When we first regaled a certain acquaintance with our vision for a free online magazine, we were met with skepticism: “Well, what are you going to do when the internet dies out?” We were naturally stunned, but this guy considered it a genuine potential. It’s much like the same doubt that we still hear fairly regularly: “What are you going to do when the enduro hype is over?” Simple answer: enduro isn’t hype.
The word ‘enduro’ is bandied around for various (mis-)marketing campaigns far too often. There’s a flurry of products like enduro helmets, enduro backpacks, and even enduro grips. We’re just waiting patiently for the launch of enduro pizza cutters and enduro air fresheners for cars. Aren’t bikes the only real product that can be identified as enduro? Now we’re not talking strict categories based on suspension: we’re talking about how it rides. This issue’s group test of high-end enduro bikes was a mixed bag, spanning the spectrum of wheel sizes, suspension travel, and styles all apparently pretty different if we purely went by their stats on paper. In reality, however, the results were pretty clear, so check out this issue to see which bike tops the current top-flight enduro market.
If there’s one brand that have been part and parcel of mountain biking trends over the decades, then it’s Rocky Mountain Bikes. Celebrating their 35th anniversary this year, the brand has arguably reached cult status, with a following that many manufacturers only dream of. We paid them a visit.
What’s the secret behind good geometry? Listening to many riders and marketing experts, you’d think it was a simple case of adding the numbers together. But each figure individually can potentially cut into the fun reserves, be it an overly short top-tube, brutally steep head angle, or excessive millimeters for the chainstays. We’ve analyzed more than twenty-five of the current most popular bikes to determine the recipe for successful geometry.
“Pessimists have the best sort of life: either they’re right or they get a nice surprise!” OK, it’s a bold statement, and we admit that our editor Trevor isn’t all doom-and-gloom, but even he wouldn’t deny that he has a bit of an aversion to new technology! We sometimes wonder if he’s submitting documents written by candlelight on his typewriter. This antipathy made him the ideal candidate to pit himself against the legendary Megavalanche on Alpe d’Huez. There was one twist, however: he’d be riding it on an E-MTB.
But let’s go back to the question of hype – and whether it’s always deserved. Freeride legend Matt Hunter stands firmly on the other side of the well-trodden fence when it comes to Whistler. He’s travelled the globe hunting down the sickest trails, only to conclude that his favourite trails are in his backyard. We went out for a ride in Kamloops with him to see if he was overhyping or not.
As we barbequed on the edge of the river one evening with him and his mate Matty, I was struck with the prevailing sense of what exactly mountain biking means – and why we do it. Friendship, fun, adrenaline, flow, challenging ourselves, and getting the opportunity for seriously one-off experiences. And there’s just one word to sum that up: enduro! It’s more than hype!
As of right now, all the exciting articles can be downloaded from our interactive iPad or iPhone app, and they’ll make their way onto the website over the next few weeks. Have fun reading!
Did you enjoy this article? If so, we would be stoked if you decide to support us with a monthly contribution. By becoming a supporter of ENDURO, you will help secure a sustainable future for high-quality mountain bike journalism. Click here to learn more.