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  1. #1
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    Newbie help with 29er tire choice for wet, rocky, mud...

    I looked at the reviews and tried searching, but haven't come up with anything conclusive. The best I've come up with so far is the IRD fire xc pro. So I'm asking for opinions. What's a good set of tires for the wet, slippery rocks and mud conditions of WV? Seems like most of the reviews are based on dry, rocky hardpack conditions of the western states.
    thanks, Scott

  2. #2
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    As a UK rider I get to spend a lot of time riding in less than ideal conditions.

    I've been using Conti Mountain Kings and really like them. Great in the mud, clear well and not bad on rocks either.

  3. #3
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    Take a look at the Specialized Captiain tires. I'm in KY, they have worked well this winter through the slop. They have a nice, fairly open tread design that still rolls well. I use it as a rear tire only, it is also not very wide- 2.0 width.
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  4. #4
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    Those of us who ride regularly in the wet, rooty, rocky, muddy conditions of the Northwestern states are very fond of the Kenda Klaw and the Kenda Nevegal. Nevegal has more volume, Klaw is by a significant margin still the best 29" tire for all-out mud.
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  5. #5
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    Conti mountain kings shed mud like crazy and have great traction, esp in wet conditions. I really don't like the knobs so much in the dry, though they are fine.

  6. #6
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    conti mountain kings... only get the 2.4 though... they're more like a 2.3
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  7. #7
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    I switched from the Klaw to the Mountain King and find it much better.

  8. #8
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    Mountain King

    Quote Originally Posted by Random Drivel
    Conti mountain kings shed mud like crazy and have great traction, esp in wet conditions. I really don't like the knobs so much in the dry, though they are fine.

    agree. great tire for what you are describing, but not the best dry tire. the knobs are kinda soft, so they wander in the dry a bit and also you might want to up the pressure just a bit. here is my review:

    Continental Mountain King 2.4 29er Tire Review

    Continental’s Mountain King 2.4 tears through wet mucky conditions. The tire has aggressive knobs that are well spaced to shed mud and rotting leaves. In messy conditions, cornering is superb and steering is predicable. The rubber compound is soft and tacky, adhering well to wet roots. The angular knobs dig deep into loamy soils and loose gravel. The tires are light (710 grams), really light for the volume (thread width is 2.35 inches and casing is approximately 2.15 inches). These are the best wet weather tire I’ve ridden and they performed well in gravel and sand as well.

    However, they tend to wander a bit on hardpack and the tread pattern, combined with the soft rubber, just doesn’t engage well on rock faces or pavement. There is also a bit more rolling resistance than some of the other tires in its class. The thin sidewalls also give some concern to durability, though I rode the tires hard through rocks and roots and never had an issue. The tire feels a bit bouncy at 40 psi. Typically, I would run a lower pressure, especially in the front, but the knobs and tire casing are soft and a higher pressure is needed to maximize engagement and increase steering predictability.

    Strengths:

    Great traction in wet and mucky conditions, as well as loose soils and gravel
    Light
    Big volume
    Predictable steering and cornering
    Splendid climbing tire
    Inexpensive

    Weaknesses:

    Wanders on rocks and hardpack
    Durability (Maybe?)
    Rolling resistance
    Need to run higher pressures

    Bottomline:

    These are my wet winter tire of choice. They claw up muddy climbs, straighten out slimy turns, and hold a line in loose soil conditions of all types. They are one of the lightest big volume tires out there, and there is no sacrifice in performance. They are a great value at $40 too. Continental has done a superb job again.

    EDIT: i've been running these for three months now, no durability issues.

  9. #9
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    Ramps might be the ticket in WV. They can sort of clog here in Kentuckiana, but all tires do eventually. I still run them on my SS because on the hard pack they do well for a full knobbie and they have good cush. I used to live in Pa and didn't have sticky clay issues unless riding around bodies of water so I'm assuming that maybe most of the mountain mud is not as tacky in WV as it is in the Ohio river basin where I live. I'm running a Fire XC on the back of my El Cap but may take it off because it's kind of slow when the trail becomes tackified. Great traction and seemingly tough. I wouldn't hesitate to run them tubeless in the mountains with my 230lb weight.

  10. #10
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    We eat ramps here in WV...

    wild leeks that is. I assume you mean the panaracer rampage? Funny you should mention ramps though because ramp season is right around the corner and everybody and his uncle will be out in the woods looking for them.
    Scott

  11. #11
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    I've only used Nevegals and Mountain Kings
    The Nevegals were poor enough for me to order Mountain Kings from the States.
    The Mountain kings are an excellent all round tyre. So far they've done everything better and faster than Nevegals which are skiidy on the front for Wales winters. The two tyres come out exactly the same width.
    What the Mountain Kings are not is a specific mud tyre. They cope well, but Panaracer Trailrakers are better but not made for 29ers. I don't think there is a true mud specific 29er tyre yet though Continental are rumoured to be making a "Mud King"

  12. #12
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    Wink Yes, I meant the Panaracer Rampage

    Quote Originally Posted by WVscott
    wild leeks that is. I assume you mean the panaracer rampage? Funny you should mention ramps though because ramp season is right around the corner and everybody and his uncle will be out in the woods looking for them.
    Scott
    Off topic - can you recommend a place to ride close to the Kentucky border. Please don't hold the fact that I am a Cards fan against me.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by singlespeedstu
    As a UK rider I get to spend a lot of time riding in less than ideal conditions.

    I've been using Conti Mountain Kings and really like them. Great in the mud, clear well and not bad on rocks either.
    I will second the Mountain King 2.4. Best 29er mudder so far and handles wet rocks/roots well.
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  14. #14
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    I try to avoid mud, but when I do run into it, I've found the Fire to pack a bit (though not as badly as the 26er version), and the Bonty ACX to work very well and clear quickly.

    In fact, I started using the ACX because they came with the bike, and I wanted to try the Bonty TLR tubeless system. The more I ride these tires, the more I believe they are one of the best all-rounders out there.

    But if you leave mud out of the equation, the Fire is still my favorite do-it-all tire.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    I will second the Mountain King 2.4. Best 29er mudder so far and handles wet rocks/roots well.
    Front and rear?

    Have you compared the Mountain King as a rear mud tire to the rear Klaw or the Michelin XC AT?
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  16. #16
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    Well I ride predominantly on wet rocky rooty trails and I really am enjoying the Nevegals run tubeless at about 20ish psi. Confidence inspiring and thats what I'm after at the moment, our trails are a bit muddy but not sticky mud.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    I will second the Mountain King 2.4. Best 29er mudder so far and handles wet rocks/roots well.
    How does the 2.2 do in those conditions? And how do the Conti's compare to the Michelin AT?
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirt_Diggler
    agree. great tire for what you are describing, but not the best dry tire. the knobs are kinda soft, so they wander in the dry a bit and also you might want to up the pressure just a bit.
    I could not have said it better; nice review

    For dry conditions I have switched to the WTB Stout.

  19. #19
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    Tis' the season, Mud Tire Thread

    2 pages of discussion on mud/winter tires. Enjoy
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