Gear

Review: Bontrager XR2 Team Issue Tires

Tire selection is a very personal choice. Bontrager understands that.  The company’s website says, “The first step in finding the right tire is deciding how much tread you need.” That’s solid advice. I find that few components choices are more personal than tires. Bontrager classifies its tires on a 0 to 5 scale (plus a […]

Review: Burley Coho XC Trailer

Burley Coho XC Trailer By Stephen Haynes Weight: 22 lbs. MSRP: $419 Online: burley.com Back in 1978, there weren’t the myriad options for stowing and towing your cargo by bike that we luxuriate in today. Burley founders Alan and Beverly Scholz took it upon themselves to develop a method for transporting goods, gear and their […]

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 […]

First Rides – XTR M9100 12-speed

A few weeks back, Shimano took me (and other media) to the mountain town of Crested Butte, Colorado for a few days of high-altitude riding on the newly-released, 12-speed XTR M9100. Unlike the previous two generations, this newest version of XTR looks and feels like a true redesign rather than a few small updatess. Shimano […]

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 […]

Review: Flylow Spring MTB Gear

Testers: Scott Williams and Jess Nelson Flylow Gear flylowgear.com The millennial tuxedo. Athleisure. A decision to seek attire that can keep up with the on-the-go active lifestyle. Whatever you call it, casual athletic wear is here to stay and more companies such as Flylow are looking to jump on board. Since the company’s initial debut […]

Review: Roadrunner Bags Americano

Roadrunner Bags Americano – $380 by Stephen Haynes In the last year or so I’ve taken to painting outside. As my interest in the activity has grown, so too has my list of supplies that I carry with me into the field. To that end, I’ve been looking for a bag that would remain unphased […]

Review: Search and State S2-R Performance Bib Shorts

Reviewer: Brett Rothmeyer Search and State S2-R Performance Bib Shorts: $215 When it comes to cycling clothing, there is nothing more important than a solid pair of bib shorts while tackling long days in the saddle. Multiple days of grueling riding are hard enough without having to worry about comfort and the wear and tear […]

Review: Shimano AM7 MTB shoe

Shimano’s component arm moves slowly with new product development, but when it comes to its shoes, Shimano clips along at a pretty fast rate. The new AM7 is Shimano’s newest clipless all-mountain/gravity shoe, also known as the SH-AM701. The old AM700 was a platform pedal shoe. The platform pedal version of this new shoe is […]

Endura Singletrack Jacket II

Endura Singletrack Jacket II – $163 By Stephen Haynes   The Singletrack II from Endura combines comfort, style, and functionality to produce one stunning, yet useful garment. The lightweight, waterproof shell is loose enough to get a flannel or sweater underneath without being baggy and comes in three colors: red, blue and black/camo. It also […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

Review: Bontrager Line Pro 30 TLR

Early in 2017, Bontrager unleashed a handful of enduro/trail and cross-country wheelset options to help make upgrading to a stronger and lighter wheelset more affordable. One offering from Bontrager is the Line Pro 30, which offers a hook-bead carbon rim with 29 mm internal /36 mm external widths. The Rapid Drive 108 hub (Shimano 10/11-speed […]

New Shimano XTR M9100 – Options, options, options

Everyone knew a new XTR group was coming, but what Shimano released today is still unexpected. The new 12-speed 10-51 cassette wasn’t that hard to guess, but three cassette choices are unexpected. There are new hubs and brakes as well, but let’s tackle the drivetrain first. (Full disclosure: this is all info from Shimano’s press […]

Paul Component Releases Boxcar Stem in 110mm

Paul Component has a friend her name is Boxcar! Cigarettes and beer in El Sob…. er wait, that’s the wrong Boxcar. Paul Components has updated their beloved Boxcar stem. With the addition of the 110mm length, there is a Boxcar stem for almost every length desired. Machined from 2024 alloy Paul boasts that the Boxcar stem […]

Review: Two 29×2.6 offerings from Maxxis and Bontrager

As the industry seems to be working itself back from 3-inch plus tires, we may have just struck gold with the new 2.6 offerings. When mounted up, the 29×2.6 is just shy of the width of a 27.5×2.8 and only a smidge taller than a 29×2.4. So, increased volume and traction without sacrificing bottom bracket […]

Review: Pearl Izumi Versa Shorts and Tops

When Pearl Izumi created its new Versa line, it had a few things in mind. According to the company, “It had to be comfortable. Functional. Extremely versatile”. All of which are characteristics that I personally look for. Aside from making packing for trips easier, I like to know that I can run down to the […]

Review: Leatt DBX 3.0 All-Mountain

Leatt is well-known for protecting vertebrae and collarbones with its line of neck braces, but after riding with this DBX 3.0 All-Mountain for half a year, I suspect we’ll be seeing the Leatt name on a lot more heads. The protractedly named DBX 3.0 All-Mountain is a modern, extended-coverage helmet, keeping skulls and their contents […]

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 […]

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 […]

The Pisgah Stage Race bike and gear guide

By Andrew Vontz In 2017, I competed in the five-day, five-stage Pisgah Mountain Bike Stage Race, survived the most technical trails I’d ever ridden on a demanding course and came away with strong ideas about how to do better in 2018. Based on what I learned and extensive conversations with Pisgah honchos like Chris Komanski, […]

New forks from FOX

Fox released its entire 2019 line up. Here are some of the highlights: 34 Step-Cast More than one staffer around the office has eyeballed the 32 Step Cast for personal bikes, but the 100mm travel limitation prevented anyone from pulling the trigger. Rather than extend the travel of the 32, Fox slimmed down the 34 chassis, […]

Review: Big Agnes Shovelhead down jacket

By Helena Kotala  Whether you’re going bikepacking or doing a long winter ride in ever-changing conditions, a packable yet very warm jacket is an invaluable piece of gear for when you reach camp for the night or the temperature suddenly drops 20 degrees high in the mountains. There are two routes to go for such […]

The Bomber Z1 returns – Marzocchi drops new fork range

The original Marzocchi Bomber Z1 changed the way we all ride mountain bikes. Not only did it change riding, but it forced the competition to step up and offer better products. The new Z1 looks to carry on the tradition of ride quality over all else. Marzocchi is now owned by Fox, so these forks will share […]

New RockShox SID and TwistLoc remote

Cross-country racing continues to get more and more technical and demanding and the new SID looks ready to continue RockShox’s winning ways in the Lycra arena. RockShox SID World Cup A no-compromise, elite-level racing fork, the new SID World Cup is a short-travel tool for winning races. FEATURES / BENEFITS New friction-reducing DebonAir™ air spring delivers […]

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 […]

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 […]

A brief history of the dropper seatpost

In the early days of mountain biking, quick-release seatpost binders were on the bikes even when the wheels were nutted. The trails in those days were usually pretty primitive and bore little semblance to the IMBA-spec’d trails being built today. Many steep descents required the saddle to be lowered out of the way so you […]

Review: Bontrager SE4 29 x 3.0 tires

I’ve been a fan of Bontrager’s Chupacabra tires since they first hit the market. For something so light and fast the Chupas manage to provide predictable traction in conditions that should stymie its pattern of small tread blocks. But that lightness comes at a price. I’ve punctured these tires a fair number of times in […]