Results 1 to 23 of 23
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    6

    Just starting out at 66 years old

    I am 66 and took up dirt bike riding less than two years ago. Geez, cut out that laughing. Now I want to add mountain biking in order to help my balance, cardio, strength and weight loss. I weigh 220 (after losing 18 pounds) and have 30-40 more to go. It hurts to admit but I am not very strong anymore.
    After researching, I was trying to decide between a Specialized Camber Comp in 29" and an Airborne HobGoblin, also 29". Today I visited my LBS and he showed me a new leftover Specialized 2010 Stumpjumper FSR Elite that he would sell for $1500. It is 26" and I would like opinions on the bike. The reviews are great but aren't they always. Is the 2010 technology too outdated and would I do better going for one of the 29" bikes? Thanks for the help.

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    6
    Forgot to mention that I ride in New England, land of the rock and roots. I probably will ride different trails while avoiding the technical ones. Out for fun and will never compete.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Pau11y's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    5,621
    YOU ROCK!

    I'd go newer long travel 29er...Kona Satori, Santa Cruz Tallboy LTa/c, Spec Enduro 29. Reason being is they're REALLY forgiving, unbelievably efficient, and can make mole hills of mountains! These bikes have a minimum speed, but they let you get up to and keep that speed w/o much effort. I'd also suggest mixing in some DH sized part...specifically a stubby stem and a nice wide bar, something like 70mm/750mm, Easton Haven/Havoc stem/bar, respectively. Something like those Light-Bicycle carbon rims will also help w/ the big wagon wheel's flex.
    Hey, have fun building and riding! And, no matter how late you joined the posse!

    Edit: Here's my pony...SUCH an unbelievably fun bike!
    Just starting out at 66 years old-p4pb8766219.jpg
    Naysayers never apologize. Critics go to their grave thinking everyone else is wrong.
    ╭∩╮( . )╭∩╮

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: socalMX's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    2,127
    Totally awesome! Check out this guys vid. He rides our local bike park at 65 years young. Jack Cam...Crashes included - YouTube

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Pau11y's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    5,621
    Quote Originally Posted by socalMX View Post
    Totally awesome! Check out this guys vid. He rides our local bike park at 65 years young. Jack Cam...Crashes included - YouTube
    OMG! He needs a wider bar!
    Naysayers never apologize. Critics go to their grave thinking everyone else is wrong.
    ╭∩╮( . )╭∩╮

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    91
    I'm with you! I just got my first mountain bike this spring at age 65! I chose a hardtail Cannondale Trail SL 1 29er and I love it. I've tipped over a couple times, but that hasn't deterred me a bit. Fortunately, I live within riding distance of a very nice set of trails (Lebanon Hills Park in Eagan, Minnesota) - technical, challenging, but enough to give a good run for my money. The only recommendation I can make would be to get a 29er.

    I hope we both have another 20 years of good riding left in us!

    Dean

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    6
    Hey guys, thanks for the suggestions but those three bikes are more than I should spend. However, the reviews sure are impressive. Dean, does your body take a beating with your hardtail? Originally that is the route I was going to go but with all of our rocks and roots I thought a FS would be easier on the body.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    91
    D-dog1,

    Thanksa for reading my reply. First, I need to mention that I work part-time at REI (a great retirement gig), so my I started looking for a bike, I was limited to the brands that we sell - fortunately, there were some nice bikes available. When I started looking, I talked with a lot of people with a lot of experience, and the recommendations/opinions between a hardtail or full suspension was 50/50. At 6'0" and 230lbs, a 29er was almost a given since that size would likely ride more smoothly. And since we don't have the massive downhills in Minnesota (compared to those you would find in the mountains) I felt I might not need a FS bike. Plus, I felt I could get a lighter bike (which would help on uphills) with better components if I stuck with a hardtail. But I figured if I didn't like the hardtail, I could sell it and get a full suspension bike.

    So far, I have been very happy with the hardtail. It's quite responsive and handles just about everything quite well. The trails I ride have quite an array of obstacles including the basic rocks and roots, and I just get out of the saddle for those - no problems. I will likely never do any jumps (at least not intentionally), but the other types of obstacles - rock gardens, washboard sections, exaggerated speed bumps, berms, etc. seem to be no problem. When I'm done with a ride, my body doesn't feel beat up - just tired. I have some knee issues, but those haven't been a problem biking. If I had a bad back or some other issue where I needed a FS bike, I'd go that route. I've crashed a couple times this year, but that would have happened regardless of what type of bike I was on. I do push myself fairly hard, but as you know, that means something different to someone in their 60s. I try to get to the end of my limits, but I also try not to go beyond. The more I ride, the more comfortable the bike gets.

