Rocky Mountain Element 29er Full Suspension

4.88/5 (24 Reviews)


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Product Description

  • Compact Frame Design
  • Tapered Head Tube
  • Internal Cable Routing
  • Seat Collar Sleeve
  • Custom Anti Chain Drop Plate

Rocky Mountain Element 29er Full Suspension Pro Review

At the outset, let me clearly unequivocally state that this is merely a preview of the RM Element 29er. I have not even ridden the bike (although that opportunity will emerge in the near future). This preview will consist of pictures, RMB’s-provided information with some commentary from myself and a synthesis of information provided from RMB and from my one ride with someone on a prototype Element 29er. Continue reading →



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Reviews 1 - 15 (24 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Chris Benson a Cross Country Rider

Date Reviewed: May 4, 2014

Strengths:    Looks, weight, stiffness, handling

Weaknesses:    ...

Bottom Line:   
Bought the 2014 frame only model and built it up with sram x01, fox 32, xtr brakes, stans race gold wheels. Weighs in at 21.6lbs with pedals. Anyone who says 29ers can't handle needs to ride this bike, plus it plows over anything in it's path if necessary. Climbs like a goat, lock it out on the road and it flies.

Expand full review >>

Price Paid:    $6500.00

Purchased At:   Sacred ride nelson b

Similar Products Used:   Rocky Mountain element 26


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by dgw7000

Date Reviewed: October 5, 2013

Strengths:    This bike can do it all !! Well made, lighter than any other FS frame. Can go with 120mm fork with CTD, remote controls front and rear with the flick of the trigger. Frame is very stiff with angular bushings, easy to rebuild myself.
This bike is now the only bike I go too, My lefty is just sitting collecting dust. It's that good !!


Weaknesses:    May need to go up size to fit proper. Makes you want to sell all other bikes. Hard to find a dealer !!

Bottom Line:   
I bought the frame and built myself, went with all Shimano XTR brakes with Zee rear deraileur, XTR 11x36 cassette, Hope rotors, I9 Torch 32 hole wheelset, Sram xx1 30 tooth crank so 1x10 setup. Enve setback post, RaceFace 90mm stem. Enve riser bar, Fizik saddle, Michelin Wild Gripper tires, Cane Creek 110 headset. 2014 Fox CTD 120mm Float fork.
This bike is the best you can buy, it does all better than any other bike on the market. "Just get one"

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by ssloser a Cross Country Rider

Date Reviewed: September 16, 2013

Strengths:    Super stiff, super light, very responsive, love the geometry, spot on, 12x142 rear rocks, internal cable routing, built in SAG indicator, BB92

Weaknesses:    lame ,heavy, bulky Fox dual remote lever for rear shock. (Sending my shock back to Fox to have eyelet changed to eliminate this)

Bottom Line:   
this is my re entry into full suspension CX bikes. Previously owned a 2003 Epic, and pretty much have ridden SS since 2004. Everyone in my riding crew now has 29 full suspension bikes. I fought it for a long time. My son in law who works at Rocky Mountain dealer kept telling me how incredible this bike was. Was in a LBS and saw the 26" version and that was it. I was able to get the last xxl frameset Rocky Mountain had.

Built it up and was completely blown away. On out of the saddle climbs, it felt as stiff as my hard tail SS! Very sable on fast descents thanks to the slack head tube. With the short chain stays this bike accelerates on the climbs, amazing. How they came up with this geometry, I don't know but it's magic. It steers so quick it still scares me, still getting used to that. you sit in the bike, not on the bike as well.

Anybody who still thinks 29ers are not responsive needs to try the Element 999 RSL. Rocky Mountain has it together. What a great bike.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   too many to list

Duration Product Used:   2 mo

Price Paid:    $2800.00

Purchased At:   Elevation Cycles

Similar Products Used:   One One Lurcher, Niner Air 9 Carbon , Salsa Juan Solo

Bike Setup:   xxl Frameset, Full XTR, 2x10, Enve AM wheelset, Race Face 720 Next bars, stem, Thomson setback seat post, Specialized Phenom pro saddle,Fox CTD, Schwalbe Rocket Rons.

XXL = 23.4 lbs

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Rui.Cardoso a Cross Country Rider

Date Reviewed: September 13, 2013

Strengths:    The geometry of this bike is amazing: point it up and the rear end will take you through the roughest climbs (you still need to provide the power tough). Point it down and the bike makes you a better/faster rider with lots of confidence to roll over every sorts of obstacles and to handle sharp turns at speeds that did not seam possible before. Make mistakes and see how much the bike can cover for that and save you from hitting the ground hard.

29'er wheels go as unnoticed as they should: The advantages are there, but I don't feel any of the usually mentioned disadvantages. In fact this bike handles everything better than my previous Scott Spark 26".

