Help – Full sus for the Peak District

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  • Help – Full sus for the Peak District
  • Premier Icon debasergizmo
    Subscriber

    Hi,
    I’m currently researching my next bike and I’m about to move to Peak District. What bike would people recommend for weekly rides in that area? I also want a bike that I can take to a bike park if needs be. I was thinking about the new SC Hightower as it seems like a all-rounder but any suggestions are welcome. My budget is 4k so there are a lot of options.
    Cheers,

    Onzadog
    Member

    There’s no one right bike for the Peak, it depends what you’re doing. Sometimes I’ll ride an Ibis Mojo HD3, sometimes a Transition Vanquish. Whatever ride I’m doing, I can do on either bike.

    Airdrop and Cotic are two local brands that have Peak riding as their focus.

    Blackflag
    Member

    Well i have the 2018 Hightower and that’s pretty much perfect. I ride in the peaks all the time. But I also have a Pace 129 hardtail and that’s very good too. But of the two i’d say the hightower (mine is 150 / 135) is the better for all day rides with a few rock gardens thrown in.

    jackthedog
    Member

    If you’re moving to the Peak, and you have that budget, I’d suggest buying whatever Santa Cruz works best for you, and more importantly, buying it from 18 Bikes in Hope. Their service is second to none, they look after their customers very well, and they’re slap bang in the middle of all the good riding.

    Premier Icon BadlyWiredDog
    Subscriber

    Peak riding, yeah, you absolutely must have a Santa Cruz preferably with at least 160mm of travel at either end. Don’t forget to push it up climbs and to make sure you don’t go too fast on the downhills, you’ll fit right in 🙂

    Seriously, I’d start by riding whatever you have now – it’ll work fine, we used to ride rigid steel with cantis on the very same trails – and see what you feel you need when you’re a bit more acclimatised. The likes of 18 and Sonder over in Hope / Hathersage respectively, and Cotic too, are all local, good people and do demo bike so you can work out what you prefer.

    Fwiw, a lot of folk quite happily ride hardtails round here, some of them really bloody fast too. It’s arguably as much or more fun as steaming straight over everything in your path on the latest new-fangled full susser.

    Yours mostly on a Sonder Transmitter / Ragley Ti in the Peak.

    Blackflag
    Member

    Rather than this descending into just tedious stereotypes of the kind of people that ride certain brands. i’d also offer up the following of my experiences of peak riding over many years…

    Assuming by “peaks riding” we mean the classics around Castleton, Hope, Edale, Ladybower etc. then the main thing is that it’s quite rocky in places. So for me this means 29r wheels are an advantage and a full suss is helpful in terms of all day comfort. As you can cover a lot of distance and there is a fair bit of steep climbing then i’d also suggest not going too “big” in terms of travel (I think Enduro bikes are a bit too heavy/slow/sluggish) despite the fact you will see loads of people on Capras or Nomads having lots of fun.

    Premier Icon simondbarnes
    Subscriber

    What have you got at the moment? I’d suggest riding that a few times after you move and then you’ll see what kind of riding you’ll be doing and what bike is likely to suit you.

    FWIW, I ride a hardtail with 100mm forks in the Peak District.

    I ride a 160mm bike currently – I have ridden 130mm / 140 /150mm too. I don’t think brands really matter, get one you like. There are pros and cons of different travels of course but you have to have an awful lot of travel to be overbiked everywhere in the peak – I.e. you can make an argument for 180mm if you want to hammer down stuff and winch up.

    But ignore the weirdos saying they ride hardtails ( 😉 ), there’s really no good reason to do that in 2019.

    Premier Icon BadlyWiredDog
    Subscriber

    Rather than this descending into just tedious stereotypes of the kind of people that ride certain brands. i’d also offer up the following of my experiences of peak riding over many years…

    I was only joking. My serious advice was to try Peak riding on whatever you have now and then make a more informed decision and test ride some stuff locally.

