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  1. #1
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    Best tires For SoCa Singletrack

    I just moved to SoCa and my Hardttail and my new FS bike are set up with pretty aggressive tread (HT - IRC Mythos, Hollowpoint - Larssen Maxxis). Anyway, I love the trails here! But, I am use to riding more rooted, wet muddy stuff back Illinois. And, my Mythos hooked up great! But, now, most of the singletrack I encounter is hardpack (but a ton more climbing in CA) Anyway, what do you guys use for your tire of choice? For my hardtail, I am going to covnert to Stan No-Tubes and my Hollowpoint has UST rims. I am into going fast (but not racer fast) but still want control on turns and downhill. Should I go with a semi-slick her in SoCa?

    Thanks for all of your responses!

  2. #2
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    Im running a 2.4 (F) and 2.24 (R) WTB mutano raptor on my NRS. I think it works well with Socal condtions. It rolls very fast and corners relatively well. Going on downhills, I find that it does pretty good. It rolls over the rocks with ease but sometimes I find it slipping on wet conditions (like yesterday in Santiago). One thing I dont like about these tires is that it will pack up a lot of mud. Its not a mud tire, I can say that, and it will slow you down a lot once the mud starts packing. Another weird things I found out about these tires is that it will pick up small racks between the knobs and fling them in front of you. I dont know if this is the tire's design or the reverse arch on my Skareb that cause it. Just my $.02
    Keep Pedaling

  3. #3
    "Ride Lots" - Eddie Mercx
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    Best tire I've found

    is a Geax Sedona. I was running the 1.95s for about a year and a half then I switched to the 2.25s about 6 months ago. With either width, they're simply the best tire I've ever used on our trails.

    the problem with our trails is that they're very inconsistent. On one ride, you'll have sharp rocks, baby heads, hardpack, hardpack covered with sand, sand, clay, etc. Nothing is ever consistent.

    So, choosing a tire isn't as easy as choosing a tire that is best for a certain type of terrain. It's more like choosing a tire that is wrong least often.

    The Sedona's corner wonderfully and hook up on everything. It's a resaonably fast rolling tire but has good traction even when worn. My one complaint is that on the rear it seems to wear down a bit quickly but it still hooks up even when it starts looking like a semi-slick.

    I liked the Fire XC's for a while too but I found that I was tearing lugs off on all of our rocks. When the lugs were on, they seemed to hook up well (after a few rides, I didn't like them brand new) but I went through several because lugs got removed even though tread was still good.

    On another note, did you move to Newbury Park to work for a rather large pharmaceutical company on relocation from Chicago and did you perhaps purchase a condo on Artisan across from said pharmaceutical company?

    I remember a few months back a thread about somebody possibly relocating from Chicago and it turns out that whoever purchased my in-laws condo on Artisan moved from Chicago. Just seemed like a big coincidence............

    YR

  4. #4
    Dream it, Do it.
    Reputation: Spectre's Avatar
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    Unless you're racing, I wouldn't go with a Semi-slick

    I agree with Yeti_Rider. SoCal trails have very inconsistent conditions. Unless you're racing and know the conditions of the course on which you're riding, I would pick an all conditions tire. I been using the Fire XC for quite a while, but I'm interested in trying the Nokian NBX and the Kenda Blue Groove.

  5. #5
    cask conditioned
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    Everything is grippy right now.

    "But, now, most of the singletrack I encounter is hardpack"

    That should last for another month or so. Enjoy it while you can. I'm cleaning everything I've been having problems with in the past.

    I've been turning many people, both hardtailers, ss'ers and fs'ers, onto IRC 2.25 Trailbears. They're cheap at $19, wear incredibly well, have big and aggresive but non-squirmy knobs, hook up in all conditions and they're cheap! They weigh in around 720 and roll slower than a Mutano 2.4, but wear better and feel a ton better. The performance makes up for any percieved weight gain.

  6. #6
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    I'm riding intense CC2.25's right now and I like them. In the past I've also liked WTB velociraptors, Tioga DH and "extreme XC" tires. Tried IRC mythos xc but they never really hooked up in the corners. I've also tried some of Michellin's lightweight xc tires and they got torn up within a few rides. I see a lot of people riding Panaracer fire tires. Next I might try Intense system 4's or mutanoraptors, a lot of people down here are raving about them..

