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Anyone ride a Rocky Element on the Shore?

Oct. 31, 2018, 12:24 p.m.
Posts: 813
Joined: Nov. 18, 2015

Thanks in advance.

Im hurt and off the bike, looking outside at the rain and so what else is there to do aside from look for a new bike!

Ive been considering a snazzy hardtail for many months but am having a tough time committing to a Primer or a Surface or something like that as it probably has a higher likelihood of sitting unused whereas an XC oriented squishy bike likely would see miles.  

I have a '14 E29 and it is wicked and I still love it but I would like to supplement it with a bike that's less enduro and more XC for the days when Im looking for something different than a point and smash bike. I had a 26r SWorks Epic which was a handful of terror here, so I sold it. Climbed amazing well but I found it treacherous descending anything that was even a bit gnarly'ish, possibly due to how it was set up, but dramatic and sweeping changes would have been required. Bought a Knolly Endorphin that was awesome but more Enduro'ish than I expected so Ive since given that to my son who is shredding on it now. Id love to have a usable XC bike.

I love XC bikes but am worried that they might not be useful on the Shore - the 26r Epic was not. I always felt that I would still have that bike if it had have been a 29r, so Im thinking that a Rocky Element BC Edition could be a rideable XC bike for the Shore. Obviously not for the more gnarly stuff but with the 29s and a bit more travel, it should work as a GREAT shore climber and a fun descender on things that arnt too sketchy. Trails like Upper Tall Cans, 7th, Crinkum, loamers, Foreverafter…….that type of thing. Id love to find a bike with more equivalent climbing and descending abilities...something more balanced. I know that an Altitude or Instinct is the more useful Shore bike but they're too Enduro next to my E29 - and Id have the same issue as I had with the Endorphin.

Anyone have one and can provide feedback on usability of a Rocky Element ( including BC Edition) on the Shore by a normal person (not some freak)?


Oct. 31, 2018, 2:33 p.m.
Posts: 1339
Joined: Feb. 17, 2009

Oct. 31, 2018, 3:07 p.m.
Posts: 813
Joined: Nov. 18, 2015

Thanks - that's the article that got me thinking about this. I think that it opens the door for it being a usable bike on the Shore, but it stops short of saying so much.

Im thinking that if there is a true XC bike that can reasonably be considered as rideable on the Shore, the BC Edition Element is probably one of the few.

Oct. 31, 2018, 3:25 p.m.
Posts: 229
Joined: Jan. 2, 2018

I have a chromag and a 6" bike, I ride the chromag less and less as the novelty wears off. I think a short travel 27.5 makes sense:

Santa Cruz 5010

Transition Scout

Kona process 134


Oct. 31, 2018, 8:52 p.m.
Posts: 1339
Joined: Feb. 17, 2009

At 69 * in its slackeSt setting with a 120mm fork, I think that it’s stil a bit steep. I’ve been riding. A 130mm intense spider 29c for lighter days and I find that it compliments the E29 well. 130mm and 67 * is good for short travel 29er. More XC than that and I’m not personally comfortable pushing the bike. I tried owning a Devinci Atlas with a 130fork and it only lasted 3 months until I sold it to a guy in Kamloops who is very happy with it. I felt the bike to be too twitchy for shore duty.

Edit: I was wrong on the head angle in my post. I am running a Dual position RS Pike. The head angle is 68.5 * @130mm and 67 * @ 150mm

 Last edited by: rnayel on Nov. 1, 2018, 3:02 p.m., edited 2 times in total.
Nov. 1, 2018, 11:39 a.m.
Posts: 813
Joined: Nov. 18, 2015

My E29 is a 2014 which means that it has a HA of 67.5 with a 160 Pike upfront and I find that the only thing holding me back on that bike on the steep stuff is the dropper, which doesn't drop far enough for my liking for DH rig oriented trails. My Epic was 71deg and 26r, and I found that combo too much of a handful, especially with skinny XC race tires! I have a DH bike to use when I want to ride the gross stuff.

The Element isn't THAT different than my E29 HA (67.5 vs 69 HA in slackest)….My E29 is more of a trail bike and less of an Enduro than yours. I think that the Element would be fine outside of the gnarly stuff. But Im still guessing that the big wheels with proper rubber and trail oriented travel are what will make the difference when paired to an XC oriented HA.

But you're right, a slacker shorter travel bike might be a better choice as youre not really giving up anything with a 67 HA vs 69, and youre gaining flexibility. 67HA in a 25lb or less 120/130ish bike with otherwise XC  geo would be a good combo.