    Keep in mind that my experience is limited. But I have no regrets about getting the hardtail - it has been a ton of fun and it is a really nice bike. I hope to try a FS bike later this season so I can have a greater frame of reference - maybe I'll fall in love with them. But so far, so good!

    Dean

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: guamjim's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    91
    Welcome to the club. I started last year at the age of 60 with an Anthem X 29er and have since picked up a used road bike, as well. Don't rule out racing, I've started with a couple of sprint triathlons, racing with my Anthem. I'm training for the Xterra here next year.

    I'm in training for retirement!

  10. #10
    two wheel whore
    Reputation: Shmoo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    472
    For your terrain, I'd suggest a full suspension 29er. The Airborne and the Camber you mention should work well. It might be easier to deal with the Camber with your LBS, should you run into problems.

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    6
    Thank you for your helpful suggestion. My LBS is a good one, great owner and helpful and knowledgable staff. Very good reputation. I probably will go through them.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Simplemind's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    620
    67 here and riding a 29er FS. I'd recommend 29 also as it rolls over everything (almost) especially if you can keep your speed up.
    Be careful of Strava, it can get you hurt.

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    5,797
    Do you have any Giant dealers?
    The Trance X 29er would be a good option too, and you might find one on clearance in your price range.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    6
    Thanks, I will check that out. The biggest problem for me is that all bike reviews are so positive. Even individuals not connected to magazines or web sites all love their bikes. Maybe most bikes today are quite good. I am close to pulling the trigger on a 2013 Kona Satori. Not sure if I can state prices but I can get brand new for $550 off. I rode a demo Satori that is $450 cheaper than the new one but it may be one size too large. The dealer said it fit me but another said I should be one size smaller. Time to measure myself.
    And then their is the above mentioned Santa Cruz Tallboy lt with 10mm less travel and the Specialized Stumpjumper fsr Evo 29 and also ...... Whew, it's good that I enjoy
    researching.

  15. #15
    Total Goober
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    853
    Skipping the wheel size conversation (I ride a 29er, but concede to the disadvantages), I recommend buying from your LBS, no matter what you get. It's nice to have someone to help you when you're just getting started. 2010 models should be just fine, just make sure the bike feels comfortable. A disreputable shop might try to unload something on you that isn't the best option, just to get it off the floor.
    Quote Originally Posted by Fuglio View Post
    You guys suck im all bummed now

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    5,797
    Quote Originally Posted by BigSteve in CO View Post
    Skipping the wheel size conversation (I ride a 29er, but concede to the disadvantages), I recommend buying from your LBS, no matter what you get. It's nice to have someone to help you when you're just getting started. 2010 models should be just fine, just make sure the bike feels comfortable. A disreputable shop might try to unload something on you that isn't the best option, just to get it off the floor.
    Yes, all the brands mentioned above make good bikes, so look at what your LBS has first, and unless they don't have the right size (as mentioned in one post) you can't go too wrong.

    The reason I mentioned Giant is their suspension is as good as the boutique bikes, and they often have the best value even compared to Spec, Kona etc, so if you have any Giant dealers nearby, check them out too.

  17. #17
    Ow!
    Reputation: clydecrash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    701
    Ddob, first, good for you. You are going to have a blast.

    Have you rented a few bikes and rode them on some dirt trails? Actually riding them on dirt (not the dirt lot behind the shop) will give you an idea if a 26er or 29er, HT or FS, might be better for you. I am 6'3" and only ride 26". I rented a nice 29er HT a few years ago (Specialized) and compared it with my 26er HT. It was fine, but not different enough to warrant changing to a new tire size (I have many 26" wheels and tires). I think between the 26er and 29er, it will be whatever bike feels the best/fits you the best.

    Between HT and FS, that does depend on you and your trails. Here in southern Arizona, all I pretty much ride are rocks, and more rocks. If I had to have only one bike (god forbid), it would be a FS. But my HTs are so much fun--I just cannot ride them as long as my FS. And, as stated, you can get a HT with better components for the price as compared with FS.

