Been running Xt/SLX levers with saint/Zee calipers for about 5 years and it is a great combo. Certainly a lot of power if that is your thing. Grabby for sure but that has never bothered me. At 205lbs I want the power and the Xt/Zee option works awesome.
Note I have not been able to see/find a difference between saint calipers and Zee calipers, other than pin versus bolt to keep the pads from falling out. As a result I stick with Zee calipers for the savings.
I like the combo so much that when a recently built a new enduro bike from scratch, I built the brakes using Xt levers, saint cable, Zee calipers. Awesome build.
Separate helmet for night riding with light attached. Still with a visor though. I still where a pack in summer so no real diff in winter other than I carry more. Winter additions include food (bars), and gloves. If it is wet out I climb up with a pair of simple fleece gloves. Once at the top I put on a fresh pair of riding gloves. I usually carry at least three pairs of spare riding gloves ( of varying thickness and waterproofness), on winter rides so my pack sometimes looks pretty big.
Late to the party, but what a good thread. I used carry tonnes of stuff as Cam noted. I still carry a pack (and have two packs. One for DH and one for all mountain). I remember life before a Camelbak with all the stuff on the bike. The Camelbak was a revelation. Would still rather put stuff on my back than bike or fanny.
That said, I don’t carry much. Water, tube, KMC tire lever with missing link tool incorporated, old school Allen key set with added torx Allen key, zap straps, plugs w bacon strip and valve core, pump w gorilla tape (no C02). Never had the need to seat a tire with Stan’s rim and Magic Mary.
Very true. I am one of the old farts. My opinion on “hard” is skewed as I have ridden here too long. What used to be black has been massaged on many trails. Oilcan re-routed years ago so it is no longer fall line ish and now curves around. It is no longer black. Initial first roles on Boogieman have always (at least the last 20 years), been a bit janky to role over the root and rocks. Now they have new bermed corner rolls and are much easier.
I see lots of folks riding newer trails which is great. Not opposed to having the smooth trails. But don’t like trails to get smoothed out without the original lines or difficulty preserved. Expresso used to have jank. The new Expresso was built (which is a great trail), but what would be even better is if the original was also preserved and maintained along with the new.
Riders who continue to look for difficulty just end up being pushed to non sanctioned trails. So the closer of things like starfish don’t accomplish what the district wants anyway.
Would love to see the bureaucrats understand and appreciate that not all trail work needs to smooth something out. And that there are those who appreciate the difficult trails.
SLX and Zee levers are the exact same with one diff, the SLX use tool free adjustment the same as XT or saint. Zee you need an Allen key. Have not tried the magura though I used to run Louise back in the day (until saint).
Try this for an awesome power combo. SLX levers with Zee caliper. I have this combo on my Patrol and it is awesome. Actually had to get used to the power as it is so much compared to just Xt brakes. Now I am used to it and it is great. No more death grip braking or blowing through corners because of late braking.
Good call on the Range as well as the fork upgrade. I went through the same dilemma last summer. I have a Dh bike for whistler and most of Cypress (cherry, sex girl, 5th as well as the east side trails) and I also had a Transition Patrol (medium frame) for Fromme and Seymour. Could not decide what to get to replace the Patrol, which had many, many days on it.
In he end I got a large Patrol aluminum frame (2017 vintage, not the new SBG 2018) and built the bike up with new and old parts (sold the old patrol M bike complete). The choice for me was perfect. I got the longer reach and wheelbase by going up a size, but otherwise the bike is perfect.
The Range has 10mm more travel in the front as well as 5mm more in the rear than the Patrol but otherwise very similar. It should be a great choice. Gotta love having the end of year deals at JH.