Mountain bikes

Yukondog

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I can't stand running. This year I have forced my self to run and have done over 250 miles. I'm thinking of dropping the coin down and picking up a mtn bike to take the spot of running.

For those that ride do you feel you are getting a beneficial workout for you legs and lungs. It seems to me that trail riding in the mountains would be a awesome workout and help out tremendously for mtn hunting. Running sucks!

I think I would enjoy the ride much more than pounding the ground with my body. Seems to me it would be less impact on your joints as well.

If there are any mtn bike nuts out there what are your thoughts on the specialized stumpjumper. They come in a xxl frame which is handy because I'm 6'4.

Thanks,

Matt
 

Matt Cashell

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I ride a Giant Reign, which has been a great bike for me. A friend absolutely loves his Stumpjumper 29er. It is hard to go wrong with the major brands: Specialized, Giant, Trek, Diamondback.

My next bike will be a 29er. Mountain biking is a fantastic excercise for endurance, core strength, and leg strength. I run often, but also bike because it is great excercise, and a lot more fun than running.
 

fillthefreezer

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29er for sure! they make a huge difference. i actually just bought one last week. brand doesn't matter too much as long as u stick with a major player(kona giant trek specialized gt)
i still think you need to run but on days I'm sore or don't want to be super sore tomorrow ill bike. i also use mine to access my trail cams in the timberlands behind the locked gates cus i can cover some ground!
i also feel like it works different muscles than running giving you a complete workout when done together
 

Curtis C

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Which Stumpjumper are you looking at hardtail or fsr. Both good bikes but made for different uses. Specialized has really improved over the last 5 or 6 years. They have an excellent suspension design but they used nylon bushing in the pivots for way to long. In the last 5 or 6 years they have really stepped up their game with sealed bearings and quality components.

MTN bike riding can be a good workout especially if you hit some of the longer loops. MTBing takes more time and mileage to equal a running excercise. I enjoy it because I can cover more of the trail and see more mountains on a single ride.

The closest trail to you that I am familiar with is Ridgeline. About 12 miles with a good amount of climbing but not real technical. If you get around that one easily you can hit Indian Creek for a solid workout or beating in my case. So many options around you, Falcon Trail on the AFA, Buffalo Creek for 50+ miles of singletrack, Pueblo Reservoir when the snow has fallen in COS and Denver. Many Many trails in Denver but I haven't ridden up there much. Several sections of the Colorado Trail that can be ridden in a day.

I haven't been able to ride much lately since having lower back surgery but I will be back on the saddle after archery season. A friend and I run a MTN Biking Meetup group in Colorado Springs so we always have a ride going somewhere. I have been setting up my hunting gear to double as bikepacking gear.

Epic 29er 008 (Small).jpgBikepacking Bikes 003 (Small).jpg
 
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Yukondog

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Last mtn bike I bought was 20yrs ago. Still have it. Wow how things have changed.

I'm looking at the stumpjumper fsr comp or carbon. A good friend loves his Yeti 575. So I will be looking at both closely. All the technology is over my head not being around bikes for so long. Will most likey go with what feels best. My understanding is Yeti doesn't have a frame big enough for me. So by default the stumpjumper may end up being the one.

Any light you guys can shine on the subject would be awesome. My goal... leadville 100 in 2014. Under 9hrs of course so I can collect the supper plate sized belt buckle. Cat who won it this years was a pro from Austria. 6hrs 32mins. Wow

Thanks

Matt
 

a3dhunter

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I ride a KONA mahuna 29er and really like it.
More of an entry level bike, hard tail, that was affordable and will do what I want. I've got a couple hundred miles on it on single track mostly and it does well.
 

Curtis C

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The FSR and 575 are both in the 6 inch travel range and both will come to life on the techy/rough type trails. Yeti tends to build their bikes with a little more of a slack head tube angle. You can visibly see that in the two pics I have posted above. That HT angle is great for descending but you pay for it a bit on the climbs. It also tends to close up the cockpit some. Yeti seat tubes are usually longer making up for that while making the bike feel bigger. At 6'4" you will fit well within the XL size for the 575 or most all Yeti bikes. I am 6'1" and a large fit me great. I often wished my 06 575 was still in my stable.

You are considering some nice bikes. The best advice I can give is ride them before you buy one. And ride the 29ers that Yeti, Specialized, and others make. One bike will clearly feel better and more comfortable than the rest.
At 6'4" you may feel better on 29er. When I bought the Yeti BT 29er I was instantly more comfortable and faster on any of the trails I was riding. Since then I got Epic 29er for a smoother ride on rough trail. They are not for everyone but at least give one a test ride before you buy.

Try to pair up the bike with the type of trails you will be riding. If you plan to ride rough and rocky trail 75% of the time then a 6" bike might be best. if your trails are mainly fast flowy ST with the occasional rock garden then a HT or 4" bike may be best.

The Leadville 100 course is primarily XC, while the fsr and 575 can be ridden within the cut an XC bike may be better. A good friend just rode and beat cut on a 26" FSR Stumpy. Do you know what the Austrian was riding?