I do really like the looks of the bike (not sure if this is an advantage tough). I'm 1m83 and the L size with the stock stem is a perfect fit for me.

Except for the tires, the stock configuration was already more than I could ask for. With better wheels and another Front Fork (a matter of taste), this might become the only MTB I'll need for many years to come!...


Weaknesses:    The Fox CTD Fork: Had to be serviced in order to get the whole CTD thing to work, but the Trail mode is still too soft and does not really provide a firm pedaling platform (like the one the Magura Durin SL I had in my previous bike). While racing I see myself having to use the remote lever and go into Climb mode whenever I want to sprint out of turn or when rolling fast through fire roads in order to avoid the fork to bob and steal some of the power I'm trying to put down (ideally I should be using trail mode for this in order to have a firm pedaling platform while still being able to handle eventual trail irregularities - btw the rear end is perfect in this regard).

The wheels: Probably too heavy without any added robustness or handling advantage. Rims are too narrow (18mm inner) and leak sealant if used with the stock rim tape (took the standard tape off, put a layer of electrical tape and a layer of No Tubes tape and they're fine now). This will definitely be my next upgrade.

Stock tires: I have nothing against Continental tires, but the versions that come with the bike are a joke: can't be mounted tubeless and even with tubes the sidewalls did not resist my 1'st 100 km (I'm not an aggressive rider, but ancient trails in Portugal can be really rough on tires). At this price tag I'd expect getting the Protection version of the tires to start with.

Wheels and tires are the reason why I'm not giving this a 5 in Value Rating.


Bottom Line:   
I've had this bike for 5 months and have ridden it for more than 2000 km, including several races here in Portugal and the Transrockies.

This bike really made me a betters rider: I'm more of a climber and the bike made me climb over some technical sections that were nearly impossible with my previous bikes and gives me the confidence to enjoy some downhills that caused me creeps in the past. Whenever I finish a ride, I'm already thinking of the next one and keep on pushing the boundaries of my (modest) technical abilities.

At the Transrockies I could really feel that the bike was really done for that kind of terrain, in fact at some points it felt like the bike was introducing me to it's roots! Here in Portugal, were the terrain is not always as technical the only situation were I'd say that the bike could do better is at rolling in gravel/fire roads, but this is mostly due to the front fork (Fox CTD) being too soft in trail mode and to hard in climb mode in order to handle this kind of terrain to my liking.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Too many to mention...

Duration Product Used:   5 months

Similar Products Used:   Cannondale Scalpel, Scott Spark 26", Other 26'ers...

Bike Setup:   Enve Seatpost and Handlebars, ESI grips, XTR shifters, Specialized Phenom Pro Saddle, Hope Race X2 Brakes (w/shimano XTR ice tech rotors), Maxxis Ikon Rear and Ardent Race Front tires.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Zain the Rocket a Racer

Date Reviewed: September 8, 2013

Strengths:    Rock solid ride, zip lighting. Fastest on acceleration. Rocket line speed and stable. The best single track -back end you ever ride. Installed winning ability to mediocrity riders. Probably the only bike that can make you a champ if you not one..already.

Weaknesses:    Worst brakes ever. XX needs lost of care and wears fast. Replace often.

Bottom Line:   
After having the new Specialized Epic pro, collectors colour.. And this Rocky 999 for three months Rocky must take the bow of applause. These engineers have exceeded anything made before this. Had some hardcore MTB champs ride this with me, they were blown away. It's funny how they loved the ride, expect to see this low key brand more on the trail in many parts of the world. Lookout as unless the other brands copy or REALY bring out something amazing this will dominate with the right riders nothing will come close. I ordered a new 2014 as my own home bike- not sponsored bike.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Whistler

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $8000.00

Purchased At:   NY

Similar Products Used:   Specialized epic pro , Cannondale scalpel

Bike Setup:   Xx ,avid and racing Ralph front and back

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:3
Submitted by Freditor a All Mountain Rider

Date Reviewed: August 19, 2013

Strengths:    Climbs well, Descends well, good all day trail bike,

Weaknesses:    Fox 32's have been rubbish ! I have owned this bike for only 3 months for 1 month of that the Fork has been back to service supplier...CTD wasn't working..yay they fixed that..Talas would not release unless I got off the bike..what a pain! Fork has gone back to service agent..I hope they fix it this time or Im buying a new fork for my 7k+ bike..Also rear gear cable got caught between linkage and bent cable! looks like cable is too short..new cable installed..1 piece all the way..Internal cabling can be a pain...why no remote suspension control??

Bottom Line:   
Still waiting to iron out the suspension bugs so have only managed 500k on the bike..it does most things well once dialled in to personal preferences..after using the 2X10 I feel it would have been a better option as it has jumped off a couple of times..hmm for 7k+ this bike has left me asking..why so much...its first race is coming up soon so it will be tested that will show me what its up to...

