First off, let’s talk a little about my tire choice for Marquette. I took off the fat Hodag 3.8 and put the smaller Chupacabra 2.8 on. Thinking that I was going to rip it up with the smaller tire. And for the second time I was wrong. As I mentioned the first time I had it on its just too small and does not roll over stuff like a taller tire. As I said before the wheel\tire combo is smaller than a normal 29er MTB. Hated it. Won’t do it again.
So much more fun with the bigger tire two weeks ago. Smoother and easier to ride.
However I did get a new PR on Bensons Grade. Took an entire minute off my best time up that hill and thats not too hard when you’re still at 11 minutes. So thats one thing the smaller lighter tires did better than the bigger. But that just a few minutes of a ride that lasted hours.
Anyway, thats water under the bridge cuz my new Farley EX came yesterday. And I had it less than two hours before I was out on the trails.
Take a look at that beauty. It’s been two years since I had a rear suspension. If you look back a few posts I was undecided to get the heavier EX or the lighter 9.9. And Im so glad I picked the EX. The first thing I did to the bike was cut the bars down to a respectable 710mm and remove the dropper post which has no need where I live. Mounted the tires tubeless which was very quick and easy. Threw on some pedals and weighed it. 30 pounds. The heaviest bike I’ve ever owned that was not steel. But still, when you think about it, it still is a fat bike. So maybe that number is not so bad.
I didnt have the bike more than an hour and I was off to the roughest trails in the area.
I’ll tell you that I forgot about the 30 pound weight in a minute. It’s been so long that I rode a rear suspension that I forgot how it was. And my full suspension bikes in the past were all XC bikes. So I got quite the awakening to trail tuned longer suspension.
It was frickin amazing. Super rocky section that had me standing, not pedaling and hanging on for dear life on my hardtail Farley I was now sitting and pedaling if I wanted to.
Once I got used to the different geometry of the bike Im pretty sure I was way faster than my hardtail. Maybe not in the climbing but everywhere else. I could keep the gas on over the roughest sections.
And this is not new with full suspension bikes but its been so long for me its almost new again. I could care less about the weight. This is the bike for me. I always said i would get a full suspension fat bike the second they had one. You could not slap the smile off my face.
Also new to me is the trail geometry of the EX. You sit back on the bike a bit more and once I got used to it felt way more fun. Really, I should have been on a EX all those years I struggled with a XC bike on the fun trails.
I still have the 29+ wheels from the hardtail Farley and Im not so sure I will use them here. The carbon 80mil Wampa,s seemed just fine. I’ll think about it.
One thing I missed was the Di2. My hardtail 9.8 is sold and is taking the Di2 with it. I will be considering making the upgrade in the future. This time the new XT stuff. Little cheaper.
In closing, the Farley EX 9.8 is a keeper. To those who said a front fork on a fat bike is “not needed” and then those now who say the full suspension fat bike is “not needed” come and ride this thing. If you ride hard and all summer and winter this is one bike to rule them all. I can’t wait until the next ride. (tomorrow)
More is it develops.