    And think about the future. The more you ride, the more technical riding you will enjoy. Maybe there is a limit as we get older. That doesn't stop us from trying though. At 56, I will be hitting the DH trails at Angel Fire, NM, again this summer. Of course, riding down those trails, I do not feel like an 56yo, but like a kid.

    Oh, and that 2010 model--newer models likely are not much better. If it fits, right price, good components, and warranty--why not? Most bikes in the same price range are about the same quality. It really does just matter which one feels the best to you. Have fun.

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    6
    Thanks for all the help. Saturday (tax free weekend) I pickup my new Kona Satori. With 2014 bikes on the way, my dealer was willing to work with me alot on the price of the bike. Tomorrow I plan on building a PVC rack for the back of my truck. Already have the plans and materials. I purchased all the gear that I'll need to start out such as a helmet, eyewear, shoes etc. No wait, I still need to get pain pills for Saturday night. Thanks for the help.

  19. #19
    mtbr member
    Reputation: wsmac's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    521
    I'm just a young pup at 53 but I thought I'd pass on what little knowledge I have concerning mtbing over 50...

    You may already be this way, but I can't say enough about "riding your own ride".
    What I mean is...

    You may be up in front of a group of riders, in the middle, or in the back... but you should be enjoying the ride wherever you are in the pack.

    Your gear is your own... no need to apologize for it, explain it, or even boast too much about it.

    There is no shame in 'Hike-and-Bike' when starting out... or even years later if a knee or other body part starts to ache too much on a ride, or your lungs and heart just aren't into that "Cardiac Climb" of a hill on that particular day.


    Keep your eyes out for a hardtail... it's really nice to have at least two bikes because there may (probably will) come a day your main ride is in the shop and you really want to ride.
    I have a 29 HT and I don't get all beat up even riding trails I'd rather ride my FS bike on.
    It's simpler, cheaper to maintain to a certain degree, and you could always loan it out to a friend of the right size in case you want to corrup... I mean encourage a new rider!

    Glad you found your bike at your price! Hope the Satori rides well for you for as long as you need it to!
    When you build your PU bed bike rack... be sure it'll hold 4-5 bikes.
    You probably think the extra spaces are for friends... they'll eventually be taken up by the other bikes you 'need' down the line!
    LOL

    Most of the guys 60+ I ride with have gradually changed over to FS 29ers and they love 'em!
    After riding Willamette Pass last month... I now need a DH rig! OH YEAH!

    I'm warning you! For someone who just had to take up dirt biking AND mtbing.... you've already succumbed to the disease... now you just have to accept the things you have to do to satisfy the urges!

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    148
    You sixty something guys are awesome. Good for all of ya. You always hear people say, I'm too old for this or that, I say BS. I'm 40 now and plan to keep on doing what I do now until my body just won't let me do it anymore. You guys are an inspiration, ride on!

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    3,452
    Quote Originally Posted by Pau11y View Post
    OMG! He needs a wider bar!
    First thing I saw, reminded me of my narrow racer boy bars I had on my 2000 Sworks, could never ride bars that narrow anymore.
    13 Lenz Lunchbox punkass

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation: masterofnone's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,123
    I think you should go straight into dirtjumping and downhill. Forget all that lame-ass cross country crap and embrace the dark side. Haha, seriously, welcome to the tribe. As far as the satori goes, if it fits you go for it. I have a '12 with a 2x chainguide and shorter stem and its a quiver killer for sure.

  23. #23
    mtbr member
    Reputation: gcappy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    1,463
    Your age is not a limiter. I ride with two guy's that are both 78. They rip it and the only place I can keep up with them is on a long climb.

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 5
    Last Post: 05-01-2012, 12:16 AM
  2. Replies: 9
    Last Post: 04-07-2012, 11:21 AM
  3. Starting DH
    By barefootdan in forum Downhill - Freeride
    Replies: 29
    Last Post: 03-13-2012, 07:01 AM
  4. Starting Out
    By FMF8404 in forum Beginner's Corner
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 10-04-2011, 03:36 PM
  5. Starting Out
    By kfguy in forum Beginner's Corner
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: 06-30-2011, 08:30 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •