cobbled paths remain from the years gone by, there is a lot that houses a food truck and what appears to be a small farmers market. It’s June in Philadelphia, and the summer heat is already reducing movement ...


New Releases From Santa Cruz and Juliana

New Releases From Santa Cruz and Juliana

Perhaps you have heard rumblings around your local shops about what new Santa Cruz bikes were on their way. There had been rumors and guesses by many as to just what exactly was coming. Well, the day has come and both the Bronson and 5010 have gotten makeovers, as well have the Roubion and the Furtado from ...


First Rides – Santa Cruz Bronson and 5010

First Rides – Santa Cruz Bronson and 5010

We loaded the van a few weeks ago, and headed down to Brevard, NC to meet up with a couple of blokes from Santa Cruz and ride a pair of new bikes, the Bronson and 5010. The Bike Farm was our base camp and guide, with support from the Hub bike shop. We rode in the ...


Press Release: Kona unveils new 2019 Process G2 lineup

Press Release: Kona unveils new 2019 Process G2 lineup

Ah, late summer, the early winter of the bike industry, when companies take stock in what they did over the past 12 months, what worked and didn’t. This is the time when new bikes are unveiled, old bikes are rehashed, and, hopefully, poorly designed models are left for people to resell on the internet for ...


Liv Cycling announces new Intrigue series

Liv Cycling announces new Intrigue series

Woman-specific designs have long had a bad rap as being shrinked-and-pinked or more commonly, shrinked-and-stinked—charging the same amount of money for a bike with lesser quality components. Many women had different body geometries than most men, with a lower center of gravity, narrower shoulders, and a different transference of power based on our builds. Buying ...


Trek releases upgrades to entry-level Marlin and Marlin WSD lines

Trek releases upgrades to entry-level Marlin and Marlin WSD lines

Trek has released their updated Marlin, their entry level bikes that come in both “standard” and as a “women specific design” (WSD). Between the two model lines, not much is different. The smallest sizes (13.5″ and 15.5″) of the WSD models have a more sloped top tube for standover clearance compared to the slight slope ...


Niner Bikes delivers with the new flat bar RLT 9 Apex

Niner Bikes delivers with the new flat bar RLT 9 Apex

Most long-time bike nerds have that bike. The Frankenstein Monster, built up maybe over a long time or maybe just put together in one frustrated afternoon, to hopefully satisfy that need. The road bike is too aero but the mountain bike is too slow. There has to be a bike that can get to work ...


Strider’s new balance bike teeters Carbon Fiber fence

Strider’s new balance bike teeters Carbon Fiber fence

…between ridiculous and awesome! Are you tired of waiting for your toddler at the top of a climb? Do you find yourself taking out unnecessary “extra” bolts and other heavy componentry so that your three-year-old can hold more momentum on the flats? Has your child learned how to ride a pedal bike but their downright ...


Even more sweet finds at Interbike, Pt. 3 – Dakine, Rivendell and Green Guru product

Even more sweet finds at Interbike, Pt. 3 – Dakine, Rivendell and Green Guru product

Dakine has a sick new gravity line called Thrillium, with their partnership with Graham Agissiz and Team Aggy, bringing a very specific “wolf” vibe, which I am not opposed to, into both their men’s and women’s cuts. They have new knee pads and gloves, and their baggies have been redesigned to offer a ton of ...


Ibis launches new DV9 carbon hardtail

Ibis launches new DV9 carbon hardtail

On Monday, Ibis launched its newest carbon hardtail, the DV9. Inspired by Lili Heim, the varsity XC racing high school daughter of Ibis co-owner and CEO Hans Heim, this bike is designed to be fun, fast, and affordable. With 67.4° travel on a 120mm fork (68.5° on a 100mm fork), the geometry is slacker than ...


The All New Habit Trail Bike From Cannondale

The All New Habit Trail Bike From Cannondale

The new Cannondale Habit is equipped with all the must-haves of today’s trail bike – slack and capable geometry, 130mm of suspension travel, and of course 29” wheels as well as the obligatory “flip-chip” to convert to 27.5+” wheels if so desired. Big grippy tires, properly wide bars, powerful brakes, and a dropper post can ...


Review: Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt Carbon 70

Review: Rocky Mountain Thunderbolt Carbon 70

Editor’s note: This review was originally published in issue 206 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Want to see more? Subscribe today at dirtragmag.com/subscribe to catch issue 208, coming soon! Price: $5,999 Sizes: XS, S, M, L (tested), XL Online: www.bikes.com Tester: Brett Rothmeyer Age: 40 Weight: 165 lbs. Height: 6’1” Inseam: 32” Reach: 17.9” Stack: 24.0” Top ...


