|Not now.....but soon.|
Smaller statured folk rejoice! (Well.....if you've always wanted a steel bike for bombing around on that looks like this) Surly has let it be known that a smaller wheeled version of the Straggler is on the way. This may be good news to you or someone you know.
It will also be good news to tinkerers and those who want more 650B tires that aren't all "frenchy". It looks as though this bike will have 650B Knard 41's. I don't think "knard" is a French word, so this is why I find that it is different from most of the fare for this wheel size which seem to try to evoke some sort of higher brow, continental flair with their monikers. I don't think anyone will accuse Surly of being "refined" in that manner!
The Guitar Ted Death Ride Invitational may be traveling through black bear territory. A recent news story circulated around this week indicates that near one of the pass through towns on the route a black bear and possibly two cubs are roaming freely around the countryside.
While I think the likelihood of our small band of riders coming across such critters is small, it is a possibility since we will be riding in some of the more remote areas in Clayton County. I find this development incredible since during my time living here in Iowa we have gone from almost no wildlife beyond rabbits, racoons, birds, and muskrats to having abundant amounts of critters that were the furthest thing from my mind when I was a child. Bobcats, mountain lions, turkeys, and Bald Eagles are just a few of these that simply didn't exist, or were so rare as to be legendary when I was a younginz. Now we're talking about black bears? The DNR says that if this bear does have cubs it would be the first such instance on record in 140 years. Amazing!
|Mumbo Jumbo- Fat bikes are mainstream now.|
Back in late 2010 the fat bike riders were stoked to the gills because there was going to be one other fat bike tire available. There was the recently discontinued Endomorph, (a moment of silence, please), and the new "Larry". It was party time for fat biking as we knew it then.
Now, not five years down the trail, there are so many tire announcements and models coming online to purchase that it is almost easier to say which companies don't make a fat bike tire than to name those who do. It used to be something of an inside joke to talk about when Schwalbe might make a fat bike tire. You know, if they did, fat biking would be done and gone mainstream. That would never happen, right?
Right. Well........apparently fat biking is "over" then. It looks as though Schwalbe is actually going to be producing a fat bike tire, or at least have one branded. In typical Schwalbe fashion, it bears a ridiculous name.
All this seems so much like "cashing in" and manufacturers basically admitted to as much when the 27.5" bandwagon was cranked up a couple of years ago. No one wanted to "miss the party" like many did due to dragging their feet on entering the 29 inch mountain bike game in the late 00's. Certainly, by the looks of it, no one could be blamed for doing such with regard to tires for fat bikes! All I know is that in my simple mind the power of economics should sway prices to the lower end of the spectrum. I just do not see how the fat bike market can sustain the growth and with so much new product coming online, it would seem that supply will be bigger than demand. Good for fat bikers, hopefully, that want new treads.