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  1. #1
    p0g0
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    Bike for San Diego area

    Hello all,
    I've spent all of my time mountain biking on the east coast on smooth, fast rolling XC trails, primarily on my SS Specialized Carve with an 80mm fork. I'm going to be moving out to Escondido in a few months, and from what I've read, the trails out there are a bit rougher than the tamed singletrack that I'm used to. In anticipation of more elevation, I set up my Carve as a 1x10, but am I going to be limited as to what I can ride with a hardtail? Would a dropper post be advisable?

  2. #2
    Master of the Face Plant
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    No and no. There is not a single trail in this area that you can't handle on a hardtail. Daley Ranch and Lake Hodges will be your local rides. Daley has more climbing and more chunk but nothing you need a full susser for. I ride a hardtail single speed at Hodges, I bring my 08 Epiphany to Daley just because it has more climbing. You may want a full suspension rig eventually just for comfort and if you plan to ride trails like Noble Canyon, and La Costa you will want some suspension. Dropper posts are overkill in my opinion.
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  3. #3
    Certifiably Crazy
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    Agreed on the dropper post. I don't use mine as much as I thought I would. I've ridden most San Diego trails, even Noble on a hardtail. I'm now rocking a full suspension 29er for comfort.
    2013 Felt Edict Nine

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by sandmangts View Post
    No and no. There is not a single trail in this area that you can't handle on a hardtail. Daley Ranch and Lake Hodges will be your local rides. Daley has more climbing and more chunk but nothing you need a full susser for. I ride a hardtail single speed at Hodges, I bring my 08 Epiphany to Daley just because it has more climbing. You may want a full suspension rig eventually just for comfort and if you plan to ride trails like Noble Canyon, and La Costa you will want some suspension. Dropper posts are overkill in my opinion.
    I tend to favor full suspension, but then again I'm 60, and I have several POUNDS of retained hardware. I even converted an old Jamis Dakar XLT into a FS single speed.

    But I have to agree with you here, there is nothing in SD county short of a few shuttle-only type spots that you can't ride on a hard tail, or even a full-rigid, if you have the skills.

    Back in the late 80's we could climb Noble from Pine Valley to Sunrise Hwy. on our full-rigid bikes of the day. But back then, Noble did not look like it does now.
    Re-Cycled Person who rides a mountain bicycle.

  5. #5
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    I really only ride at lake hodges on a specialized hardrock 26er hardtail. there are is really only one short stretch where the path (which is 6 ft wide in this area) is cobbled with small rocks between 3 and 6 inches. totally doable on my hardtail, but kinda bumpy. everything else is pretty much smooth single track or wider.

  6. #6
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    actually, that's not true. there are a few other rocky areas which are very short say 20 feet long and at times on a hill. but still totally doable on a hardtail. and there is also some spots that are partially obstructed by some larger rock formation. I generally slow down and try to wiggle my wheels through it but often just get off and walk through the obstacles. I am unsure if a full suspension would benefit me in this, probably not at my skill level.

  7. #7
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    I don't know where you guys ride, but there is PLENTY of use for 5-6" travel bikes and dropper posts around Escondido. Everything can be ridden on a HT, but you will be much more comfortable and most likely quicker on an FS bike. At Hodges Bernardo Peak would be the first example. From there you can link into Elfin Forest which is a TON of chunk. In addition you have Black Mountain 15 minutes away.

    That being said, riding around here is exactly as hard or as easy as you want to make it. You will be fine on your current bike if that is what you want to ride. If you want to push your limits a FS bike is highly recommended, but spend some time getting to know the trails before you make a decision. Let us know if you have more questions and enjoy the move!

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