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  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by sirsam84 View Post
    My favorite bike for socal is my Ventana el cap/ Zeus b9er. Also have a 2013 Kona process (26 inch version) which flat out rips...feels like a mini DH bike (drops up to 5 feet, which is the biggest I've done so far) feel like nothing under my 260 lbs, and it climbs quite well considering its downhill performance. I've heard even better things about the 2014 processes....would probably recommend doing the 153, as it would be better for snow summit and still great for anything xc or am around here...
    Thanks. I demoed the Process 153 this week (to get a feel for the 134, which was not available) and it was impressively fun for a longer-travel rig. It did "leave a smile on my face". Drives itself going downhill..."point-and-shoot" is an accurate description. Easy to get airborne, pedaled uphill as well as several high-end 140mm bikes I've demoed...but for me I think it might be a bit too much for around here--and for the 6-7 days a year I can get to a downhill park it probably makes sense to rent a full downhill bike. I could see how someone would go the other way though, the 153 is still capable of providing some fun factor on local, typical terrain...and you'll never feel under gunned when you get to the fast and rough.

  2. #27
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    Pivot mach 6, decent in pedaling uphill even with the rear shock wide open and it totally rips downhill - the faster you go the better. The cable routing is annoying though, you will go down the hill faster than normal making you hate the climbs even more.

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by FoShizzle View Post
    i am sure its a fine bike but because probably the best rider i have ever ridden with really does not like ellsworth and tony was apparently mean-spirited to him, i cant personally endorse ellsworth. i know aquaholic to be quite sensitive but in this case i dont think he was exaggerating tony's behavior.

    i am glad you like your bicycle though
    There are a lot of Tony stories out there and most of them are true.

    On the bike question myself and all of my riding friends are on 160 bikes and have similar riding goals of cruise the ups and smash the downs. Really no penalty any longer to ride the bigger bikes unless you are comparing to a HT. Several of them have tried to switch to bikes like the Mach 429, Solo, etc but they always end up back on the longer travel. Strava times are the same going up and faster going down.

    Specific bikes to look at would be the Mach 6, Enduro 29 and Nomad right now. If you are taller you are probably going to like the Nomad fit the best. I have an HDR and Mach 6 in my garage and a Nomad waiting at the shop once I make it home. Also had an E29 earlier this year. All great bikes and hard to go wrong with any of them.

  4. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by RTSO2112 View Post
    Stop blaming your poor bike...it's the skillllllzzzzzzz of the rider!
    hahaha. Negatory.

    Climbing fast takes Fitness NOT Skill.

    Descending fast takes Skill.
    Ride Bikes, Drink Craft Beer, Repeat.

  5. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klurejr View Post
    hahaha. Negatory.

    Climbing fast takes Fitness NOT Skill.

    Descending fast takes Skill.
    Technical climbing takes both. Come to Florida canyon and I'll introduce you to "Humiliation Hill", and there will be no doubt about this. None, whatsoever. If you know where to look there's actually some pretty challenging gravity stuff in the Florida canyon and Balboa Park areas. Some of the stuff there I won't even try.
    Re-Cycled Person who rides a mountain bicycle.

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Ray View Post
    Technical climbing takes both.
    I have found very few area's that have technical climbs. Most rides can be done without ever seeing a technical climb.

    But I do agree that they require both.
    Ride Bikes, Drink Craft Beer, Repeat.

  7. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Klurejr View Post
    hahaha. Negatory.

    Climbing fast takes Fitness NOT Skill.

    Descending fast takes Skill.
    Au contraire, mon frere...climbing fast takes strategy (this includes fitness), which falls under the skillz umbrella....wait until you get older...you (may) learn this, if you are lucky, Grasshopper!!!

    *I don't make the rulzzzzz, I just enforce them!!!

  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by RTSO2112 View Post
    Au contraire, mon frere...climbing fast takes strategy (this includes fitness), which falls under the skillz umbrella....wait until you get older...you (may) learn this, if you are lucky, Grasshopper!!!

    *I don't make the rulzzzzz, I just enforce them!!!
    You know, of course, that our friend Aquaholic rides UP Noble canyon, right? I'd say that's technical AND physically demanding.

    And after it's all said and done, it's the fitness that keeps you alive to ride another day.......not that I think you need to be reminded of this.
    Re-Cycled Person who rides a mountain bicycle.

  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Ray View Post
    You know, of course, that our friend Aquaholic rides UP Noble canyon, right? I'd say that's technical AND physically demanding.

    And after it's all said and done, it's the fitness that keeps you alive to ride another day.......not that I think you need to be reminded of this.
    I heard Aqua retired...because he couldn't ride down STH anymore w/o dabbing!

