Do you change tyres for the summer (and other ideas to help!)

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  • Do you change tyres for the summer (and other ideas to help!)
  • jayx2a

    Do people change their tyres come the dryer weather? Did a couple of slightly longer 20 mile runs last week and on the flats and hills the Trek did start to feel a bit heavy going.

    I know that a FS is never going to be like lighting, but was wondering if a faster rolling tyre might be beneficial come the summer months.

    Currently running a High Roller II (2.3) and Ardent rear (2.25) – 29ers.

    Or should I be looking at other options such as wheels/hubs etc?

    Premier Icon Northwind

    I change for conditions rather than summer 🙂 But yeah. TBH though a HR2 and Ardent is a pretty quick pair? You could add a bit of pace with a semislick rear but not much and even in the height of summer it’s nice to have some front end bite.

    Premier Icon weeksy

    No… never.

    If it snows i WFH.


    I don’t bother. as it still rains during the summer i find that it can sometimes be just as much of a mudfest in june as it can be in January. Plus i’m lazy. Plus changing tubeless can be a bit of a pain. So i just plug away on my 2.4 nobblies regardless.

    Yes and no, I tend to go with quite all round tyres all year but bias them a bit for summer and winter. So over winter I’d have something like Purgatory’s and in Summer WTB Bronson’s. Neither is a mud tyre or dry tyre but they’re grippy or quick enough to deal with 95% of the conditions for 6 months each.

    As for everything else, yes it does make a difference, but not night and day. Lighter wheels make the bike feel lighter, more than saving the same grams elsewhere. But at the end of the day it’s marginal gains compared to the sledgehammer gains of just getting fit. If 20miles is your long ride, try extending it to 40-50miles and taking it easy. And do some shorter/harder interval based rides mid week where you go out and smash up hills and take a break between them.

    Premier Icon Alex

    I’m just about to swap my Magic Mary 2.8/Forekaster 2.6 combo off the SolarisMax for last years Rekons. Definitely makes a different on the chubbies. Probably as much weight as rolling resistance, the Rekons are pretty light.

    For other bikes tho, nope just leave what’s on there which is normally a Mary/Damf or DHF/DHR combo.

    I use the same tyres all year round due to the English weather; Maxis DHF and DHR II. Don’t think I’ve ever done a dry ride in the Peak District whatever the time of year, for example.

    I totally agree about fitness gains being far more beneficial than slight weight gains on the bike, although appreciate that not everybody has the time to put in the miles.

    Premier Icon Rubber_Buccaneer

    High Roller II (2.3) and Ardent rear (2.25)

    I do change and that would be more like my summer choice 🙂  If you’d spent the winter on a Shorty/DHR combo you’d think you’d just jumped on a rocket ship with your HR2 and Ardent


    Most folk would think that’s a pretty good combination for UK summer mountain biking.


    Yeah maybe its just fitness thing. 20 miles is good for me as only been doing 6-8 miles whilst gaining fitness and losing weight since coming back from a lung illness that kept me off a bike for 9 months.

    Lost 22 pounds now so will just keep extending the miles!


    My summer / winter tyre regime involves more / less air.

    Smorgasbord / Chunk Monkey all year round: jack of all trades (or not the right tyre, ever).

    I rode a HR2/Ardent Race combo for about 6 months, and can’t say I noticed any real-world difference in rolling resistance or bike weight when I changed to my current DHF/DHR II combo.

    Also, FWIW, my hardtail weighs about 3.75kg less than my full-sus, and I don’t feel any faster or fitter climbing hills on it!


    I change when I have a race. Been running a MM/MM combo over winter, hoping that going for racing ralph/rocket ron will make everything feel a bit snappier so kinda putting it off until as close to race day as I dare.
    (They’re on the HT at the moment, and it feels like it’s got a motor in there they roll really very fast. Not sure if I’d bother for general trail riding as they’re not as grippy, and wet days in summer do happen.)

    Premier Icon rickmeister

    Yep, Maxxis FBF and FBR off, Jumbo Jim’s on


    Do miss the old Hardtail sometimes!


    For general XC/trail riding I just leave the same tyres (Slaughter back/Ardent front)on all year round and adjust my riding style/pressures to suit conditions.Once the edge/grip goes on them they get binned.
    I don’t race anymore,so don’t fret too much about tread pattern.

    Premier Icon chakaping

    As others have said, you’re already on a decent summer combo.

    I have a Minion DHF 2.5 and Shorty 2.5 on different front wheels to swap according to conditions though, FWIW.


    Nobby Nic 2.8F and 2.6R is my all year round solution. As has been said variation in pressure to optimise things (a bit).

    Premier Icon joebristol

    As others have said it sounds quite a quick setup already.

    On my fs the winter is dhf 2.5wt front and dhr2 2.4wt rear. In the summer it’s the same front tyre but a 2.3 aggressor on the rear.

    On the hardtail the winter is Magic Mary 2.35 front and dhr2 2.3 rear. In the summer it’s chunky monkey 2.4 front and smogasbord 2.25 rear.

    I do notice the difference – the summer combos are definitely faster to accelerate.

    Premier Icon guandax

    Minion SS is the rear tyre of choice in my book. Front is always MM.

    2.6 Mary up front, spesh slaughter semi slick rear, all year.

    Premier Icon garage-dweller

    I change the rear on the old 26″ hard tail (Spesh Storm Control in winter and something slicker for summer) but leave the purgatory up front all year.

