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  1. #1
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    Smuggler or Scout for east coast riding?

    Leaving the west coast for the east coast for grad school. Area is TBD, but will likely be eastern Pennsylvania (Philly) or possibly North Carolina (Duquesne area).

    I currently ride a Kona Process 153 as my main bike, and it's great for the long descents of California. However, since those won't be happening as often, I'd like to downsize regarding travel as my one main bike to something more efficient.

    About me:

    -6'3"
    -180 lbs
    -Aggressive riding style that like to jump pop and launch off anything on the trail I can. Not doing any massive bike park jumps.

    I've found both bikes in the 2016 3 build size XL, brand new for $3000. Since the spec is basically identical it's really about the frame. I don't care much about the wheel size debate. I love the Process 650b ride, and I also loved the 29er Kona honzo ride previously. Geometry is more important, I'm just looking for more fun.

  2. #2
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    The east coast is, generally speaking, much rockier than CA, so if you need 6" in CA, you're going to want it on the east coast, too.

    Also, Philly is in eastern PA...

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  3. #3
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    My experience from my riding there in the past was that there were very few rocks compared to what I'm used to in SoCal. There was a ton more roots and shorter, tight descents.

    Regardless though, I'm going to downsize to a more "trail" type bike from enduro since the days of several thousand foot descents will be gone.

  4. #4
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    There is a Transition demo/dealer in Philly for a small fee you can ride one on the trails.


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  5. #5
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    Never ridden either of those areas, but if I was going to buy a FS Transition for the east (Upstate NY) - I'd buy a Smuggler.

    My reasoning for that would be there is only a 13mm difference in wheelbase for the XL in each bike, you get a fair bit more traction, and the travel is more suited for rolling terrain.
    Last edited by l'oiseau; 08-15-2016 at 12:45 PM.
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  6. #6
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    The Smuggler is perfect for most NC trails like those in Dupont & Pisgah.

  7. #7
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    Both those bikes are popular in Philly. Think I see more Scouts than Smugglers. Just depends if you want a little more speed or a little more play.

    I agree with the others that dumping your 153 sounds stupid; the Wiss is filled with happy Patrol/Nomad/Bronson/Remedy/whatever riders. And if you think we have very few rocks, uh, you're in for an education all right.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fluidworks View Post
    My experience from my riding there in the past was that there were very few rocks compared to what I'm used to in SoCal. There was a ton more roots and shorter, tight descents.

    Regardless though, I'm going to downsize to a more "trail" type bike from enduro since the days of several thousand foot descents will be gone.
    I ve ridden both CO and Western PA trails. With out a doubt I think you'll be surprised about how varied the terrain in PA can be. I used to ride a SC Heckler in PA then switched to a TransAm 29'r as my daily ride. I can't say one was better than the other, it just depended on which trails we rode and there were times I was glad to have 6" of travel. I just sold the Heckler and am planning on picking up a Scout for riding in the CO Front Range, after a few demo's I think it should be just as much fun back east as it is here. I was on the fence between the smuggler and the scout , but, I think the 27.5 will work great for my riding and I still have the TransAm for those days I want a 29'r.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by tarzan13 View Post
    I ve ridden both CO and Western PA trails. With out a doubt I think you'll be surprised about how varied the terrain in PA can be. I used to ride a SC Heckler in PA then switched to a TransAm 29'r as my daily ride. I can't say one was better than the other, it just depended on which trails we rode and there were times I was glad to have 6" of travel. I just sold the Heckler and am planning on picking up a Scout for riding in the CO Front Range, after a few demo's I think it should be just as much fun back east as it is here. I was on the fence between the smuggler and the scout , but, I think the 27.5 will work great for my riding and I still have the TransAm for those days I want a 29'r.
    But in terms of spec, what's right in between a TA and a Scout?

    For a single bike, Smuggler seems like a better option to me. If he were to keep his Process, an AM hardtail would be a nice compliment. Sounds like he already had a Honzo, don't know he ditched that?
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by l'oiseau View Post
    But in terms of spec, what's right in between a TA and a Scout?

    For a single bike, Smuggler seems like a better option to me. If he were to keep his Process, an AM hardtail would be a nice compliment. Sounds like he already had a Honzo, don't know he ditched that?
    I don't know about the specs between the Scout and the TA. But, I do think the Smuggler would make a sweet East Coast ride. I also agree about an AM HT being a nice compliment. But, he did mention he is looking for more fun. I think if fun is what you are after the Scout is going to give it to you. The only reason I don't have one is I can't decided between a hot deal on a 2016 demo or ordering a new 2017?

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marion Delgado View Post
    Both those bikes are popular in Philly. Think I see more Scouts than Smugglers. Just depends if you want a little more speed or a little more play.

    I agree with the others that dumping your 153 sounds stupid; the Wiss is filled with happy Patrol/Nomad/Bronson/Remedy/whatever riders. And if you think we have very few rocks, uh, you're in for an education all right.
    I demoed a Scout at Wiss, had a blast, and bought it. That trail system is really similar to the Maryland trails I ride.


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  12. #12
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    I live in upstate NY and owned a Scout and it really was a fun bike. I thought about a Smuggler for the trails around here which are root and rock nightmares! Our trails seem to have a lot of soil erosion and the roots can be 4-5 inches tall in the middle of the trail. I often wondered how a 29er would help with our trail features, but every time I ride a 29er I fixate on how big the wheel looks and want my 27.5 back. The Scout is a great east coast trail bike!

  13. #13
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    I just went from a nomad to and evil the following. Love the 29er.....

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