After a 5 month arm injury and then a 5 week cold from hell I finally got back on a mountain bike this weekend. Yup that’s 6 months of almost zero trail riding. 😦
On the plus side I got to ride my lovely red Santa Cruz Nomad that came home with me from Bow Cycle in Calgary way back in Feb 2009. So that’s 6 years of pretty regular use including 4.5 years of PNW 12 months a year riding with lots of mud and grit.
The most amazing things I can report about this bike are:
- suspension is tight and works like new
- cranks/BB, headset, shock, fork and brakes are still original
- Riding this bike compared to 2014 uber bikes I still feel the Nomad is a contender
- the Nomad has needed very little maintenance
If I couldn’t have afforded a new mountain bike I would not be held back due to riding a 6 yr old design nor would it need a lot of wrenching to keep it rolling. That’s awesome! 🙂
With 27.5 & 29er wheel sizes being all the rage how do the 26″ wheels stack up? I’ll be honest I love bigger wheels. I own a 27.5 bike and a 29er. The Nomad on “normal” 2.3″ rubber is not as efficient rolling through our very rocky and very rooty techy trails as the bigger wheel bikes. Having said that throw some 2.4″ [really closer to a 2.5″ tire] Continental Trail Kings on the bike on some wide Velocity Blunt 35 rims and you get a lot of that efficiency back with a tall 26er tire. You also get amazing traction and a super plush ride even for a 6″ travel bike.
If I couldn’t get a big 26er tire I liked as much as the Trail King I’d get rid of the Nomad. With them I think I may well keep this bike forever!
It rides so well and takes so little maintenance it’s really hard for me to justify doing anything other than keeping it as my winter bike and a back up to my newer rig.
In a society that’s drowning in disposable consumer crap it’s nice to own something that not only has stood the test of time, but keeps blowing my mind every time I use it.
Thanks Santa Cruz and Bow Cycle. You guys know what’s really important in a mountain bike. My life is better because of both of you. 🙂