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  1. #1
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    Tire choices for Ontario trails

    I am in the market for some new rubber and was wondering what people out here are riding. I see a lot of Rocket Rons and Racing Ralph's on the Palgrave Wilderness Trail and Albion Hills trails. I wasn't sure if those were the tires that came stock on the bikes they ride (I checked online and found that a lot of times they are) so I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions on a tire for this area.

    I was looking at Maxxis Ignitors front and back. I currently have WTB velociraptors front and back and they are way overkill (bought them before I knew more about bikes). They grip like crazy but the rolling resistance is high and are more of a mud and loose dirt tire.

    My wife has SB8s on her bike and I've played around on it a bit and found them to not be grippy enough for my liking.


    Lets hear what you are running.


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  2. #2
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    I'd look into the Kenda Slant Six tires - they are in between the SB8's and Nevegals and I found them to work very well on hardpack and medium-loose conditions, only opting for meatier tires in late fall. They have a nice round profile and are very predictable when they finally do lose traction. I used them on my SS 29er hardtail. Happy hunting!
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  3. #3
    Lemmy Rules!
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    For a good all round tire I have found for the bike I ride (29er hard tail) and the kind of riding I do (XC racing) Racing Ralph's and Continental x-kings are both a good all round tire. The RR is a little faster on dry trails but the x-king sheds mud a little better when it gets wet.

    But it's hard to answer your question more fully without knowing where you ride, what conditions you ride in, what sort of riding you do, and whether you run tubeless or not
    Strava made me do it....

  4. #4
    Lemmy Rules!
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    I have found for the bike I ride (29er hard tail) and the kind of riding I do (XC racing) Racing Ralph's and Continental x-kings are both a good all round tire. The RR is a little faster on dry trails but the x-king sheds mud a little better when it gets wet.

    But it's hard to fully answer your question more fully without knowing where you ride, what conditions you ride in, what sort of riding you do, and whether you run tubeless or not
    Strava made me do it....

  5. #5
    Team NFI
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    Velociraptors are pretty skinny tires compared to what most are running on the trails now days.
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  6. #6
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    Tire choices for Ontario trails

    I'm riding mostly those two trails. I have a hard tail 26er. I was looking at going 2.1 or 2.2 in size. My WTBs are 2.1 as well. I mostly ride when it's dry but have hit some muddy patches. I plan on still running tubes as I plan on changing rims soon and don't want to have to through all the hassle.

    I looked at the x kinds as well an was interests in those too.


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  7. #7
    Lemmy Rules!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kbarrette View Post
    I'm riding mostly those two trails. I have a hard tail 26er. I was looking at going 2.1 or 2.2 in size. My WTBs are 2.1 as well. I mostly ride when it's dry but have hit some muddy patches. I plan on still running tubes as I plan on changing rims soon and don't want to have to through all the hassle.

    I looked at the x kinds as well an was interests in those too.


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    Ok, then check out the Rocket Ron's or the Xkings
    Strava made me do it....

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kbarrette View Post
    My wife has SB8s on her bike and I've played around on it a bit and found them to not be grippy enough for my liking.
    Question: would that be lack of cornering grip, lack of climbing/braking grip, or both?

  9. #9
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    Tire choices for Ontario trails

    Cornering. I found the climbing was fine but they wash quite easily in a turn


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  10. #10
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    I use Specialized Ground Controls on both my 26" full suspension rig and on my 29" rigid single speed. They work great on the trails here in Michigan. I started using them because I was having issues washing out while cornering. They solved those issues.

  11. #11
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    Does anyone run different sizes front and rear? Used to be common to run narrower on the back I think.
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  12. #12
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    At this point it seems like Ice Spiker Pros will be the best for the foreseeable future
    I use specialized fast tracks for racing and tried Maxxis ardents for the first time for trail riding this year. I like them.
    I do sometimes run a narrower tire on the rear still too.

  13. #13
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    Just to add another to the list. I got a deal on some WTB Nano tires this summer and was very surprised how well they worked as a do-all xc tire. I'm going to have to agree with the others that you just can't go wrong with the X-kings or Racing Ralph rapid rob etc. They can all be had at a decent price too.
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  14. #14
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    For 26" I always love the Panaracer (available from MEC). Not available in 29", if it was, I'd be a buyer.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by bishskate View Post
    Does anyone run different sizes front and rear? Used to be common to run narrower on the back I think.
    On the 29er HT I am running RR 2.3 on the front and 1.9 Kenda Karma on the back. Mostly because the 2.3 wouldn't fit between the seat stays on the back so I put a previously run 1.9 on. These seem to run fine here and down in Ellicottville trails, with some trouble over the wet off camber roots, but it would be hard to find a tire that works well on everything.
    I use small block 8s 2.1 on the 26-FS and they seem fine but they usually run on the tight twisty single track with no hard packed trails or such to slid out on corners.
    The P2A bike is a CF ridgid 29er and I have either Stan's CX 700 x 35 or a pair of Kenda Kozmik Lites that are 29 x 2.0.
    Everything is Stans's tubeless and mostly all Stan's rims.

  16. #16
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    I've ridden a bunch of different tires around southern ontario. For our general terrain and conditions (assuming you are looking for a fast rolling tire), I was converted to Schwalbe this year. I have Racing Ralphs on the race wheels and Rocket Rons on my everyday wheels. Very impressed how they have handled a wide variety of conditions, from fast hard packed, to wet roots and rocks.

    I tore the sidewall on one of my Rocket Rons this year, tried a WTB nanoraptor and hated it. Got a Continental X-king and thought it was better, but not as good as the Rocket Ron.

    I spent many years on Specialized Fast traks and just got used to them, though it was sketchy at times. I used a set of Hutichson Pythons for a season and thought they worked really well.

    As a note, this is all based on wanting a fast rolling, race type tire. I've used Maxxis Advantages and thought they were an amazing tire, but a bit too slow (have tired Maxxis crossmarks and hated them )

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kbarrette View Post
    Cornering. I found the climbing was fine but they wash quite easily in a turn
    Try the Hutchinson Cobra, it rolls almost like a semi-slick but still corners better than most XC tires.
    Just try not to run into too much mud, it clogs fairly easily and once that happens you're in trouble.

    As for what I run on my own bikes, I use the Conti Race King for trails such as Albion or Kelso where the trails are mostly hardpack or rock. They also get used when I'm just out for a lazy cruise on the local trails.

    For general riding I'm on the Conti Mountain King II or Trail King depending on how fast I want to go on the downhills. Both tires have a lot more grip than XC tires such as the Racing Ralph or X-King, but they are slower, especially the Trail King. I tend to ride like a moron at times so I need sticky tires to save my butt when I'm having too much fun.

  18. #18
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    tires are like saddles... everyone has their fav. here's my advice... go tubeless as soon as you can. run a wider rim, allows you to run a smaller tire with the same effect. for xc you don't need hi profile knobs in the center, semi slick is fine, a little bit of side knob for traction. most trails in albion/palgrave are not tech and have good traction. just pay attention to your tire pressure and figure out what works best for you. now else where, i like to run 2.35's (dh, xc, etc) tubeless. none of this dual size stuff. widely spaced thick center knobs, decent side knobs, soft compound. though i wear out a set each year. my tire pressure is around 35lbs and on a wet day a blue or ms i dump it down to 25ish lbs, i don't switch my tires for the conditions, nor do i care to much about the brand (just features).
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