C
 

Matt Cashell

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Curtis C,

I must say that lefty looks alien on the Specialized! I bet it rides pretty nice, though.
 

fillthefreezer

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I'm riding a hard rock 29er as i spend lots of time on logging roads and pavement around the house just getting exercise so i didn't want my mtb budget to cut into my hunting budget too much. its comfortable and does what i need it too, any more bike than that and id have to sell my dirt bike to pay for it.


with all this info pouring in we could have a mtb tab before long...hahaha
 
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Yukondog

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His name is Alban Lakata. He was riding a Canyon Mtn Bike, I believe. It was a hard tail to boot. I have a pic on my phone of him coming across the finishing line.

There are so many different configurations out there for a bike. I do like the fact that Yeti is built in Golden. Something as simple as that may persuade me to buy the 575 from them.

Curtis - thank you for all the information. Sounds like you have been around the block a time or two with these bikes. I would like a good all around bike. Can't afford two different bikes. I would say 70% of my riding would be on single tracks with the hope of a nice reward on the tail end of the ride being some fun downhill riding.

I have been told to get a 29er. The Yeti XL frame should fit. I need to find some local dealers that have a bike that fits so I can ride. Also would like to catch it right so I buy last years model and can save some coin. A used one would be okay, except I have not been able to find one yet. Either the stumpy fsr or Yeti 575.

Matt
 
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Yukondog

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Another questions I have is when should you consider a full suspension bike and when should you consider a hard tail bike? Seems a lot of the guys in the Leadville ride did not use full suspension bikes. When is it a must to have?
 

Matt Cashell

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I would suggest a full suspension bike, unless you are racing seriously. They are superior in every way but weight, IMO. a 5-6" travel FS 26er or 3-5" travel 29er would be great for your intended riding. You do get better componenets for the money with a hardtail, and if you do go that way, make sure it is a 29er.
 

a3dhunter

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Another questions I have is when should you consider a full suspension bike and when should you consider a hard tail bike? Seems a lot of the guys in the Leadville ride did not use full suspension bikes. When is it a must to have?
One thing to consider is a quality hardtail can be had for $300-500 less than a fulls suspension bike of the same caliber. $1500 and under I would go hard tail.

If money isn't an option, then go with FS. If you want better components on a bike for less than $1500 then go with a hard tail.
 

slvrslngr

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Before you decide on any one brand or style, go to a few bike shops and ride as many different bikes as you can. If you're just looking for a fitness ride, I'd stick with a hardtail. If you're looking at seriously getting into riding/racing, then consider a dual squishy. My current ride is a 29'er and I won't be going back to a 26'er any time soon, the benefits far outweigh the penalties. And yes, you will get a great workout riding, though you should still throw in some running as well, it's always best to mix up your fitness regiment.
 

Curtis C

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Another questions I have is when should you consider a full suspension bike and when should you consider a hard tail bike? Seems a lot of the guys in the Leadville ride did not use full suspension bikes. When is it a must to have?
On most dirt trails in CO you will find enough chunk to justify full suspension, so I would suggest a full squish bike if one bike is all you plan.

For me
Ridge line in Castlerock= hardtail
Falcon Trail at AFA= 4" 29er
Buffalo Creek= 4" 29er
Palmer Park= 6" bike like FSR or 575. I no longer own one of these bikes but still ride here with a few HAB's

I prefer the 4" 29er for 2 of the 4 trails mentioned, so if I had to choose one bike it would be the 4"29er or a 5" 26er. I dont ride really technical stuff(to old for that stuff)
 

Titaniumman

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I bought a Fuji hard tail three years ago. I don't ride it enough but it's a good bike and less than $500 at the time. I compared it with a comparatively priced Kona. Fuji is worth a look IMO.
 
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Yukondog

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Thanks for all the info guys. Good stuff!

Is there a substantial difference in the FSR/575 6" and the SJ Epic which I believe is 5"? Where does this difference in travel come into play. Rookie question I know, but everyone has to start somewhere. Why not Rokslide....

Matt
 

Curtis C

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Thanks for all the info guys. Good stuff!

Is there a substantial difference in the FSR/575 6" and the SJ Epic which I believe is 5"? Where does this difference in travel come into play. Rookie question I know, but everyone has to start somewhere. Why not Rokslide....

Matt
EPIC is a different model bike. Suspension design is similar but it is a 4" bike built for XC riding. The red and white bike above is an EPIC 29er comp. SJ and 575 are built for All Mountain. The 575 and SJ will ride quite different thats why folks suggest you ride them all

FSR is the rear suspension design owned by Specialized
Epic is 4" ish
Camber is 5" ish
Stumpjumper is 6"ish
 
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Yukondog

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Gotcha. I was looking at the Yeti sb95. It that Yeti's first 29er? I thought the 575 was a 29er. There goes my purchase price up 1k should I go with Yeti.

I have only rode the SJ at this point. The bike shop I went to didn't have any xl frame Yeti's to ride.
 

Curtis C

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Thre SB95 is Yetis first full squish 29er, The BigTop hardtail is their first 29er. I really like the SB95 but it does seem heavy and priced a little high compared to other bikes of similar quality. That and most other brands in that market put a lifetime warranty on their frames, Yeti only 3 years. The SB95 rides really nice, guaranteed to be smiling while on it.
 
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