Nov. 1, 2018, 3:05 p.m.
Posts: 1339
Joined: Feb. 17, 2009

Posted by: Ddean

But you're right, a slacker shorter travel bike might be a better choice as youre not really giving up anything with a 67 HA vs 69, and youre gaining flexibility. 67HA in a 25lb or less 120/130ish bike with otherwise XC geo would be a good combo.

You just described the Yeti SB100, it is at 67.8 * with a 120mm fork, I'd imagine 67 * with a 130mm fork.

 Last edited by: rnayel on Nov. 1, 2018, 3:27 p.m., edited 2 times in total.
Nov. 2, 2018, 2:40 a.m.
Posts: 10
Joined: July 18, 2017

What about Giant Trance 29, 66.5* and 130mm fork.

Nov. 2, 2018, 5:08 a.m.
Posts: 2326
Joined: Sept. 5, 2012

Posted by: kiwizak

What about Giant Trance 29, 66.5* and 130mm fork.


Nov. 2, 2018, 11:58 a.m.
Posts: 2220
Joined: May 23, 2006

Slack seat / otherwise I'd own one.

Nov. 2, 2018, 2:13 p.m.
Posts: 996
Joined: Feb. 5, 2011

I have basically the same bike as you (2015 E29) - based on the trends in geometry since 2015/2014, wouldn't a 2018/19 XC bike really not be much different than your 2014 E29? If you had a super slack 29er (like one of those 64-65 HTA bikes) I would say it's worth getting an XC bike to compliment it, but I would think that any current model XC bike that is rideable on the Shore would have too much overlap with your E29 to make it a worthwhile purchase.

But to be honest, I've never really ridden a true XC bike (at least not on the Shore) so maybe I am missing something here.

Nov. 4, 2018, 11:30 a.m.
Posts: 1970
Joined: Jan. 5, 2010

Posted by: DemonMike

Posted by: kiwizak

What about Giant Trance 29, 66.5* and 130mm fork.


x3. I really liked the 27.5 trance that I rented in Salt Lake City last season. It ended up doing several days of bike park duty. If I ever felt the need to replace my hardtail with a short-travel trail bike, that would be the frame I would do it with. I have relatively short legs though, so I’m not the best to comment on the slack seat tube.

Nov. 4, 2018, 6:48 p.m.
Posts: 91
Joined: April 26, 2004

I ride a 2017 Element as my only bike to do everything mtn bike related from Fiver Enduros to bikepack races.

69 head angle is a good compromise between tight/janky to wide open stuff. Kind of like with wide bars or lighter weight, there comes a point when too much of any trendy metric becomes detrimental.

For "7th, Crinkum, loamers, Foreverafter..." as you mention above, it works great. I would add Ladies except for Bart Simpson corner, middle and lower Digger, and its best for things like Lord of the Squirrels, Thrill Me Kill Me, Comfortably Numb and Nimby.

I found a big different in tackling steep downhill faces between my old 140/120 69 degree head angle 26er and my current 120/100 69 degree head angle 29er. I'm much more confident with the 29er. I've read that going to 29 from 26 makes a head angle feel ~2 degrees slacker without changing anything else. As well, if you set up your fork with all the volume reducers (but lower air pressure), you will still have plushness to save your hands, but the fork won't compress as much while braking down steeps or sharp transitions, so the fork angle will not steepen as much as a longer travel fork.

You won't DH as fast as a real enduro bike, but won't be far behind, and will enjoy technical climbs more

PS I have no idea if I am "a normal person (not some freak)" But would say I lack power, but have good endurance, and am chicken of getting hurt, but have decent rolling-on-two-wheels/close-too-the-ground trials skills

 Last edited by: taprider on Nov. 4, 2018, 10:23 p.m., edited 4 times in total.
Nov. 4, 2018, 10:26 p.m.
Posts: 1134
Joined: Nov. 21, 2002

A 2019 norco fluid would work quite well, 130/120 29er at 66.5 HA and 76 SA with good reach figures. If you want to go a bit further over into that spectrum even then perhaps an Optic?

If/when my Chromag Primer becomes too much for me, the Fluid would check a lot of boxes off for me

Nov. 10, 2018, 4:02 p.m.
Posts: 813
Joined: Nov. 18, 2015

Thanks all - most helpful!

I’m partial to Rocky so I’m pleased to hear from taprider that his Element is working really well on the type of trails I had in mind. Seems like it will work for me!

His description is exactly what I’m after as I hoped that the big wheels, dropper, travel and probably tires can make an XC bike rideable here.

 Last edited by: Ddean on Nov. 10, 2018, 4:04 p.m., edited 1 time in total.

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