Singlespeed in MN?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Singlespeed in MN?

    I have read a decent amount on these forums and elsewhere about starting off or re-entering mountain biking on a singlespeed and I understand its a different riding style and probably has a steeper learning curve. However, the low mainence aspect and challege of riding SS intrigues me. I would classify myself as a beginner mountain bike rider despite previous experience riding trails as a teenager and until the last 3 years (I have taken up road riding/ triathlon lately) always riding a mountain bike as the bike I would ride.

    I am looking to get back into mountain biking with a nicer bike than my previous mountain bike (which I no longer own and am currently mountain bike-less!), but not spend a ton of cash until I really know what kind of riding on the trails I want to do. Singlespeeds from most bike companies seem to come with some pretty nice parts compared to similarly priced geared hardtails.

    My question is would the majority of the trails in MN be rideable on a singlespeed as a relative beginner? I am in the Twin Cities and would be spending the majority of my riding time on the trails in the metro area.

    Any thoughts from those riding SS in MN or the upper MidWest would be appreciated.

  2. #2
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    Short answer: yes.

    Long answer: Depending on what shape you are in currently, you might want to build up to Duluth and Cuyuna that have longer climbs.

    Really long answer: Put the question out to the MORC forums (morcmtb.org) to see what other riders are running. If you are buying a new bike, they might help steer you in the right direction. My personal belief is that nothing is better in the Midwest than a slack hardtail with larger wheels (650b/29er).

  3. #3
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    Singlespeed in MN?

    Single speed 29ers are great here in the metro, and very popular. In fact that's all I rode for 5 years up until I bough a full suspension this year. If you're not in decent shape you'll likely not make every climb, but you can set your gear ratio really easy to start.
    Last edited by Lic-Niner; 05-13-2015 at 11:32 AM. Reason: typo

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the responses. I am in pretty decent shape, I swam competitively all the way through college and since graduating 2 years ago I have been riding my road bike quite a bit and running some too. Part of the reason I am thinking of going SS is for the workout to help get me in even better shape and add another fun form of exercise. I also really miss being out in the dirt since I sold my old mountain bike.

    Reaching out to MORC is a good idea, I thought about that earlier too and I agree, I was thinking I would wait to tackle Duluth and Cuyuna until my skills improve.

  5. #5
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    If you are even decent shape (and it sounds like you are far beyond that) Cuyuna would be a good trail system to visit then. Except for a few trails, everything can be ridden at slow speed. If its a little above what your are comfortable with, just grab some brake.

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