  7. #7
    Old Enough to Know Better
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    A vote for Fire XCs

    ... or some other multi-condition tire. I've been using the Fires for several years, and haven't found anything better for general use in SoCal. At certain times of year, in certain places, a specific condition tire will do better. But overall, it's hard to beat Fire XCs.

    My in-laws live in Waukegan, IL, and the riding in Lake Co/northern Cook Co is completely differnt from SoCal - and yes, we have LOTS more climbing! There's a reason their called "mountain bikes," and I don't think you can truly experience that reason in (northern) Illinois!

  8. #8
    Merrrrjig
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    I run a 26" mobster 2.5 up front and a 24" highroller 2.7 out back. Its a hell of a job going uphill!

  9. #9
    You Are What You Is
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    Maxxis & Panaracer

    Maxxis Minion 2.35 and Panaracer Fire XC. For all-around performance and light weight the Panaracers are a great choice. I've gone to the new Panaracer 2.4 in the front and I love it. Nokian make nice rubber as well.

  10. #10
    Chillin the Most
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    Kenda Tomac series...

    the Blue Groove front/ Nevegal rear they come in a 2.0 - 2.5 folding (light) and Stick-E rubber compound, so they will grip and rail any terrain Cali has to offer. I live and ride in So.Cal. I have used the 2.1 & 2.35 Blue Groove and Nevegal's and they rule. Right now I have the 2.4 Cotez front and a 2.0 Karma DTC rear, very low rolling but awesome grip.

    check'em out http://www.kendausa.com

  11. #11
    R.I.P. DogFriend
    Reputation: jeffj's Avatar
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    The Velociraptor is KING in this area for rear tire traction, but has rolling resistance that is noticeable. I have used Tioga DH in 2.1 and 2.3 in the rear and been very happy with the performance. Panaracer Fire XC is also popular around here too for both front and rear. I currently use the Velociraptor in the front with the Tioga 2.1 DH in the rear. Mythos XC are indeed sketchy around here and the fronts will wash out in hard corners.

    I know people that have been using various Kendaís with the Stick-E rubber and saying good things about them as well, but I donít know exactly which ones.

    One other tire I feel like I have to mention that I NEVER thought I would like is the Hutchinson Scorpion. The tube version of these came on two hardtails that I bought for my kids in the past year and they both didnít care for them (and I replaced them with Fire XCís which they like), but I tested that VT1 (that has the tubeless version of the Scorpions) for a week last fall and even though I was prepared to hate them, they really surprised me with how well they hooked up. That bike with those tire absolutely hauled *** down the hills and climbed just fine. You know your tires work well when you never have to think about them while riding. Wear is another factor, but the tubeless Scorpions hooked up for me on that bike like crazy. But when it starts getting dusty, they may not work as well for climbing in the loose stuff. For that, a Velociraptor with the chevrons turned like "^" is hard to beat.
    Last edited by jeffj; 02-24-2004 at 10:55 AM.

  12. #12
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    Velociraptor only a baronet...

    They are great as a rear tire when it gets all thick and dusty in late summer, but that's really the only tie they shine, IMO. On hard pack with new Velociraptors, I could sometimes feel the rear lugs vibrating the frame, or the front lugs folding on corners. I used to ride them alot, but I find the Fire XC to be a much better all-round tire here in SoCal.

  13. #13
    Ya, right.
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    Fire Xc's

    I have been riding the Panaracer Fire XC Pro both front and rear for a couple months now, and really like them. I read another post somewhere stating they had a high rolling resistance. I have not found this to be true at all. I am very happy with them, and at $22 each, the price was right.

    Whichever tire you go with, at least you are out here in good ol SoCal--home of the (almost) endless summer. I'm originally from Northern Indiana, and I don't miss it one bit

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by DSDuke
    I have been riding the Panaracer Fire XC Pro both front and rear for a couple months now, and really like them. I read another post somewhere stating they had a high rolling resistance. I have not found this to be true at all. I am very happy with them, and at $22 each, the price was right.

    Whichever tire you go with, at least you are out here in good ol SoCal--home of the (almost) endless summer. I'm originally from Northern Indiana, and I don't miss it one bit
    With the group I ride with, Fire XC 2.1's seem to be the default standard (especially when they go on sale somewhere).

    I used one as my rear tire for a few years and highly recommend it for general XC. Now I'm running the Weirwolf 2.5 on the front and the Fire FR 2.4 on the back. My bike came with a pair of Maxxis Minon DH 2.5's and they worked great, but I'd rather save them for Snow Summit this summer.