    Everyone’s different. Forget all the ‘overbiked’ stuff, the reality is that most half-decent riders can ride most legal Peak District trails on anything, the difference the bike makes is both in outright speed, but also in your experience of the trail. There’s no right or wrong answer, it just depends what you want from your riding. I’ve ridden the same trails on a cross bike a Trek Full Stache, which is a bit like a monster truck with two wheels. Both were entertaining in completely different ways at opposite ends of the travel spectrum.

    Anyway…

    Premier Icon kula72
    Subscriber

    I ride a Californinan branded mid-travel 29er here now. I did the local brand thing, I wasn’t faster. I did the local shop thing, negligable benefit. I don’t think there is a Peaks bike. It’s just the one you feel most comfortable on. And forget about Peaks tyres too, as it’s mud/rock/gloop/dust, sometimes in the same day.

    Cotic. Designed for and developed and tested in the Peak District. Though other bikes are available and perfectly capable of course.

    Premier Icon BadlyWiredDog
    Subscriber

    Oh fwiw, plus sized tyres work quite nicely on a lot of the rockier stuff where there are precious few proper corners, but lots of rocky chunder.

    Full sus defo and a good climber, you will be doing lots of it. It’s a bit of a Lake District lite but still has plenty of big hills to get up. You can of course ride everything in the peaks on a hardtail, but the rockiest trails will be very tiring and difficult to ride the most direct lines flat out!

    Get as much travel as you can for a reasonable weight, that will most probably be up to 160mm. You won’t always need it, but if there’s little to no weight penalty and the pedalling platform is good then why not!

    samuelr
    Member

    I like my Trek remedy for riding in the peak. I also enjoyed my mk5 cotic soul.

    Premier Icon MartynS
    Subscriber

    4K budget isn’t bad….

    i guess any “trail” bike will do the job. I’ve had a GT STS, a Turner 5spot and now a pivot Mach 5.7. All of them I’ve peddled up and rattled down all the peak stuff.

    As mentioned Cotic do great FS bikes, although I think they look a bit mmm…

    i keep looking at the airdrop edit v3. A mate (waves at onzadog) tried one and really rated it..

    i really like the Pivot but I think the Mach 5.5 (the 27.5 version) is out of your price range as a whole bike, but if you have bits already to swap onto s new frame it becomes manageable..

    Premier Icon Garry_Lager
    Subscriber

    The Peak is a bit of a squashed Lakes – it’s rocky but you’re not playing with big vert ascent / descent, a 20 min climb would be long for the Peak. Ironically this means you need a better pedalling bike, as almost all of the climbs are rideable – so a lot of Peak epics are really attritional, not sharp like the Lakes. Winching and plummeting on a big bike isn’t the game (although some folk no doubt do it).
    There’s also not a lot of demanding technical riding on the bridleway routes (as a generalisation – the full national park is a large area). Fellas saying they ride a 100mm HT aren’t grandstanding or owt – I’d prefer a short travel FS myself for comfort but a HT would rarely be out of its depth on the classic Peak stuff.

    Premier Icon debasergizmo
    Subscriber

    Thanks a lot for all the advice. I currently have a SC Chameleon 29er which is a whole lotta fun but I can imagine I will feel beat up if I ride it regularly in the peaks. I like the look of the Jeffsy, SC Hightower, Spectral and the Ibis Ripley too. Lots of choices. I want something that can climb but gives me confidence on the way down. Oh and can be chucked around when needs ne…not asking much eh. Time for some demos I reckon. Cheers folks

    chevychase
    Member

    Got a Nomad and a Cotic Soda hardtail. Ride both in the peak a lot. Both great fun 🙂

    Premier Icon cp
    Subscriber

    currently have a SC Chameleon 29er

    Sounds ideal!

    Genuinely, I’d ride that until you get used to it up here and understand what your ride will entail. There’s a LOT of variety from very rocky to very sloppy.. There’s plenty of pedally bits between the good stuff, and as has been mentioned, few of the climbs are all that brutal so you can pretty much ride all the time rather than pushing the ups and bombing down the downs.

    I’ve ridden everything from fully rigid single speed to 140mm full suspension 29er. My go to choice is 100mm fs 29er for most rides.

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