Expand full review >>

Similar Products Used:   Stumpjumper Evo, Camber 29r

Bike Setup:   Specialized Toupe 155 saddle, Shimano pedals, Kenda Nevegal 2.4 on the front, ODI grips...

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Al G

Date Reviewed: May 23, 2013

Strengths:    Decent spec for the money, no problems with SLX/XT part mix.
Light and solid frame.
Climbs like a champ and descends really well, CTD works as it should. Very efficient in everything it does and inspires you to go faster.


Weaknesses:    Not very much. Stock wheels are not that great. OEM front rotor got fried but SoCal mountains aren't exactly XC... CTD remote is huge, but I can live with that.


Bottom Line:   
Overall this was an awesome purchase, I love this bike. Stock fork/frame is awesome. From stock I replaced the wheels with Stans Arch EX and put an XT ice-tech front rotor on and haven't had any problems. This bike is a great building bike by putting the extra cash you save into the things you want. As an XC bike I don't think you can get much better for the money.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Kona (Tapia Canyon), CA

Price Paid:    $3400.00

Purchased At:   California

Similar Products Used:   Cannodale Prophet, Specialized Epic


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by MBinPC a Cross Country Rider

Date Reviewed: April 15, 2013

Strengths:    Suspension feel, descending, pedaling platform, quietness

Weaknesses:    Triple ring spec if that's not your thing.

Bottom Line:   
I don't own this bike (so I don't have that bias) but have borrowed one for about 4 long rides now. I have ridden an Epic Expert 29, an SC Tallboy, and a Cannondale Scalpel 2 29 as well. This bike descends as well as the Tallboy and better than the other two. It corners and climbs a lot more like a race bike than I was expecting. The explosiveness of the acceleration does not quite match the Scalpel or Expert IMO but it's not far off and I have not optimized the suspension tune for me yet. Plus if you are someone who races occasionally but rides a lot or races long technical courses then I think this is the bike. For me I wish it came with the option for a 2x10 or 1x11 drivetrain and I would rather have the CTD controls on the bar like the regular 970 and operate a dropper post at the seat. But this is really probably personal preference. It's a great bike for people who like to go fast over a long distance with some tough terrain mixed in.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   one near Cortez CO, and all those out my door in Park City

Duration Product Used:   2 weeks

Purchased At:   Slim and Knobby's, H

Similar Products Used:   Epic Expert 29, an SC Tallboy, and a Cannondale Scalpel 2 29

Bike Setup:   Stock

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Stan Dweight a Racer

Date Reviewed: April 13, 2013

Strengths:    Best high end MTB ever manufactured. Ever ridden period.

Weaknesses:    High cost, XX WORLD CUP BRAKES ARE LAME......

Bottom Line:   
Can't get better. No words fact .

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Whistler

Duration Product Used:   Six months

Price Paid:    $6800.00

Purchased At:   Colby's cycles

Similar Products Used:   Specialized Epic pro , Giant 0 team pro , and a few others all 2013. Nothing is similar !

Bike Setup:   Racing Ralph's snakes , Wtb carbon , replaced brakes a few months ago with real brakes XTR race.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Loopy

Date Reviewed: February 19, 2013

Strengths:    Stiff,light brilliant trail and XCMTB

Weaknesses:    SRAM XX BRAKES - what a load of junk. Agree with one of reviews , put Shimano and smile with all your teeth.

Bottom Line:   
Best bike on planet earth.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by aaron weiss a Racer

Date Reviewed: February 17, 2013

Strengths:    really light, proven suspension design, great build, no skimping on parts, stiff frame, great fit

Weaknesses:    I prefer shimano to sram, purely a personal preference. if I had to go sram I would go xx

Bottom Line:   
bought the bike and swapped out the xx for xtr. gained a little weight in doing so but the bike is still sub 23 lbs with pedals and no exotic swaps. it is actually lighter than my previous element team rsl 26" bike. if it handles anywhere near as good as my vertex 990 rsl this thing is going to be a rocket.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   salty dog race course

Duration Product Used:   3 weeks

Purchased At:   spoke n motion

Similar Products Used:   rocky mountain vertex 990 rsl, rocky mountain element team rsl 26"

Bike Setup:   full xtr with shadow plus rr der. 180 fr rotor, 160 rr. 28/40 rings on 2x crank.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Shaun a Cross Country Rider

Date Reviewed: January 28, 2013

Strengths:    A very serious race machine for short 30 / 40 /50 mile rides that doubles up as luxury long distance racer good for stage races run over three days.