Review: Santa Cruz 5010 X01

Review: Santa Cruz 5010 X01

Editor’s note: This review originally appeared in issue 206 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe now at dirtragmag.com/subscribe to catch issue 208, coming real soon.  Name: Eric McKeegan Age: 44 Weight: 165 lbs. Height: 5’ 11” Inseam: 32” Price: $6,799, $7,999 with carbon wheels Sizes: XS, S, M, L, (tested) XL Online: ...


Philly Bike Expo 2018

Philly Bike Expo 2018

OK, so now that I’ve gotten the Pittsburgh tragedy out in the open, let’s move on to the PHILLY BIKE EXPO! Maurice (Dirt Rag’s publisher and mastermind) and I drove into Philly with a few bikes in tow, plus some old copies of Dirt Rag to hand out, socks, pint glasses, hats, t-shirts, frame bags ...


Kona Wozo: Cold Smoke

Kona Wozo: Cold Smoke

Ahh, November. Depending on where you live, you may still have hard-packed— dare I say “dusty”— trails, or you may already be frolicking in a winter wonderland. Here in the mid-Atlantic, we are sludging through the awkward adolescent season of late autumn, where the trails are slick with wet leaves, roots, and rocks, and for ...


Transition Throttle Review

Transition Throttle Review

Editors note: From the pages of issue 203 we take a look at the Transition Throttle. Review bikes our like our children and we try not to pick favorites but everyone on staff who saddled up on the Throttle had the same response ‘Dang this thing is fun!’  If you enjoy this review and others ...


Review: Specialized Enduro Coil 29

Review: Specialized Enduro Coil 29

Editor’s note: This review originally appeared in issue 207 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe now at dirtragmag.com/subscribe to catch issue 209, coming real soon.  Tester: A.J. Collins Age: 40 Height: 5’10” Weight: 165 lbs. Inseam: 31” Price: $5,800 Sizes: S, M, L (tested), XL Online: specialized.com Reach: 18.2” Stack: 24.4” Top ...


Underground Bike Works Revival 27.5 Plus

Underground Bike Works Revival 27.5 Plus

Editors note: This review originally appeared in Issue #206.  Tester: Stephen Haynes Age: 40 Height: 6’0” Weight: 210 lbs. Inseam: 30 in. Price: $6,950 Sizes: S, M, L (tested), XL Online: undergroundbikeworks.com Reach: 17.5” Stack: 24.2” Top Tube: 25.2” Head Tube: 67.5° Seat Tube: 72.5° BB Height: 12” Chainstays: 17.1” Weight: 24lbs. w/o pedals, specs ...


Santa Cruz Highball

Santa Cruz Highball

Santa Cruz Highball XX1 Price: $7,999 Sizes: S, M, L (tested), XL Online: santacruzbicycles.com Tester: Scott Williams Age: 32 Weight: 170 lbs. Height: 5’ 11” Inseam: 32.5” Reach: 17.7” Stack: 24.2” Top Tube: 25.1” Head Tube: 69.5° Seat Tube: 73° BB Height: 12.4” Chainstays: 16.8” Weight: 20 lbs. (with dropper) Long known as a trail ...


Niner JET 9 RDO

Niner JET 9 RDO

Niner JET 9 RDO 3-Star GX Eagle Price: $5,400 Sizes: XS, S, M, L (Tested), XL Online: ninerbikes.com Tester: Brett Rothmeyer Age: 40 Weight: 165, lbs. Height: 6’-1” Inseam: 32” Reach: 17.4” Stack: 24.7” Top Tube: 24.5” Head Tube: 67° Seat Tube: 74° BB Height: 13.4” Chainstays: 17.1” Weight: 28.5 lbs. “Honesty is the best ...


Interbike First Look: Giant AnyRoad

Interbike First Look: Giant AnyRoad

By Adam Newman We’re excited to see more bikes coming around for the kind of riding we love the most: rambling adventures from the city to the mountains. The Giant AnyRoad might not have an innovative name, but the design is perfect for a huge segment of the bike-riding market. The aluminum frame offers a ...


Review: Co-Motion Divide

Review: Co-Motion Divide

The Co-Motion Divide’s rugged looking frame is hand-built in Oregon using oversized Reynolds 725 chromoly tubing. Co-Motion’s tandem expertise is evident in the massive chainstays and the 40-spoke wheels, built using DT-Swiss 540 tandem hubs (with 145mm rear spacing for a dishless wheel) and Velocity Cliffhanger rims. The stout 44 mm-diameter head tube on the ...


Review: 2013 Salsa Fargo 2

Review: 2013 Salsa Fargo 2

Rather than a beefed-up touring bike like the Co-Motion Divide we reviewed last week, the Fargo 2 is actually a drop-bar mountain bike, with a lighter compact frame, 2×10 drivetrain, tubeless wheels, and slacker geometry than the Co-Motion. A tall, 44mm head tube means a higher handlebar for comfort off-road, and suspension-corrected geometry allows a ...


