Most mountain bikers should ride 29ers

Yes, it’s controversial, I know that.

Sit in a trail centre car park and watch the river of money ride by. No wonder thieves flock to these areas! Now take a look at the types of bikes that ride by. I’m delighted that the number of downhill bikes being dragged around the local XC loop are diminishing, but we haven’t moved far down the scale. A quality enduro machine seems to be the weapon of choice.

Don’t get me wrong. I love these bikes and lust after many of them but they were designed and built for a purpose and for those of you old enough to remember the episode of Friends when Phoebe doesn’t ride her bike, to quote Ross “the bike is dying”. The bike wants a challenge and a red trail centre loop just isn’t going to cut it.

Now, I spent the last few years avoiding 29ers like the rest of us. It started because of the looks of them, but this has been addressed. Then I jumped on the bandwagon of the wheels not having the strength. Well, today, many of the enduro bikes have 29" wheels, so again, those days are over.

As I ride around my local trail centre and overtake (yes, it does happen on occasion) these people dragging the heavier bikes, I can’t help but smile when I watch the descent with a distinct lack of air time. These people tend not to ride ‘hard’ and push the limits of the machine. Hell, I ride a 120mm xc machine and that could be considered overkill in the eyes of some.

The point here is to be honest. Honest about the trails you ride and the type of rider you are. We’re all so keen to show people we are in the club by buying the type of bike that peer pressure says we should buy.

Fuck that.

Buy the right bike. For most, I think this is a 29er. Sorry.