Weaknesses:    Price price price. Brakes (Avid WC Xx ) need real expert servicing to get them to work as claimed. Nothing else's, but remember good things don't come free.

Bottom Line:   
Having tried the Specialized Epic for six months, the 999 is a red blooded race machine. Fast, climes like its got a motor, very light but also gives a plush ride! The suspension is near perfect and you gain confidence to try things you should not real do on XC bike. It like a trail bike very well blended with a XC bike. Comes well quipped. I am told their is a waiting list for 999 bikes now, no surprise. I am both a XC rider who enjoys to ride long three and four day races and a top 30 position racer on races of about 40 miles.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Boulders Colorado

Duration Product Used:   2 months

Price Paid:    $7800.00

Purchased At:   New York cycles

Similar Products Used:   Specialized Epic pro. Great bike but no as much the 999. Rides well, after riding the 999 its a tangible difference. It not a mystery. Try each for 10 miles on the same track. The Specialized has much better marketing hype. All that said it would be my second choice.


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by c a Cross Country Rider

Date Reviewed: January 27, 2013

Strengths:    Ridiculously light, very stiff, extremely nimble.

Weaknesses:    Not sure I'm a big fan of the CTD remote shock switch on the handlebar, but have decided that I would give it a solid try out for the first 6 mos and then dump it if I don't like it.

Bottom Line:   
Bought my 999RSL in Dec 2012, with custom build including wheels. This bike is so fun to ride. It's light, fast, and very stiff. On climbs when i would be in granny gear on my 26, i'm 3 up from that on this. It rolls so easily. I was worried about how "nimble" it would be on tight sections, particularly given the fact that this is my first 29 (my 26 was a 2006 Element 70)....it is a more comfortable ride than my E70 and is just as nimble.

I tested the Santa Cruz Tallboy and the Yeti (alum) 29ers. Those bikes ride like a big bike...not bad, just different (feels like a motorcycle). Rocky Mountain has figured out how to make this feel like a 26, with all the benefits of a 29. I cannot say enough about this. I was on the fence and really struggling with paying this much for a bicycle...but then i rode it. It's truly unbelievable. Cannot wait for the snow to clear on the big trails in the mountains to get some of my favorite rides in. Right now, I'm stuck to riding front range (still good trails, just not as much fun!) If you are on the fence, buy one...you won't be disappointed.

This bike is a great bike for someone who rides a lot / races - this is not a downhillers bike, but a good bike for cross country / climbing and racing.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Indian Creek

Duration Product Used:   1 month

Price Paid:    $7000.00

Purchased At:   SingleTrack Factory

Similar Products Used:   Santa Cruz Tallboy LT - good climber, lots of bounce and SAG...not very efficient
Yetti (995) aluminum - nice ride, but way too heavy for x country - more of a downhill bike


Bike Setup:   999RSL full carbon XT/XTR, WTB carbon seat, Easton handlebar
ZTR crest custom wheels with tubeless tires

22lbs with pedals...no, I"m not kidding.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Mike Muir

Date Reviewed: January 8, 2013

Strengths:    Climbs and corners fantastic but it really comes into its own when the trails head down. This bike is amazing when the going gets tough going down. For a short travel bike I was amazed by the terrain it will ride over. Dropper seat post just adds to its ability.

Weaknesses:    Had an issue with bottom bracket creaking. Will have to see howthe Race Face holds up.
But no riding weeknesses.


Bottom Line:   
Love tis bike and have carved huge amounts of time off my best times for my local trails and have done some seriosly long rides and still felt great. Maybe one bike can fill a lot og gaps.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Damitletsride! a Racer

Date Reviewed: December 28, 2012

Strengths:    Rolls over rough terrain with so much ease! Feels stable and solid, very nimble around the turns, I barely even noticed it was a 29er. Nice feel and ride to the bike. I bought it for racing, so far Ive just done a 24 solo and a stage race on it, but I feel it was the right tool for the job.

Weaknesses:    I didn't like the 2x10 setup that came with it so I plan on switching to 3 speed up front. Also, I haven't been major happy with the Rock Shox rear shock, it seems to leak air fairly easily. I switched to a narrower bar as the stock bars were a bit wide for me. Also, the tyres have zero cornering grip and Ive washed out on them a few times.

Bottom Line:   
I would definitely recommend this bike to anyone looking to get a 29er for the first time. Its confidence inspiring, and the handle just felt really natural right out of the box. Really nice bike overall!

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months.

Price Paid:    $3000.00

Purchased At:   Tantalus bikes.

Similar Products Used:   Giant 29er hardtail.

Bike Setup:   Stock except for Mt Zoom carbon bars, KCNC seatpost, and Ergon grips. Got some Stans race gold wheels for the next racing season.

Reviews 1 - 15 (24 Reviews Total) | Next 15

Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating


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