    If it’s claggy and horrid out the FS stays at home. Dam you Americans with your good weather, wide rims and lack of mud clearance! I’ve tried going narrow and mud friendly on the back of that bike but the rim is too wide really.

    Premier Icon funkmasterp

    I’m very lazy and only ever change mine when they get badly damaged or so worn out someone comments on it. Minion on front and aggressor on back is my usual combo.

    Premier Icon molgrips

    I used to with 26″ wheels and tubes. But on 29 I find that the grip on even Ralph’s where I live (South Wales) is good enough all year. In winter I just stick to the rocky trails of which there are plenty; the claggy ones are miserable regardless of tyres and tend to stay claggy anyway; and the loam remains loamy in all but the worst conditions.

    TBH no. I seem to be good at finding the wettest trails in Britain, even in summer. More often than not we have the trails to ourselves in these prime conditions! Can remember ankle deep water cascading down one trail in June, looked more like a river it was glorious. Oh and a amusing moment when my mate, ended up wadding through waist deep water on some hill top moor. Obviously we let him forge a path the rest us didn’t follow!

    Those semi slick things are no use up north, unless you only ride park or don’t leave the house till it’s been dry for 3-5 days. The lightest tyre I’ve ever run till worn out is a Bonty SE4 and TBH it’s the lightest tread pattern I’d entertain. I now prefer a Michelin Wild AM over it.


    shorty stays on most of the year, but i swap it if i get to go to sunnier climes… my rear tyre is seasonal, getting chunkier in the winter time…


    What sort of trek? Full sus can be fast, if it’s a fast one!

    As people say you’re on a fast summer combo….for an enduro bike. You don’t say, but I assume single ply both ends?

    A fast combo would be ikon front crossmark rear say. HR/Ardent is like riding through treacle in comparison, but then I’d not run this combo on a big bike.

    Premier Icon nickc

    Front gets changed from a Shorty to DHF about now. Rear gets changed from a DHR  to a Minion SS only when its been dry for weeks and looks like it will stay like that… My Minion SS is pretty unworn… I think it got more miles last year than the previous 3 combined!

    Premier Icon russyh

    Magic Mary up front for me all year, rock razor for about a month the Hans Dampf on back rest of the time. Prefer the consistency. Then the constant change….

    Premier Icon deadkenny

    No… never.

    +1 that. Tyres for all conditions and rare I feel they’re out of depth with the conditions (Minion DHF front and Ardent rear recently, though now running Aggressor which is still fast rolling but more grippy when it needs to be). I just adjust riding style to fit, and maybe avoid riding through a swamp. I do live where there’s a choice of soil types and can avoid wet chalk/clay though that is a problem the year round, not winter, and not many tyres cope with that stuff anyway plus it’s a nightmare to clean the bike.

    Would bin a HR2 though, just generally. Draggy beast.

    If it snows i WFH.

    If it snows, I go riding 😀 (though I may technically be “WFH” 😉 ).

    Premier Icon stevied

    I do, but I’m a tyre whore and like trying different things 🙂
    Gone from a Michelin Wild Enduro/Force AM pair to DHF/Griffin for the drier months ahead. Noticeably quicker pedaling, much less drag.
    The Griffin is a surprise to me as I wasn’t sure what to expect but it’s fast rolling and has real grip when needed. Looks like it’s being discontinued though.

    Those semi slick things are no use up north, unless you only ride park or don’t leave the house till it’s been dry for 3-5 days

    Meanwhile, in the actual north, ie Scotland, they’re fine.


    I guess it depends on where you ride. Around here (Woburn), it’s very sandy and the trails are transformed once the drier weather arrives, so it makes sense to change tyres. It’s a 30 minute ride to get there for me, mostly bridleway. so I really notice the benefit of a lighter tyre.

    Premier Icon colournoise

    Since 26+ tyres are a bit thin on the ground I’ve pretty much stayed with the same combo (Ranger rear, Dirt Wizard front) for the last 18 months or so. Good compromise between rolling speed and grip. One you get used to the back stepping out the only conditions that truly defeat them are thick claggy mud.


    I’ve changed 2 tyres recently, one because I’d pretty much worn it out and the other because I split it. On its second ride.

    I won’t change them again until they’re worn.

    Premier Icon roverpig

    Same combo as @russyh except it’s my rock razor that stays on almost all year and only switch to HD if it’s been properly wet for a while. As @Nobeerinthefridge says, the semi-slick seems to work just fine up here (especially for the mincing about that I do)

    DHF on front year round and a dhr / minion ss on rear this winter and most of last summer,
    I want to go back to an ardent race on the rear but I seem to recall after months of dry it rained once and my back wheel was all over the place, so I changed it.

    I bagged a set of Maxxis tomahawk 2.3 DD EXO 3c for £8 a piece so really need to see what they are like, reviews are few and far between

    Hob Nob

    I generally run a DHF year round on the front. occasionally when racing & I am motivated enough to swap when it’s really bad weather, i’ll run a Shorty, but that’s the extent of my front tyre choices.

    The rear does have a bit of a swap around. I bounce between a DHR2, Ardent & SS. As it’s been dry the Ardent has been on there for a while. It’s not the most grippy, but it is fast & light for it’s size & seems to be holding up so far. I enjoy it’s (relative to the DHR2) lack of grip, the speed makes up for it & makes corners great fun.

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