Ridin’ High

From 29ers to custom road rides to a bike-in-a-box, here are our picks for the best rides you’ll find in stores this spring.

ROAD

Specialized Roubaix Pro SRAM

When it comes to a day-to-day road bike, you won’t find a better investment than any iteration of the trusty Roubaix. The bike can handle anything you want to tick off in the Front Range. It’s a responsive ride that’s just as happy grunting up Mount Evans as it is cruising the plains. We like the SRAM package, which delivers the most componentry bang for your buck.

$4,400; specialized.com

Felt AR 4

We are constantly puzzled as to how Felt can continue to produce such fantastic bikes for the money. The AR4 delivers a monocoque carbon frame and Ultegra componentry for a good deal less than similar rides. A sleek, confident performer on the pavement, it’s the bike to choose when you want to get serious but still worry about paying the bills.

$3,499; feltbicycles.com

 

Serrota MeiVici SE

Ready to go all out on a custom cycle? Serrota rides high in the saddle when it comes to the bike-of-your-dreams fetish. It’s worth the money—stiff, responsive, classy, light, built to fit. Please tell us how it feels when you buy it. We keep drooling over it but Serrota’s PR firm doesn’t seem yet willing to send us a free sample.

$8,395 (starting); serrota.com

MOUNTAIN

Yeti AS-R Carbon

We love to support homegrown Colorado brands and Yeti makes it so easy. Hop on this baby and you can tell it was designed for our state where we require a ride that can both climb like an x-c racer and bomb sketchy downhills like a trail bike. The AS-R Carbon does both incredibly well thanks to, among other things, the carbon frame (which has become almost mandatory) a suspension placed to get the most out of pedaling and a tipped back head angle for descents. It’s the ideal bike for giving your buddies a good beat down.

$2,700 (frame); yeticycles.com

Kona Abra Cadabra

Kona adapted its Magic Link suspension in order to deliver versatile downhill-esque performance in a scandium frame that can bomb technical downhills or tackle grueling climbs. The Magic Link works by sensing the terrain under tire and jumping the four-inch travel suspension up to six inches when necessary. Plus, it’s nicely spec-ed for the money with Shimano XT and a Fox 32 Float RL fork.

$3,699; konaworld.com

Santa Cruz Tallboy

Once you spend time on a 29er, you become a convert, especially when it comes to rolling over the rocky junk the Front Range can dish out. And no bike symbolizes the new dominance of big wheels better than the carbon Tallboy. The five pound frame is a ride with all the smooth performance of the brand’s famed Blur, but it was designed specifically for those big wheels.

$2,350 (frame only); santacruzbicycles.com

TOUR

Moots Mootour

Thanks to SNS couplings, you can take this cylce to Napa, Tuscany, Bolivia… wherever you want to explore by bike—but it’s just as competent cruising Colorado. Relaxed geometry and longer chain stays make it easy to load and ride for hours. It’s a titanium bike for traveling that will last forever.

$3,125 (frame); moots.com

Electra Ticino 18D

With all the elegance of something you would see in a Fellini movie, the Ticino is porn for bike geeks. Every detail on the bike is immaculate, down to hand-hammered fenders and an updated version of the classic French TA crank. The real payoff, however, is just how much fun it is to pedal it down the bike path. $1,500; electra.com

 

 

 

SINGLE SPEED

Specialized Stumpjumper 29 SS

Meet the perfect bike for hitting the trails before or after work. Runing a single speed 29er, you are sure to at least look hip but this bike truly brings it thanks to a stiff carbon frame and carbon crankset with ceramic bearings that will deliver enough power to keep your multi-geared bros at bay.

$2,400; specialized.com

 

CUSTOM

Mosaic 29er SS

This custom 29er single speed was built in Boulder by frame wizards Aaron Barchek and Nick Phillips. Their built-to-order brand Mosaic is a work of performance art. The performance? Aggressive geometry keeps the big 29er nimble. Art? Just look at it. Want one? You can test ride Mosaic bikes at Full Cycle in Boulder and Fort Collins.

mosaiccycles.com/fullcyclebikes.com

 

 

MUST HAVES

The best new rear hitch rack out there also serves as a repair stand. The nifty Kuat NV ($495; kuatinnovations.com) will also hold those pesky through axle forks. When we head out on an epic all-day ride we strap on the airy Deuter Race EXP Air ($129; deuter.com). The back ventilation system means it doesn’t feel like a big pack but it still holds 900 cubic inches and comes with a built-in rain cover and three-liter reservoir. Lazer’s  Genesis ($100; lazerhelmets.com) adjusts with a roller system in the back and is built with removable LED lights for commuting. Named for one of our favorite lunch-break rides, Smartwool’s Betasso shorts ($150 smartwool.com) keep your most sensitive parts comfy thanks to a snap-in merino liner that regulates temperature (and stink). Nalini impressed us with its Corniola Bib ($95; nalini.it) and Magnetite Jersey ($90). Both are made in Italy and performed like far higher-priced European threads. Rudy Project’s Magster (prices vary according to lens; rudyprojectusa.com) was designed to fit bigger craniums and includes a stainless steel perforated grill that keeps them from fogging on sweaty rides. Look for Rudy’s Sunglass Combo through which you can get a free Rudy helmet or polarized lens when you buy certain Rudy shades. Shimano’s new custom fit shoes ($300; http://bike.shimano.com) are a steal at that price. And we couldn’t be happier with Shimano’s Ultegra 6700 group, WH-6700 Road Tubeless wheels ($650), which run at lower tire pressure. We only wonder why it has taken this long to develop them.

POWER SPEAKS

Tour de France commentators like to reference riders’ power output levels. They do that thanks to SRM wireless power meters that record info in the crank and relay it to coaches. That data helps them pace athletes, leading to better results. Power meter training is a hot trend in cycling and no longer limited to pro racers. To learn about and buy your very own power meter go to Boulder-based FasCat Coaching (fascatcoaching.com). You’ll get $450 of free coaching if you purchase a meter. Want more? FasCat coach Mark Rossman was so excited he wrote up some excellent training tips just for Elevation Outdoors. Read them at ElevationOutdoors.com/index.php/fascat-training-tips

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