Review: Specialized Crosstrail Sport Disc

Review: Specialized Crosstrail Sport Disc

The Crosstrail formula is simple: aluminum frame with generous tire clearance plus rack and fender mounts, 60mm-travel SR Suntour NEXi suspension fork, a 3×9 drivetrain, Tektro Draco hydraulic disc brakes, and wheels and tires on the heavy-duty end of the road spectrum. This package delivers a highly versatile bike that can be used for commuting, ...


Review: Kona Rove

Review: Kona Rove

Kona designed the Rove as a versatile machine, mixing the practicality of its commuter and touring models with the fit and geometry of its cyclocross heritage. The result is a bike that feels responsive, but still delivers versatility that will keep you rolling all year. It seems rim vs. disc brakes has superseded Campagnolo vs. ...


Review: Trek CrossRip

Review: Trek CrossRip

Trek’s CrossRip is part of the Urban Utility line. Two models are offered, the basic Crossrip and the upgraded Elite. Both are spec’d with a drop bar for versatility and comfort, and differ only in the parts package. The frame is made from Trek’s 100 series Alpha aluminum, with a Bontrager Satellite carbon fork. The ...


Review: Raleigh Misceo Trail 2.0

Review: Raleigh Misceo Trail 2.0

Misceo is a Latin verb that means “to mix or blend.” The idea behind the Raleigh Misceo Trail 2.0—a flat-bar, 700c bike decked out with disc brakes and a suspension fork—is to blend the performance and versatility of a mountain bike with the comfort and street-friendliness of a hybrid. This machine is designed to tackle ...


Review: Trek Domane 4.5

Review: Trek Domane 4.5

While many brands have introduced “endurance” road bikes over the last few years, few have taken the idea to quite the extreme as Trek. The Domane was developed with considerable input from Swiss pro cyclist Fabian Cancellara, who is known for his steam-engine riding style, using his massive power output to crush cobblestones in the ...


Review: Cannondale Quick CX 3

Review: Cannondale Quick CX 3

It’s a warm morning. The sun’s out and spring has sprung. I’m stepping out of my back door with Cannondale’s Quick CX 3 ready to start the 11-mile commute to the office. My neighbor waves “good morning,” and it promises to be a great day for a ride. My commute isn’t difficult. There aren’t many ...


Review: Jamis Quest

Review: Jamis Quest

Jamis, continuing on even after steel road bikes seem to have fallen out of favor. In fact, this 2013 model marks the 25th anniversary of the Quest name. Built with an oversize Reynolds 631 tubeset paired with a full carbon fork, this is a thoroughly modern take on the classic steel road bike. Jamis makes ...


This Just In: Six $1,000 Bikes for Work and Play

This Just In: Six $1,000 Bikes for Work and Play

The new year draws near, and for the first issue of 2015, we’ve rounded up six bike in the $1,000 range as a representative sample at this popular price point. We’ve found it to be common dollar amount for a first “good” bike, or adding a second bike (or third or fourth, etcetera) to the ...


First Impression: Raleigh Clubman Disc

First Impression: Raleigh Clubman Disc

Editor’s note: Here at Bicycle Times we are as mindful of price as you are. So we gathered together a group of six very diverse bikes to showcase what you can find right now at the $1,000 price point. See our introduction here. Way back in issue #2, I reviewed the Raleigh Clubman (with rim ...


Field Tested: Velo Orange Camargue

Field Tested: Velo Orange Camargue

The Camargue from Velo Orange is a bike designed to extend the ride beyond where the pavement ends. Named after an ancient French horse breed, the Camargue is as rugged as its wetland-dwelling namesake and capable of taking you on adventures both near and far and in a style normally reserved for bikes with much ...


Field Tested: Jamis Renegade Elite

Field Tested: Jamis Renegade Elite

  “Adventure” is all the rage these days, but the scope definition and scope of these adventures varies greatly from source to source. In this case, Jamis defines adventure with a heavy dose of performance and a side of versatility for their new go-anywhere, do-anything road bike. The highly engineered Renegade joins a stable of ...


SRAM expands 1×11 drivetrain to include gravel, road, adventure and more

SRAM expands 1×11 drivetrain to include gravel, road, adventure and more

What would you say if someone took your favorite bike, swapped out your go-to compact gearing or reliable triple crankset, and installed a single chainring with a ginormous 11-speed cassette? Then, to pour salt into the wound, told you to climb nearly 3,000 feet of elevation on California’s central coast? On nearly 15 miles of ...


Trek updates Farley fat bike to be bigger, faster

Trek updates Farley fat bike to be bigger, faster

As the fat bike market matures it is inevitably diversifying into specific product categories. Just as mountain bikes now have categories for downhill, cross country or trail riding, fat bike riders are realizing one size does not fit all. The Farley model has been hugely popular for Trek, but it was being pulled in two ...


