Rocky Mountain A50 Instinct vs. Rocky Mountain A50 Altitude- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Rocky Mountain A50 Instinct vs. Rocky Mountain A50 Altitude

    Hello all! I posted on here a few months ago prior to buying my first bike, a salsa Timberjack SLX. I absolutely love the bike, and mountain biking in general. I never thought Iíd get so much enjoyment out of riding. Recently, Iíve been doing some mild jumping and shredded the rear tire of my bike. With that being said, looks like itís time to go full suspension.

    Iíve found two demo bikes that are highly discounted in my size for sale. The Rocky Mountain instinct and altitude. Iíve been trying to research which bike would be better for my area of riding. Iím looking to do a bit more freestyle/mild jumps with downhill single track. I also like to do some long trail rides, so I guess maybe just an overall do it all bike.

    im trying to distinguish the differences between the two bicycles listed above, and the main differences in riding styles. Both are 2019 year models. Any help would be fantastic! Thanks all.

  2. #2
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    Hi mate.
    I have the Instinct A70 and absolutely love it (no different to A50 barring a few different specs, etc). It's a tad heavy (alloy frame of course, but have thrown on some lighter wheels which helped - it's now 12.9kg in Large) but it's been great for the mainly trail-style riding I do as well as the occasional jumps and plenty of rocky downhill single track (am in Australia). I haven't ridden the Altitude, though, and I think it might depend a bit on your height but for all-day missions, the Instinct has been great. Hope that helps.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the information brother! That does help. If you donít mind me asking, how tall are you? Iíve heard Rocky Mountain runs a tad small.

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    I am just on 6ft tall, with longer arms/torso, shorter legs. I could maybe have gone to an XL on the Instinct but am okay on the Large. Compared to some of the other trail/AM bikes out there, that are quite long/low, the Rockys do seem to run slightly shorter for reach, but I like it as it is easy to flick around, etc.

  5. #5
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    Gotcha! Thanks. One of the Rocky sizing guides I saw had my height (6'1, maybe 6'2 on a good day) as a size large. I have a XL Salsa Timberjack at the moment which feels rather big, and it feels like I'm riding on top of the bike. I think I may prefer something a bit smaller as you mentioned to throw it around a bit, but obviously not too small.

  6. #6
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    If you get the chance to try both sizes, definitely take it. Also remember the Instinct and Altitude have Rocky's Ride-9 geo adjustment, which allows you to tweak head-tube angle, seat-tube angle, reach, etc., so I run mine in the "neutral" setting, but am about to swap to "steep" to give me a bit more reach and I am looking to put a 60mm stem on (it has a 50mm at the moment) just to see if it makes much difference.

  7. #7
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    Ahh gotcha! Yeah I'm not familiar with the Ride-9 at all, so that may help quite a bit! Both of the bikes I'm looking at (Instinct and Altitude) both are on sale right now for around $1,900 bucks as they were demo bikes which I still think is a pretty fantastic deal.

  8. #8
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    That's cheap! Rockys are expensive here in Australia so either one of those will be a bargain. Plus you can just upgrade components as you can afford to/if you want to as well - the frame is super strong so will last years.

  9. #9
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    That's what I'm sayin'! You kinda have me sold on the Instinct, as I LOVE the color. I've really only been considering a Rocky Mountain and have kinda been eyeing a couple Santa Cruz. I just wish it was more clear which bike was better for specific type of riding. It looks like they have the Altitude listed as an enduro bike, and the Instinct as a XC bike.

  10. #10
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    Instinct is definitely more Trail than XC (Element is the XC model) but the good thing with the Instinct is it can be a great all-rounder; throw some light wheels on and go XC, keep it as is for general trail riding, or add a beefier wheel set and a FOX 36 (or similar) and you can ride enduro no probs! Super versatile.

  11. #11
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    Thatís fantastic! Have an extremely scrub question for you: what is the difference between XC and enduro in easy to read terms lol

    the instinct BC has the 36s on as well, looks like a solid bike

  12. #12
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    Hi mate.
    XC is generally smoother, less technical. Enduro is more challenging, rougher. I reckon if you google it you'll get a better explanation than my one.

  13. #13
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    Thanks for all of your help!! I seriously appreciate it.

  14. #14
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    No worries mate. This forum/website is pretty awesome for advice - there's always plenty of folks around to help answer questions.

  15. #15
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    I demo'd the 27.5" tire version of the Instinct (called the Pipeline) and found the bottom bracket to be really low for the type of trails I normally ride. I was smacking the cranks on nearly everything. That was with the Ride9 in the neutral setting. Putting it in the steep setting would have helped some. My bike shop said the Instinct's BB would be higher because of the larger wheels and tires, but I never tried one. I tried other bikes with 29" wheels and just didn't feel comfortable on them in tight switchbacks, climbing, and cornering. I demo'd an Altitude A30 and fell in love so I bought a C50. It climbs and descends really well. I don't do jump parks or catch big air, so the Altitude might seem like overkill, but it is really comfortable and the long travel lets me ride longer on the rough trails we have here in Colorado.

  16. #16
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    Thank you all for the awesome information. I ended up going with the Instinct A50, as it was in much better shape than the Instinct I was looking at. It honestly came down to wear on the bike. I think both bikes are pry similar enough for the type of riding I do as a noob that I wouldn't noticed a huge difference, personally.

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