Saturday, March 20, 2010

Why a Cyclocross Bike for Trail Riding...

In a previous post, I mentioned the first two rides on my single 'crosser - a custom built Motobecane Fantom Cross Uno. I knew that a CX bike for the trails was something special, but I never knew it would end up being pretty much the only bike I'd ride when it came to the trails. Yes, I'll unhang the suspension bikes for a trip or two and when I decide to stay on the road, the Surly Pacer comes down - but for my daily ritual of asphalt/dirt/asphalt, I really couldn't ask for a better bike.

This is it in its current form:

The changes from the original build are upgraded cranks (Truvativ Omnium), Easton EA70 46cm shallow drops and a KMC chain. I'm already through the rear tire and after only three months of riding I need a replacement.

What I find is for the type of "fitness" riding I like to do, this truly is the choice bike. It climbs better than any mountain bike I own and descends any non-technical trail just as fast. I am faster on this bike than any of my other trail bikes when considering equal terrain (obviously my full suspension bike does much better on technical downhills).

I do find myself wanting gears, though. There are some climbs that are just not do'able on the singlespeed, so I resort to walking (which I hate). With this kind of climbing geometry, it'd be so awesome to shift up. There is one hill (Coyote Peak in Santa Teresa County Park) that requires an initial walk, but I can clear everything else.

I think if I can go back, I'd build a geared bike. In fact, if I would've listen to my brother, I would've built one cyclocross bike from the beginning instead of having my Surly Pacer AND my SS 'crosser. Oh well...

It's nice to have the variety of bikes that I own - and I do ride them all. However, when you ride only a few, it makes you wonder if all the others are necessary, especially when you've bascially found "The One".

To me, a cyclocross bike is like taking all my favorite attributes of an off-road bike and forming Voltron. And in case you didn't know - Voltron is BADASS.

1 comment:

  1. hi dion,
    i somehow came across your site via other cx pages... i couldn't agree more with you on this fact: a CX bike is the best do all bike. I'm from santa clara... we should go for a cx trail ride sometime... ciao!

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