Kona adds some sweet road, cross and adventure bikes for 2016

Kona adds some sweet road, cross and adventure bikes for 2016

Kona has been expanding away from its mountain bike background lately, and the sneak peak we got on the 2016 models takes things to the next level. Here are the four models that stood out the most to me. Private Jake – $2,000 An all new aluminum frame offers modern updates like front and rear thru-axles, ...


First ride on the new 2016 Salsa bikes

First ride on the new 2016 Salsa bikes

Deadwood Somewhat surprising is this 29plus touring bike that Salsa says will be produced in somewhat limited numbers. More evolutionary than revolutionary, it’s kind of like what you’d expect to get if a Fargo and a Mukluk enjoyed a little too much bourbon around the campfire before snuggling into a sleeping bag together. It’s built ...


Review: Trek 920 Disc

Review: Trek 920 Disc

From Issue #37 Bicycle touring has changed a lot over the past few years, and while riders once rejoiced for a smooth ribbon of asphalt, a rough and rocky road is now de rigueur. Right on the Trek website you see signs of this preference as the new 920 Disc is classified under the banner ...


Review: Raleigh Grand Prix

Review: Raleigh Grand Prix

This Raleigh with the classic name may in fact be the sleeper bike of 2015. At first glance, it’s a fairly conventional steel road bike but in fact it has a secret identity as a travel bike. At the heart of the Reynolds 520 butted chromoly steel frame is the Ritchey Break-Away system. Look closely and you’ll notice the double ...


Everything you ever wanted to know about titanium

Everything you ever wanted to know about titanium

Originally published in Bicycle Times Issue #31 OF BIRDS AND BIKES Titanium burst onto the scene in the 1950s in military aerospace applications. Favorable ratios of strength, durability and toughness to weight—along with its corrosion resistance and high temperature capabilities—made titanium the material of choice in airframes and aerospace hydraulic systems. The first bird to ...


Review: Bianchi Volpe Disc and Zurigo Disc

Review: Bianchi Volpe Disc and Zurigo Disc

Testers: Eric Mckeegan and Jon Pratt shared this back-to-back review in Bicycle Times Issue #38 Bianchi has been at the bike game for a long, long time. One hundred thirty years to be exact. Almost as old is Bianchi’s signature celeste green, perhaps the most recognizable color in cycling. While much of Bianchi’s history revolves around ...


Rawland unveils two new adventure bikes

Rawland unveils two new adventure bikes

Rawland Cycles has been filling a niche in the bike industry for a decade now as a small brand that produces versatile models that don’t fit neatly into any particular category. “There’s this awesome new zone where I think the fun is,” said Rawland’s Creative Director and VP, Jeremy Spencer. If your idea of fun is getting off ...


First Impression: Soma Wolverine

First Impression: Soma Wolverine

The original inspiration for Soma’s Wolverine was “monster cross,” but this frame’s geometry, versatility and even the screaming orange means you shouldn’t save it for just one, specific purpose. This type of bike is becoming more and more common, and we’re out to discover what sets this beast apart. Soma currently sells its Wolverine as a ...


Review: Marin Four Corners

Review: Marin Four Corners

This year is Marin Bikes’ 30th anniversary, and it marks the introduction of an all-new “utilitour” model, the Four Corners. The neutral gray steel frame gives the bike a timeless look, while disc brakes, wide tire clearance and an upright riding position keep pace with cyclists’ expectations for adventure touring and bikepacking.


Review: Marin Pine Mountain 1

Review: Marin Pine Mountain 1

Marin reintroduced this new Pine Mountain to celebrate its 30th anniversary and it harkens back to the early days of mountain biking, when exploration and adventure were coded into the DNA of the then-emerging sport. However, this is not a throwback reproduction bike. Rather, Marin produced an adventure-ready rig with a modern geometry and plus-sized ...


Frostbike ’18: Surly launches Midnight Special steel road bike

Frostbike ’18: Surly launches Midnight Special steel road bike

Surly has been coming out with a lot of new stuff lately, from the Pack Rat front-loader touring bike to the redesigned Pugsley fat bike. Here at Frostbike in Minneapolis, the brand launched yet another brand new bike, the Midnight Special. The folks at Surly describe the Midnight Special as a bike that can ride ...


Bombtrack Beyond 1

Bombtrack Beyond 1

Bombtrack Beyond 1 Price: $2,000 Sizes: XS, S, M, L (tested), XL Online: bombtrack.com Tester: Stephen Haynes Age: 41 Height: 5’11” Weight: 210 lbs. Inseam: 30 in. Price: $2,000 Sizes: XS, S, M, L (tested), XL Online: bombtrack.com Reach: 15.5” Stack: 25” Top Tube: 23.2” Head Tube: 7” BB Height: 11.5” Chainstays: 18” Weight: 27.5 ...


