Ladies, I have two specific recommendations for your upcoming mountain bike season: where to go and what to ride. This spring, I traveled to St. George to hit Utah’s southwestern trails with a group of pony-tailed rippers. We were testing the Diamondback Clutch 2, a female-specific bike that is an affordable option with ideal riding versatility.

Previewing the Gooseberry Mesa trails. Photo by Kim Fuller

Western Spirit Cycling loaded up our group for a supported overnight to Gooseberry Mesa. The terrain is like Moab without the crowds, and the North Rim Trail was perfect for testing technical sections paired with some flow.

The bike has “long and low” geometry, and rocks the brand’s Level Link suspension designed for more efficient pedaling. I’m 5’ 7”, and the medium frame fits well but still maintains a low center of gravity for controlled descents and powerful climbing. On Gooseberry Mesa, the bike was consistently responsive maneuvering stair-like rocks and flying down smooth dirt in the rain. The bike felt strong and agile, and it gave me confidence to test my limits and really enjoy the ride.

Diamondback descent. Photo by Kim Fuller

We spent day two riding loops on the JEM trail system, and the 27.5” Clutch 2 and rolled through like a dream. I played more and more with the mechanical dropper post on the steep and rocky downhills, and with 150mm front fork suspension and a 130mm rear shock, both RockShox, bumps didn’t stand a chance in the way of its wheels. It’s a fun bike, and certainly a confidence builder for any lady looking to step up her mountain biking game.

I’m an intermediate rider, and I’m increasingly trying more challenging terrain. I came home after this trip and sold a nice mountain bike to replace it with a new purchase of the Diamondback Clutch 2. It’s the next level that I need, and after some Rocky Mountain rides and a recent trip back to another slickrock desert, the bike and I are getting along just great.

Take your Utah trip in the fall when the temperatures drop back from the summer to more reasonable numbers. And if you want a clutch campsite, great guides and meals along the way, give Western Spirit Cycling a call to book a supported trip.

Kim Fuller is a freelance writer and editor based in Vail, Colorado. 

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