Salsa launches the new Salsa Stormchaser – a singlespeed gravel bike.
Priced at £1200 for a frameset, this is no student hack bike. The marketing says it’s for when the mud is so bad it would break your derailleur, although it is compatible with a 1x geared drivetrain. The aluminium frame comes in seven sizes, and it’ll be available in the UK as a frameset only. It comes in this golden/bronze colour only. Shall we call it ‘golden hour wheat’?
Add a dropper post if you want (if you can face getting up anything steep enough to warrant it), and use the ‘alternator’ drop outs to adjust your chainstay to between 435 and 450mm. Build it up with maximum 50mm tyres, or 45mm tyres with mudguards, 700C or 650B – there’s a claimed 40% more tyre clearance than a Salsa Warbird. There’s certainly a lot to play with that will affect the behaviour and handling of the bike.
Larger sizes will have three bottle cage mounts in the main triangle of the frame, smaller sizes have two. Further mounts are provided on the top tube and underside of the downtube, and the frame and fork are compatible with Salsa Wanderlust and Down Under racks.
So, it’s a singlespeed, but it doesn’t have to be. Which is much more practical than the headline grabbing marketing. It’s still definitely a gravel bike though – those tyre sizes aren’t mountain bike territory. Is it just what you’ve been looking for, perhaps for the South Downs? All that sticky chalky gloop… Or does this belong in Kansas, riding mile after mile of straight gravel roads through endless farmland? At least, that’s how we imagine it.
If this is on your wish list, it’s distributed in the UK by Lyon.