    That's when you know it's YOUR time.

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by RTSO2112 View Post
    I heard Aqua retired...because he couldn't ride down STH anymore w/o dabbing!

    That's when you know it's YOUR time.
    In that case, then, it's been my time for a couple of decades now.
    Re-Cycled Person who rides a mountain bicycle.

  11. #36
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    Ventana may be worth a look for you. The El Cap is impressively stiff and plush for tech stuff but very peddleable...more of a trail bike that can go bigger if need be...

  12. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by RTSO2112 View Post
    Au contraire, mon frere...climbing fast takes strategy (this includes fitness), which falls under the skillz umbrella....wait until you get older...you (may) learn this, if you are lucky, Grasshopper!!!

    *I don't make the rulzzzzz, I just enforce them!!!
    Let me clarify then.

    Riding uphill in Calavera, where I do most of my riding with friends takes ZERO skill for the trails that we choose to ride up. It takes ONLY fitness.
    Ride Bikes, Drink Craft Beer, Repeat.

  13. #38
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    This is what I chose...

    Best Do It All Bike For SoCal - How much travel is enough - all mountain & trail-megatrail_1.jpg


    Guerrilla Gravity MEGATRAIL

    I've only had it out for two rides so far: A 2.5-hour trail ride in El Moro and a short session hitting jumps somewhere else. Taking it to Snow Summit on Friday and will put a few more longer rides on it before posting a review in the All Mountain thread. So far though....excellent!

    I had boiled it down to either the carbon Bronson or Solo (with 140mm Pike) or the Kona 134 (with 150mm Pike and CC DBinline Air). Started off with my heart set on carbon but read a few stellar reviews on this bike that piqued my interest. One of the forum members in Santa Barbara has one and offered to let me test ride it (thanks!!)... although his was a size smaller than I needed, it was enough to know.

    As shown the bike weighs in at 31.1 lbs. Heavier than the carbon fiber alternatives but still three pounds lighter than the less capable 2006 Giant Reign 1 that it replaced.

    On steep, loose climbs the bike's phenomenal traction advantage is all I notice. Downhill: very composed and controllable. It's a big evolution over the bike it replaced.

    I'm 240 lbs with gear and I like a stiff bike that can handle abuse. The Megatrail meets that requirement...but it's just as fun and flickable as the lighter bikes I demoed. It also has a unique feature in that a 30-second adjustment changes the suspension from Trail Mode to Gravity Mode (150mm to 160mm, drops the BB height by 0.50", slackens the head angle out from 66.5 to 65.5). I've only ridden it in Trail Mode, but will switch to Gravity today to get ready for Snow Summit.
    Last edited by colbatguano; 09-10-2014 at 01:43 PM.

  14. #39
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    way to go on the MEGATRAIL! hearing great things about this bike and its made in the mfn' USA! while i love my nomad and would have hard time giving it up... its rad to see a company like GG rising up, building local and producing a bad ass product. And just as cool hearing about consumers breaking away from the bigger trusted brand and giving something else a shot. looking forward to getting the post summit bike review.

  15. #40
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    My RIP 9 was pretty good for 'round here, but commuting along the 118 makes Rocky Peak a 3-4x a week destination when I'm riding a lot. That area is...well...rocky, and the 5" RIP wasn't quite enough. The Lunchbox's 6" is plenty, and while it's not a fast climber, it has loads of grip and is so much fun pointed down. One can swap out the 6" rockers for 5" rockers using the same shock and get a sweet trail bike out of it too.
    '14 Lenz Lunchbox

  16. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by tarp43 View Post
    way to go on the MEGATRAIL! hearing great things about this bike and its made in the mfn' USA! while i love my nomad and would have hard time giving it up... its rad to see a company like GG rising up, building local and producing a bad ass product. And just as cool hearing about consumers breaking away from the bigger trusted brand and giving something else a shot. looking forward to getting the post summit bike review.
    Snow Summit was a blast and the Megatrail railed those berms on Westridge in Gravity Mode. The only weak point was the 2.25 Nobby Nic on the rear...squirmy and breaks loose too easy and just not enough tire for that application. I knew that going in though but wanted to see how it did. I'll be switching it out to a HR II 2.4 for another run later this month.

    There's definitely something unique going on with the Megatrail. Like I said before...the frame is really stiff, which is awesome. But what really stands out to me is that the suspension performance and traction is phenomenal both uphill and down.

  17. #42
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    I gotta say, that Megatrail looks like one cool bike. I love my old Joker in it' new 1X10 setup. but it's not what I'd call a do-it-all bike.
    It does a lot of stuff, and some of the stuff it can do is beyond me, but it leaves a bit to be desired on those really long climbs on the mountain fire roads and such.