Sea Otter Sizzlers

Sea Otter Sizzlers

Industry events and expos can be a brutal overloading of the senses. So many products and bikes and handshakes and cold beverages, it can be difficult to decipher what is what. Amongst the widgets and doodads, the big travel future bikes, there are the diamonds in the rough. While shuffling from booth to booth and ...


Salsa Cutthroat

Salsa Cutthroat

Salsa Cutthroat Apex 1 Price: $2,900 Sizes: S, M, L (tested), XL Online: salsacycles.com Tester: Scott Williams Age: 33 Weight: 170 lbs. Height: 5’ 11” Inseam: 32.5” Reach: 15.1” Stack: 25.4” Top Tube: 22.8” Head Tube: 71° Seat Tube: 73° BB Drop: 2.8” Chainstays: 17.5” Weight: 23.9 lbs.without pedals, specs based on size tested “During ...


In print: Be Kind Rewind – Grove Innovations Hard Core

In print: Be Kind Rewind – Grove Innovations Hard Core

Editor’s note: This article originally appeared in issue 209 of Dirt Rag Magazine, as part of an ongoing column by Martin Kozaczek called Be Kind Rewind. Like what you see? Subscribe now at dirtragmag.com/subscribe to catch issue 211, coming real soon.  by Martin Kozaczek Much like Preston Tucker and the Studebaker brothers, the legacy of ...


Matt’s Custom Crust Bike

Matt’s Custom Crust Bike

Crust Bikes custom frame Price: $1,475 for frame, estimate $4,000 complete Online: crustbikes.com Tester: Carolyne Whelan Age: 36 Weight: 143 lbs. Height: 5’ 5.5” Inseam: 32” Reach: 16.2” Stack: 24.4” Top Tube: 22.8” Head Tube: 63° Seat Tube: 74° BB Drop: 1.8” Chainstays: 16.5” Weight: 28.1 lbs. without pedals, specs based on size tested It’s ...


Pivot Mach 4 SL – First Ride

Pivot Mach 4 SL – First Ride

When the 429 SL first debuted as Pivot’s ultimate World Cup-caliber race weapon it was long, low and slack, at least for its time. Signaling a change to the new era Pivot’s cross-country bike is now named the Mach 4 SL providing 100mm of a renowned dw-link suspension paired with either a 100-120mm travel fork. ...


The All-New Specialized Fuse

The All-New Specialized Fuse

Specialized has redesigned the Fuse for 2019. The hardtail is up to date with all-new aggressive lines. Think of the Fuse as a younger sibling to the Stumpjumper, equally capable of attacking the trail without rear suspension and arguably a more versatile machine. The Fuse will be offered in three models, The Expert (seen here) ...


The All New Pivot Vault

The All New Pivot Vault

Today, Pivot Cycles introduces the new Vault – a bike where massive tire clearance, pro-caliber power transfer, and ride-tuned frame compliance come together for the fastest thing to ever hit backcountry roads. Gravel, road, or cross, the all-new Vault checks all the boxes with clearance for 700x45c and 650bX47c tires, tight 420mm seatstays, compatibility with ...


GT Force Carbon Expert

GT Force Carbon Expert

Tester: Stephen Haynes Age: 41 Height: 5’11” Weight: 200 lbs. Inseam: 30” Price: $4,200 Sizes: XS, S, M, L (tested), XL Online: gtbicycles.com >Reach: Low 18.3” Stack: Low 23.8” Top Tube: Low 24.4” Head Angle: Low 65° BB Height: Low 11.6” Chainstays: Low 17.1” Weight: 32 lbs w/o pedals, specs based on size tested in ...


First Impressions: Juliana’s new Maverick

First Impressions: Juliana’s new Maverick

Juliana Maverick $43oo-$8300 depending on build A few weeks ago, Dirt Rag had the opportunity to check out the new Maverick from Juliana on the trails of Buena Vista, Colorado (a post about the town and trails is coming soon). It had been a while since I rode out West, with those long, steep rock ...


New Bikes from Santa Cruz and Juliana

New Bikes from Santa Cruz and Juliana

A few weeks ago Dirt Rag was lucky enough to check out the new Maverick from Juliana. You can read all about it here. Santa Cruz, Juliana’s parent (or maybe big brother) company, also released a new bike: the 2nd generation Hightower. Both bikes are made for that grey space between cross country and gravity ...


A Tale of Two Bicis, Part Deux

A Tale of Two Bicis, Part Deux

Editor’s note: A Tale of Two Bicis (part one) was published in the current issue of Dirt Rag Magazine, #211. Like what you see? To keep up with our print content, be sure to subscribe today so you don’t miss an issue. Can a sudden injection of modern bike technology make you a better rider? ...


In Print: Trek Slash 8

In Print: Trek Slash 8

Editor’s Note: This review originally appeared in issue 210 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe now to catch issue 212, flying into mailboxes soon. by Zach White 2019 Trek Slash 8 review Price: $3680 Sizes 15.5, 17.5, 18.5, 19.5, 21.5 (tested) Online: trekbikes.com Tester: Zach White Age: 45 Weight: 195 lbs. Height: ...


In Print: Mojo HD4

In Print: Mojo HD4

Editor’s Note: This feature first appeared in issue 210 of our print edition of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe today to catch issue 212, in production now and soon to set sail. Ibis Mojo HD4 Price: $6,999 Sizes: S, M, L (tested), XL Online: ibiscycles.com Tester: Brett Rothmeyer Age: 41 Weight: 170 ...


In Print: Be Kind Rewind — 1990 Doug Bradbury Manitou

In Print: Be Kind Rewind — 1990 Doug Bradbury Manitou

Editor’s Note: This feature first appeared in issue 210 of our print edition of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe today to catch issue 212, in production now and soon to set sail. Be Kind Rewind 1990 Doug Bradbury Manitou Mountain biking is a unique sport in several ways, different in its culture ...


LIV Intrigue Advanced 1

LIV Intrigue Advanced 1

LIV Intrigue Advanced 1 Price: $5,565 Sizes: XS, S, M (tested), L Online: liv-cycling.com Tester: Carolyne Whelan Age: 36 Weight: 145 lbs. Height: 5’ 5.5” Inseam: 32” Reach: 17” Stack: 23.1” Top Tube: 23.4” Head Tube: 66.5° Seat Tube: 74.5° BB Height: 14” BB Drop: .6” Chainstays: 17.2” Weight: 27.9 lbs. without pedals, specs based ...


Santa Cruz Chameleon

Santa Cruz Chameleon

By Scott Williams INTRO Ripping through singletrack on a singlespeed is where I find my ultimate happy place, but each year, the niche I connect with continues to sink further into the depths of a forgotten past. From a business perspective, I fully get it, but that doesn’t mean I like it. The weight difference ...


Scott Ransom 910 Bike

Scott Ransom 910 Bike

By Scott Williams As an avid snowboarder in the winter months, charging down the mountain on two wheels in summer was a natural progression. It’s the same set of teary eyes trying to weave through the forest and somehow putting the blindfold over the part of your brain that detects fear, the amygdala. Each year, ...


First Impressions: 2020 Rocky Mountain Slayer 

First Impressions: 2020 Rocky Mountain Slayer 

by Zach White If you’re a Rocky Mountain fan, and/or a fan of the Godfather of freeriding, Wade Simmons, you may have caught what appeared to be a marketing move a couple of years back, as the Canadian company hyped up a custom bike made specifically for the living legend. Technically, the Pipe Dream introduced ...


The New Santa Cruz Tallboy

The New Santa Cruz Tallboy

The latest and perhaps the most anticipated (at least on this side of the country) update to Santa Cruz’s line up is the Tallboy. The Tallboy entered the scene back in 2009 as the flagship cross-country bike for Santa Cruz. What began as a short travel 29er, the Tallboy has evolved over the last decade ...


New Liv Pique 29 lineup is live, complete with the Fox Live Valve

New Liv Pique 29 lineup is live, complete with the Fox Live Valve

Liv may have cracked the code on how to sell a women-specific mountain bike. While some other brands fuss about paint color and handlebar length (both important!), Liv was taking measurements on how women ride bikes: The average ranges of our body dimensions (inseam versus torso length, for instance), where our power comes from, how ...


Be Kind Rewind: Fat Chance Team Comp

Be Kind Rewind: Fat Chance Team Comp

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in issue 211 of Dirt Rag Magazine. Like what you see? Subscribe now to catch the last issue of the year, and stop by your local bike shop to pick up issue 212, hot off the presses. by Martin Kozaczek You’d be hard-pressed to throw a rock into the ...


Introducing the Ibis Ripmo AF

Introducing the Ibis Ripmo AF

Ibis has just added an aluminum option to their line up by way of the Ripmo AF and it is available as of today. Mimicking the lines and attitude of its carbon sibling, the AF looks to get riders on a big mountain killer at a much lower price. Starting as a complete for $2,999 ...


REEB Dikyelous2 Single Speed

REEB Dikyelous2 Single Speed

Intro Craft beer and mountain biking go hand in hand. Even if you fall on the nonalcoholic drinker side of the equation, the correlation between the two is evident. It’s the post-ride happy hour, mid-ride vista paired with a trail “soda” or hell, I’ve even witnessed cold ones stored in racers’ aid station bags. Beer ...


Ibis releases Mojo HD5 featuring Traction Tune

Ibis releases Mojo HD5 featuring Traction Tune

It has been a busy season for Ibis and they have just added a new member to the lineup with the Mojo HD5. The HD5 builds on what the HD4 started, a 27.5 enduro bike made for tackling the toughest of tracks. Along with the HD5 comes Traction Tune Suspension. Ibis’ full-suspension models use the ...


Specialized Stumpjumper ST Comp Alloy 29

Specialized Stumpjumper ST Comp Alloy 29

INTRO Back in ‘81 when the first Specialized Stumpjumper hit the floors of shops, it sported a rigid fork, cantilever brakes, 26-inch wheels and a high-post. Today, while the Stumpjumper name is consistent, the bike itself has changed a lot over the decades. Available in three modes of rowdiness with options in carbon or aluminum ...


Olivetti Thunderpig Bike

Olivetti Thunderpig Bike

Let us begin with a bit of backstory on the Olivetti Thunder Pig. Leading up to the 2018 NAHBS event, (that’s the North American Handmade Bicycle Show for those of you not hip to the acronym) I scoured the list of builders looking for people to interview in the run-up to the show. On the ...


Starling Murmur 29 Factory

Starling Murmur 29 Factory

By Eric McKeegan While an English bicycle company building steel frames isn’t that noteworthy, Starling stands out with a number of full-suspension bikes, including a single-speed-specific downhill bike. These bikes have an unexpected foundation, Starling founder Joe McEwan spent about 20 years as an aerospace engineer, mostly testing carbon fiber structures. So, how does a ...


Review: Viathon M.1 GX Eagle

Review: Viathon M.1 GX Eagle

By Brett Rothmeyer Online:www.viathonbicycles.com Price: $1998 Last year before the annual Sea Otter Classic, there were rumblings of a high-end Walmart bike coming to the market. Yes, high-end bikes and Walmart are an easy segway to a punchline, but it is no mystery that the Walton family has a vested interest in the bike industry. ...


Cannondale Habit Carbon 3

Cannondale Habit Carbon 3

Cannondale Habit Carbon 3 Price: $4,000 Sizes: S, M, L (tested), Online: cannondale.com Where were you “The Year Punk Broke”? It was 1991, sometime between late August and mid-October, Nirvana had just released “Smells Like Teen Spirit” into the world and everything, as we knew the popular culture to be, was about to be flipped ...


Rocky Mountain Releases Limited Instinct Carbon 99

Rocky Mountain Releases Limited Instinct Carbon 99

If you are the type that likes the finer things in limited quantities to show your friends just how fancy you are, well then feast your eyes on the Rocky Mountain Instinct Carbon 99. The Instinct 99 will only be available in the US and Canada and there will only be 20 made available in ...


Review: Pivot Vault – Pro Ultegra

Review: Pivot Vault – Pro Ultegra

The Pivot Vault has been positioned as a versatile drop-bar bike since its debut in 2013. Built for gravel, dirt, and road, its geometry has always leaned in favor of the cyclocross world more than the endurance scene. Now, with the latest geometry tweaks on the fourth-generation Vault, Pivot maintains the focus on high performance ...


Revel Bikes For LoveYourBrain Foundation

Revel Bikes For LoveYourBrain Foundation

Revel Bikes is raffling off a very special edition pink Rail to help fund the LoveYourBrain Foundation. Founded in 2014, the LoveYourBrain Foundation (LYB) was established by brothers, Adam and Kevin Pearce, following Kevin’s severe TBI from a snowboarding accident before the 2010 Olympics. They are a non-profit organization on a mission to improve the ...


Philly Bike Expo: Engin Cycles

Philly Bike Expo: Engin Cycles

Philly Bike Expo is easily one of our favorite events of the year. Despite our cross-state hockey rivalry, we love to visit Philadelphia. As noted by many of the attendees, the vibe at the Philly Bike Expo is always so positive, warm and welcoming and each year there are new vendors, new builders, and always ...


Philly Bike Expo: Winter Bicycles

Philly Bike Expo: Winter Bicycles

If you were trying to find Eric Estlund in a crowd it may not be as easy as you think for a guy sporting a head covered in tattoos and piercings. The soft-spoken Estlund is the sole driving force behind Winter Bicycles and on Saturday I combed the floor looking for his booth during the ...


Review: Reeb Sqweeb V2 SFP

Review: Reeb Sqweeb V2 SFP

As the Reeb Sqeeb V2 rolled up to my art studio, the aptly-named “Illusion Blue” paint job and sparkling silver accents made me nostalgic for my childhood days playing with Hot Wheels race cars in the driveway. As a craftsman myself, it’s heartening to know that I can roll into Longmont, Colorado, and shoot the ...