  15. #15
    Village Dirtbag
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    My Blur came with Kenda Karmas. Very fast and light. Almost like a semi-slick. They were nice on the hardpack, but were worthless in the sand. Since I live near the ocean, sand was a real issue. I switched to Conti Vertical Pro-tection tires. Much better in the sand. I have no complaints other than the price.

  16. #16
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    What do you all think of Weirwolf 2.5s? I put a pair on (rear facing backwards) and am really quite smitten with them. Have I reached nirvana or is this just a false peak in the path?

  17. #17
    "Ride Lots" - Eddie Mercx
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    A buddy of mine

    Quote Originally Posted by AMike
    What do you all think of Weirwolf 2.5s? I put a pair on (rear facing backwards) and am really quite smitten with them. Have I reached nirvana or is this just a false peak in the path?
    swears by them on his SS. He may even run one backwards but I can't recall. I just know he loves them.

    YR

  18. #18
    Owner-Mass Produced Bike
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    lol

    Quote Originally Posted by Moo Shoo Pork
    Anyway, I love the trails here! But, I am use to riding more rooted, wet muddy stuff back Illinois.

    Thanks for all of your responses!
    Hey, you make illinois sound like a real exciting place to ride in. I used to live there.
    " www.mtbr.com the commercialization of a passion. sickening. "

  19. #19
    Over the Hill
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    loose

    It is not the rocks or the hard pack that will get you, it is the loose stuff and the loose stuff sitting on top of rocks. Used Panaracer Fire XC Pro 2.1 for a long time and thought them to be a very good tire, assuming you get the ones made in Japan and not Taiwan. I like running low air in my tires (25-28lbs) and pinch flats were happening more than I liked with the XC Pros and was tearing off knoppies.

    I do not care that much about the weight penalty and have found some fairly light high volume tires, with deep knoppies. Running a WTB Werewolf 2.5 Race on the front and IRC 2.25 Trailbear on the back. So far the best I have found.

    Turner 5-spot
    rider weight 220lbs

  20. #20
    mtbr member
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    Socal tires

    These are the current trail tires I'm using depending on the trail type, soil, rocks, conditions, distance, grade and other factors. There is no perfect allmountain tire.
    I like tires that hook-up versus super light and roll fast. I really like these Kenda Nevgal 2.5 single caps for a light DH/FR tire and soft sandy conditions.
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  21. #21
    aka Willy Vanilly
    Reputation: will8250's Avatar
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    Would you mind explaining which tires you use for which conditions?
    Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius -- and a lot of courage -- to move in the opposite direction.
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by will8250
    Would you mind explaining which tires you use for which conditions?
    Studed Nokian tire work great for hot summer asphalt and bloody 4X race battles.

    Hutchison Pythons work good on Ice, deep sand, and steep chutes.

    The rest is highly classified.

  23. #23
    Unshaven Yak
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    Another vote for IRC Trailbears

    I currently alternate between 2.25 IRC Trailbears, 2.3 Conti Verticals & Hutchinson Pytons (for the easy & flat stuff).

    The Trailbears hold up to the highspeed runs through rockgardens & dusty conditions on some trails, while the Conti's are going on tomorrow for a total singletrack, creek run. The conditions are perfect for those sharp little knobs right now (moist-tacky).

  24. #24
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    i've been using a kenda cortez on the back wheel, and it's great. it's like a karma but with a much larger casing (2.4), some taller knobs, and some support between the knobs. even on some sandier/slightly muddy rides (mendenhall ridge after the rain), it didn't pack up with mud and held it's cornering ability. on the front i use a mutanoraptor 2.24, and it's been there forever. when it wears down i'll either replace it or try a kenda blue groove or a tioga yellow kirin (or all 3).

  25. #25
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    Thanks For The Replies!

    Quote Originally Posted by will8250
    Would you mind explaining which tires you use for which conditions?

    Since I posted this, I have been riding alot more different trails in the Thousand Oaks area. And, I have been encountering alot more challenging and changing terrain. Also, I got my 2003 Hollowpoint Expert rolling and the tires on them (Maxxis Larsen TT's UST) have be awesome! The things weigh more than the IRC mythos that are on my hardtail, but they seem to roll better over everything (hardpack and loose stuff). I also have been talking to some guys on the trail and alot of people are using Hutchinson Pythons. I'm going to keep the Larsen's on the Hollowpoint but I just ordered some Pythons for the HT and see how well they do. Thanks Again for all of your posts!

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