    As I mentioned above about Balboa Park, there were some trails that the Joker loved, but that I couldn't ride without killing myself on the jumps. The rangers took care of all that about 3 weeks ago....the took a bobcat to all those trails, dismantled the jumps, too.

    I guess the idea of park users having fun in ways that did not involve hypodermic needles or unsafe sex acts was just too over the top for them. It's back to business as usual in there now. Another San Diego triumph.
    Re-Cycled Person who rides a mountain bicycle.

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Ray View Post
    I gotta say, that Megatrail looks like one cool bike. I love my old Joker in it' new 1X10 setup. but it's not what I'd call a do-it-all bike.
    It does a lot of stuff, and some of the stuff it can do is beyond me, but it leaves a bit to be desired on those really long climbs on the mountain fire roads and such.

    As I mentioned above about Balboa Park, there were some trails that the Joker loved, but that I couldn't ride without killing myself on the jumps. The rangers took care of all that about 3 weeks ago....the took a bobcat to all those trails, dismantled the jumps, too.

    I guess the idea of park users having fun in ways that did not involve hypodermic needles or unsafe sex acts was just too over the top for them. It's back to business as usual in there now. Another San Diego triumph.
    That is a bummer. I lived in North County for years and it seemed as if mountain biking was low on the government priority list. It seems more viable in OC anyway. The trend in general seems to be that us citizens are too dumb to assume our own risk and therefore need the state to guide our simple minds.

    I'm lucky because there's a nice dirt jump and pump track nearby. I hit it when the real riders are in school.

  19. #44
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    Best Do It All Bike For SoCal - How much travel is enough - all mountain & trail

    Pivot Mach 429 Carbon - 29'er with 120mm front, 100mm rear with DW link. Climbs like a goat, stiff and burly enough for the downs. Short chain stay makes bike more nimble than most 29'ers.

    Ride all around San Diego. Bike weight 26 lbs with KS LEV dropper post.

  20. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by SDMTB'er View Post
    Pivot Mach 429 Carbon - 29'er with 120mm front, 100mm rear with DW link. Climbs like a goat, stiff and burly enough for the downs. Short chain stay makes bike more nimble than most 29'ers.

    Ride all around San Diego. Bike weight 26 lbs with KS LEV dropper post.
    A "burly XC" bike like this or a JET 9 is good for 90% of SoCal, but if you really want to hit everything and still be able to pedal up, I'd go 140-150 rear. There are a number of trails within 5-20 minutes of my house (north SFV) where 6" opens up a world of fun (TWSS).

    That Megatrail looks suh-weet. Very much in the spirit of my Lenz.
    '14 Lenz Lunchbox

  21. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by kragu View Post
    A "burly XC" bike like this or a JET 9 is good for 90% of SoCal, but if you really want to hit everything and still be able to pedal up, I'd go 140-150 rear. There are a number of trails within 5-20 minutes of my house (north SFV) where 6" opens up a world of fun (TWSS).

    That Megatrail looks suh-weet. Very much in the spirit of my Lenz.
    Thanks! A lightweight 100/120mm would round things out nicely--sometimes it's nice to rip going uphill too.

  22. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by kragu View Post
    A "burly XC" bike like this or a JET 9 is good for 90% of SoCal, but if you really want to hit everything and still be able to pedal up, I'd go 140-150 rear. There are a number of trails within 5-20 minutes of my house (north SFV) where 6" opens up a world of fun (TWSS).

    That Megatrail looks suh-weet. Very much in the spirit of my Lenz.
    I agree. I've been really happy with my Tallboy LTc. I upgrade from a Tallboy with a 120mm fork. It was a great bike, but going with a bit more travel in the rear opened up a lot of lines (and fun) for me.

  23. #48
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    Marin Mt Vsion is a great bike.

    Quote Originally Posted by sandmangts View Post
    North of the Border just got a fresh demo fleet from Norco and they have Turner, Ellsworth etc. I suggest going there and doing a demo. The Norco Sight is an amazing bike.
    I will throw in Marin's name for this topic. MT Vision series is a very smooth bike. I bought the XM-8 from NOB and I am now putting the hurt to my Wednesday night crew. More miles and more fun since I moved from CDale to Marin. ...Hitt

  24. #49
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    If it came down to one bike...I'd look for a 650b with 150-160mm of travel.

    Like a Santa Cruz Bronson, Transition Covert, or Mach 6. Bikes with a ~67 deg HTA.
    Cervelo S2
    Specialized Carve Pro
    Pivot Mach 5

  25. #50
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    trance advanced sx or trance 1 with pike.

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