Philly Bike Expo: Moth Attack

Philly Bike Expo: Moth Attack

Megan Dean has been welding bike frames together for quite some time now. A transient of sorts Dean spent a good chunk of time cutting her teeth on the streets of Los Angeles as a bike messenger before starting a career as a frame builder. Her work speaks for itself, beautifully designed and finished bikes ...


Philly Bike Expo: 44 Bikes

Philly Bike Expo: 44 Bikes

I first met Kristofer Henry of 44 Bikes at the 2017 Philly Bike Expo. The immediate impact of a clean looking titanium hardtail will always grab my attention so like a moth to a flame I drifted into the 44 Bikes booth. Based out of New Hampshire, Kris knows a thing or two about riding ...


Review: Why Cycles Wayward

Review: Why Cycles Wayward

The Wayward from Why Cycles is a plus-sized bikepacking bike from Carbondale, Colorado-based Why Cycles. Why was founded in 2016 by Adam Miller and Greg Herman who were previously behind Borealis, a brand that sold innovative super-light carbon fat bikes at a time when most fat bikes were steel and weighed more than a barrel ...


Philly Bike Expo: Rodeo Labs Trail Donkey 3.0

Philly Bike Expo: Rodeo Labs Trail Donkey 3.0

If you sit down and talk with Stephen Fitzgerald about how and why he created Rodeo Labs, his nonchalant delivery leads one to believe it was kind of a goof. Make no mistake that Fitzgerald completely intended for both the Flaanimal the Trail Donkey to exist, but more for himself and friends to enjoy in ...


Philly Bike Expo: Schön Studio

Philly Bike Expo: Schön Studio

We are closing in on the end of our collection of mountain bikes from this year’s Philly Bike Expo. Our sport has been on a pretty serious growth spurt these last few years and the frame builders are reciprocating with a bunch of interesting and beautiful bikes. Danielle Schön of Shön Studio recently moved from ...


Review: Jamis Portal A1+

Review: Jamis Portal A1+

The 2019 Jamis Portal A1+ is a 130 mm trail bike whose versatility is limited only by the rider’s imagination. One part cross-country lover, two parts enduro thrillist, the Portal will take a rider wherever they wish to go without the slightest indication of a complaint. Built around the innovative 3VO suspension system designed by ...


Review: Ibis Ripley

Review: Ibis Ripley

My relationship with the new Ibis Ripley began some time ago. Way back in April, I was fortunate enough to be invited to the release ride for the latest version of the Ripley at Ibis Headquarters in Santa Cruz, California. Along with owner Scot Nicol, a group of us headed to the hills surrounding Santa ...


Be Kind Rewind: Carbonframes Onyx

Be Kind Rewind: Carbonframes Onyx

Walking the expo at this spring’s Dirt Fest Pennsylvania, I couldn’t help but marvel at all the killer new bikes on display. As a fan of vintage bikes, a vast majority of my experience with frame construction materials is constrained to steel, aluminum and titanium. Carbon fiber, at least as we know it today, was ...


Review: Ibis Ripmo AF

Review: Ibis Ripmo AF

The Ibis Ripmo AF landed on our doorstep almost immediately after returning the latest version of the Ripley back to Ibis. After spending the bulk of the summer on the Ibis Ripley and having heard so many good things about the Ripmo, I was eager to see how the first aluminum bike from Ibis in ...


Review: Canyon Neuron AL 7.0

Review: Canyon Neuron AL 7.0

Did you know you can place an order with Taco Bell using the restaurant chains’ mobile app? Simply choose the items you desire via push-button selection, whether it’s a Party Pack of tacos, or a six-pack of Burrito Supremes (hold the guac), select your local franchise, pay using the register built right into the app, ...


Pivot introduces the LES Singlespeed

Pivot introduces the LES Singlespeed

Earlier this year when Pivot Cycles revamped the company’s flagship cross-country race bike, the LES SL was no longer sporting the company’s signature Swinger II dropout system. Many A select few (including myself) speculated where to turn for a high-end carbon singlespeed that offered sliding-dropouts, modern hardtail geometry and the ability to run a proper ...


Review: Chumba Sendero

Review: Chumba Sendero

Chumba’s lineup offers two hardtails: the Stella and Sendero. As the Stella collects its accolades on the cross-country and endurance race scene, the Sendero is off-course looking for anything and everything to pop off. Downcountry, a fun cross-country bike or simply modern hardtail geometry, whatever you want to call it, the Sendero is titillating. THE ...


Review: Marin Pine Mountain

Review: Marin Pine Mountain

Named for a fire road and peak in Marin County, the 2020 Pine Mountain 1 from venerable bicycle manufacturer Marin has been in and out of the company’s lineup since its inception in 1986. The no-nonsense, steel hardtail has traversed the history of mountain biking, morphing to maintain relevance along the way.  THE BIKE The ...




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