I was lucky enough this past spring to pick up a pair of GR9's at half price. They've had the good grip and fit that you talk about with the GR5 with the added bonus of a great footbed that isn't too flexy. I've done some of my biggest rides ever this year wearing these shoes and finished the rides with no foot pain at all. When I was looking at Shimano shoes, one sales person advised exactly what you've said Cam, that the soles on the GR5 are very flexible and so not suitable for longer rides. Shimano makes great shoes and so it's a matter of whether or not they're the right shoes for your feet. Great insight sir.
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I've been riding for enough years to have had a few things interesting parts over the years. I don't keep much now and tend to ride things until they no longer work, or I've sold the bike. But, one thing I only let go of a couple years ago was a 2000 Marzocchi Mr.T fork. Dual crown, 5" travel, spindly legged thing from the days I was learning to drop off stuff. I kept it as a backup until I got to the point where it was never going to be on another bike of mine, and I had nowhere to display it. Sturdy little fork though representing a time of standing around watching friends trying to push their skill levels without dying, LOL.
I fully admit, the reason the XL works for me at 5'11" is because the Rocky's up until this year were sized on the smaller side of the spectrum. I sure like how much more in the bike I feel when on a larger framed bike, so long as the reach doesn't make it weird for me.
There's so much more to fit and bar height than where you ride, in my old opinion. I too ride the Interior and am only 5'11" on an Instict XL. I'v added tons of spacers to make it work for me, but the guy I bought it off of is about 6'4" and he had it slammed with only 1 spacer. It depends on your body shape and also where your body strength comes from. Some people have strong limber backs, some do not. Hope you've found a bar height that's working for you Lu.
This is a very topical story even if you don't want an Answer Protaper. I'm only 5'11" and on my XL Instinct run a ton of spacers to get the bars to an acceptable height. The only question I have is, is it because I'm now over 50, or is it younger people too, who are finding current bars are quite often too low?
Fully agree. Another bony arse here and, as proof, just yesterday I did my biggest ride in years, 40 kms, 5 hrs all dirt roads and trails and the worst part was riding for about 40 minutes on a flat dirt road. This used to hurt even when I wore a chamois because I rarely spend that much time going neither up or down and it puts a different kind of pressure on the old behind. My Jockey long leg briefs are the ticket!
Thanks for the honest story Lee. Even if we don't all have the issues, a lot of us can relate. For myself, even at 51, I'm still stoked when I get that confident loose feel on the bike. The loose confidence doesn't happen every ride because of past injuries to myself and friends that can stick in the back of mind, but I love being outside and when the good feelings come, there's nothing better. And, congrats on tackling the big line.
Fully agree with your post. The more I focus on "fast", the slower and rougher I ride. In fact, this time last year, I rode with that mentality on a night where I should have listened to my mental state better because I was definitely not "feeling it". The end result was a badly broken leg that I'm just now getting back to using properly. Those of us that aren't racers really don't need more articles on how to be faster, and more articles about flow and how to get more fun out of a trail. That is why we're here right? Been riding for 30 years now and fun has always been the number 1 reason I ride. Love the article Lee as it really addresses the thing that slows our progression once our base skill levels have been acheived.
Absolutely loved this article Cam. Love the series in fact. My buddy and I talk about this topic all the time. When I start thinking about getting a sports car, I start thinking about the consumables and maintenance in general, and then I look at my Insitnct BC that reguarly gets beaten up down mtb trails 2 times a week. Bikes are such a bargain but they seem expensive. People who own side by sides are constantly repairing them, motos and quads always need gas, bikes can be ridden as hard as we feel comfortable pushing them and they always encourage more. I was lucky enough to drive a Porsche 911 GT3 at a track in Vegas a couple years ago and I will never forget how cool and once in a lifetime that experience was. But, it pales in comparison to riding my bike and slide around and hit rock sections with your buddies hooting and hollering all around you. All that said, I would jump at the chance to drive another Porsche, they are unreal cars. Thank you Cam.
I too am a total car fan. But, I'm far from wealthy and struggle to justify my $5000 mountain bike. So, I get my kicks playing Dirt Rally 2.0 on the PS4 when all the duties are taken care of but riding isn't in the cards. I have as much fun as I can in my old Impreza automagic while getting to the trails where the real fun begins. the beauty of mountain bikes is that unlike cars, I can ride a piece of finely tuned machinery as fast and far as my skills will let me. I'm riding a bike that is the car equivalent of a Corvette, STI, Shelby Mustang (no I don't have Ferrari level bike budget lol) and I love that it takes so much abuse and just asks for a little chain lube and bolt check every ride. Those that say mountain bikes are a rip off should look at what it costs to get the same level of experience out of any other machinery. To me, they are a bargain. I love this sport and I love the vehicles that get us there.
I bought one of the Standard fenders in March and it works great. On top of that, the little details for mounting are well thought out and way better than zip ties. Everyone thinks they're just for mud, but you're right in that they also keep sizeable rocks from hitting my downtube and I'm grateful for that as well. I'd buy another one without hesitation.
The thing that appeals to me most about these new geometry bikes more than anything is seat tube angles that are appropriate for spending a bunch of time climbing. It's unfortunate that some frame makers make the angle slacker on the bigger models. What they don't realize is that thos of us with long inseams end up with our asses way off the back and for that reason, the post or tube, the steeper the angle should be, not slacker. Thank you Chromag for keeping sta the same throughout the size range.
Right on the money Bagheera. If we're looking for quality, we don't find it by measuring the quantity. Thank you Seb, Cam and NSMB in general, for trying to bring us the quality before the quantity. There is a balancing act in all of this. There are no rules here to follow other than hope what you feel is important will be important to others and therefore, the people will keep coming to have a look.
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