Any ideas for a good Mountainbike?

I don’t drive a car, I get to my waters by train, on foot or by pedal. I’ve owned some cheap, crappy mtn bikes but for 2018 I’m thinking about investing in a good, solid bike that can get the job done.

Does anyone here have any advice on what I should look for?
It’s going to be used as a fishing vehicle, on forest roads and mostly trail of different levels of ruggedness. It don’t have be a comfortable ride, as long as it gets me from A to B without breaking down I’m happy. My biggest concern is flat tires, I know how to fix them but I rather don’t.

Solidness and hasslefree are the leading words here. Also, I’m no millionaire -just sayin’.

What should look for, and lookout for?

I mountainbiked when I lived in Colorado and still do to this day. The bikes I owned have become more expensive over the years as my skill level increased. I currently own a fully suspended Giant Anthem X but you would be well off with an entry level hardtail. Stick with the major manufacturers and don’t go to a big box retailer. Go to a bike shop, get measured and try out several bikes from differing manufacturers. Trek, Specialized, Cannondale, Santa Cruz, Giant, etc. You’ll be happier in the long run because these brands start out with robust parts that can be replaced. Disc brakes are the norm now but lean towards hydraulic vs mechanical because hydraulics are more consistent and don’t fade.

Thank you!
That’s exactly the kind of advice I need.
I’ve been looking at Cannondale, seems like good stuff for a reasonable price and the local bike shop carries them!

Cannondale have been around since the 90’s from what I can remember.

Also been looking at a brand called Trek, they’re on sale at the local bike shop and has good specs from what I can tell and from what you’ve recommended.

Can’t go wrong with Trek either.

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1994 Specialized Rockhopper Comp FS

I am satisfied with this
I have two pairs of wheels for pavement and gravel roads
(It is a slick tire and a block tire)

I think the selection of tires is important for flat tires countermeasure

riding comfort is important for saddles and grips

Saddle is a brooks professional used for about 40 years
Other parts are also changed to their liking

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Thank you for the input!
And yes, I will pay a lot of attention to the tires, also adjustable shock absorbers would be nice.

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What are your thoughts on those fat tire bikes? Most of the time they are probably overkill, but I fish winters and fish the ocean a bit. Been circling on them for years, but just have not had enough motivation to pull the trigger on such a freak bike…especially seeing how I do not own a traditional. One of my areas I fish I have seen more fat tire riders even in normal conditions.

FYI…some guys who fish the cape cod canal, use women’s bikes. They call them canal cruisers. I think the idea, in waders, its easier to get on and off the bike. These guys are pretty salty folk…no one is gonna call them out on the fact they are peddling a girls bike.

google images search “cape cod canal surfcasting bike”

I can’t objectively say anything about the fat bikes. Those are a niche bike designed for a specific purpose. Bigger tires mean more weight. Lower gearing is needed to keep them rolling. I would not need one myself but there are others who might. I test rode a fat bike but it had an electric motor assist. I pedaled normally and the motor would assist bringing the bike up to 20mph. It was great but not for 5 grand.

Fat tire bikes are wicked fun to ride and are awesome in all kinds of weather (snow included). They’re actually not a lot different than riding a 29er. Yes, they are slightly heavier but if you’re not paying $5000 or more for a bike, you’re not likely going to notice a huge difference.

I think $750 or so is one transition point in bike quality, I think most notably in weight, for starters. In the $1000-$3500 range, most of the variation of what you pay for is the quality of components and brand name. To be frank, if you’re not riding many miles everyday, most people have a really hard time discerning the difference between the mid to high range components. I’ve been mountain biking for 25 years and have ridden the same bike with $500 set of components and with $2000 and couldn’t tell a difference. Some people swear they can, but unless you’re a competition rider, I’m skeptical.

If you’re in the US (or don’t mind paying for shipping) if highly encourage you to check out It’s not very well known, but the quality you get for what you pay is great. Several of their bikes have won awards from several reputable outdoor magazines over the years.

BlockquoteI think $750 or so is one transition point in bike quality, I think most notably in weight, for starters.

That’s about the price point I’m aiming for. Thank you for the input.

It seems to be the same as with fishing gear (and probably other gear too), avoid the cheapest, quality costs, luxury costs a lot (and you can certainly be fine without it).

From a different point of view

I think that the most interest is the price around the weight

I think that the weight of general mountain bike rather than competition bike is
12 kg to 13 kg is the most cost effective

If it is less than that, unit price to reduce 1 g will be very expensive

Mountain bikes under 10 kg are certainly wonderful,
but they are very expensive and become nervous handling

Excellent point and I completely agree. I have a friend who ride competition for a few years and he said the same thing. He was more nervous riding the very light weight bikes than the mid range bikes.

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I;ve been cycling most of my life and would be happy to weigh in. :slight_smile:

What sort of terrain do you most frequently see yourself riding? Single-track with a lot of technical spots? Longer distance on gravel forest roads? Paved roads to fishing areas and then short off-road jaunts to the stream from the road?


Thank you Glenn!

It’s a lot of long distance on gravel roads, in the mountains so it’s a lot of up and down.
Not so much paved roads.
Gravel mostly and some off-road and hiking trails (where it’s allowed).

Are you in the States or Sweden? I’m not super familiar with the bikes you’d find in Europe, but if they are available, you can probably score a super nice bike within your budget if you went with something like a 90s Specialized Stumpjumper or Rockhopper, an older Trek 830, or a GT Outpost.

Regardless, I’d look for an older, high-quality steel hardtail with front suspension that has a lockout or a rigid front fork if you don’t foresee yourself doing a lot of more technical riding. Maybe something with a larger front triangle and a more upright, rather than a slack geometry. Just make sure the frame geometry is comfortable for YOU. You might consider adjusting the handlebars to be a more upright and less aggressive configuration as well… Wide/high volume tires will also provide you with a more comfortable ride and keep you more stable on the gravel.

Happy riding!

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I’m in Sweden.

That’s some real solid advice you’re presenting, I will think about this when time comes for purchase sometime this winter.
I’ve been shying away from ‘pre-owned’-market, even though this is usually where bargains are made, 'cause I haven’t been sure what to look for. Now I feel more confident, thanks!

Happy to help, Friend!

Please feel free to reach out if you have additional questions, Joakim. :sunglasses:


Going in the vein in which Glenn has recommended (which I agree with his assessment) I would also encourage you to consider getting a handlebar slightly wider than shoulder width. Though not too wide. That will make for a more comfortable ride too.

If possible, I would also recommend getting measured for the correct size bike. Too many places will put you on a bike because they want to sell it and they’ll tell you to just raise the seat. Bad idea. Most good bike shops will measure you. If not, there’s plenty of information online to help you do so (though that’s second best to having someone experienced do it). It’s easiest if you have a friend/partner/spouse to help you.

I don’t know if this helps but at least for reference, here’s my personal measurements for bikes.

Height: 195cm
Inseam: 91cm
Ideal bike size: 22-24” (depending on frame geometry)

Oddly enough, most major bike brands in Sweden use inches and not centimeters for bike sizes.

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