If you're an outdoorsy person, chances are you've been to an REI store, whether to get some camping food, a new tent, or a fresh pair of hiking boots. Many people don't know that REI has a wide range of kids' bikes that are legit and priced to move (even more if you count your REI Membership Dividend). Some of the brands are lesser know, like REIs in-house brand Co-Op cycles, previously known as Novara Cycles. The new Co-op cycles name allowed REI to revamp its bike line by making choices that better suit the REI shopper and adventurer. These aren't the only bikes they offer, though. You’ll see names like; Cannondale, Early Rider, Stryder, and many more. Let us help you find the best bike for your little ripper at your local REI store.

Related: The Best Mountain Bikes Under $500

REI Balance Bikes
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These bikes double as walking and balance companions as much as they do a balance bike. For the most part, these rides will help your little one learn the bicycle's raw feeling and the concept of a bike, turning the bars to move and learning it has to stay upright for maximum fun. These quality rides are great because you can use them for multiple children, thanks to their sturdy build.

Remember: even when riding the smallest balance bike, kiddos should always wear a helmet. For our Best Kids Helmets, check here.

Co-op Cycles REV 12 Kids Balance Bike
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The Co-op REV 12 is the perfect bike to start your little one off on their two-wheeled adventures. The alloy frame will take all the hits and nocks that a toddler can dish out, along with the ability to pass down to a sibling or nephew. It comes with a cool sticker pack that gives the rider a way to make this bike theirs from the start.

Pros:
  • Lightweight and packable for any trips
  • The sticker pack makes the bikes customizable from the start.
  • Inflatable tires help your little rider have the grip they need and not buck them off the bike
Cons:
  • Only available in matte paint
Price: $139.00
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STRIDER 14X Sport Balance Bike
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A true marvel of a balance bike, the Strider 14X allows the rider to balance when they want and when the time comes for pedals, you can install them with an 8mm key and go. The pedals are very slim, so the balance bike is still in full effect, and if your child wants to balance and glide, they can easily. The Strider 14X comes with a coaster brake and cog installed from the get-go with a slick cover to keep hands and pants safe from harm. It boasts an easily adjustable padded seat and stem that can take a beating. Real pneumatic tires round out this cool ride!

Pros:
  • A balance and pedal bike in one
  • Slim pedals allow the bike child to choose when to pedal or glide
  • Lots of colorways and bombproof construction
Cons:
  • Availability (these are popular!)
  • Kids can be leery about adding pedaling to their favorite bike
Price: $160.00
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Cannondale Trail Kids Balance Bike

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The Cannondale Trail balance bike is super adjustable and can fit a child just learning to walk. Any parent who is Cannondale crazy will notice the Lefty style fork from the get-go; unmistakable Cannondale style. The racing red color and uniqueness will have your kiddo turning heads all around the neighborhood.

Pro:
  • It easily fits shorter children with a super adjustable seatpost
  • High bars allow the rider to be confident and stable while steering
  • Unique style and unmistakable Cannondale flair
Cons:
  • Price (similar bikes are $25 less)
  • The unique front wheel could be hard to replace if damaged
  • May max out seat post adjustment quickly for taller children
Price: $180.00
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Early Rider Limited
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This bike is ready for a future shredder, with beefy welds, riveted seat, and all the makings of a crazy-cool kids bike. The Early Rider brand is what you look for when you're serious about kids beating on equipment. These bikes boast all cycling world standards and some cool pieces that are pure genius, like the "elastic steering helper" and the easy to steer geometry. Just because it's a balance bike doesn't mean it doesn't need to shred.

Pros:
  • Classic durable brushed alloy frame
  • Inflatable tires with diamond tread for road or trails
  • Steering helper to keep the bars straight when learning to ride
Cons:
  • Premium price tag
  • The saddle is fixed to the seat post making it hard to swap saddles
Price: $200.00
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REI 16" and 20" Kids' Bikes
These bikes are for the kids who are balance bike graduates or are getting that ready-to-ride feeling. The next rung on the cycling ladder is 16" and more often 20" bikes. No, that's not the frame size, but the wheel size. Larger wheels are an adjustment for young riders but come fast once they gain their balance and confidence. These "big kid bikes" are usually single speed, but there are geared options available with easy twist-shift style shifters. Be mindful when choosing a geared bike for your child. The addition of gears eliminates the coaster (back pedal) brake.

Co-op Rev 20
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The Co-op Rev 20 is ready to rock right out of the shop. The Rev comes with 20" wheels, a rear coaster brake, and a hand-operated rear brake for practice and added power. The bike is all alloy, with a BMX-style bar to add confidence in steering and maneuverability. The bike comes with a sticker pack just like the Rev pushbike, which will excite your little shredder to make this bike their own. The 36Tx16T gearing is right on the money for speed and getting up the neighborhood's hills.

Pros:
  • Reliable build for around the block or light trails
  • Sticker pack for maximum customizable coolness
Cons:
  • No front hand brake

Price: $210.00
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Cannondale Quick 20 Kids Bike
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For those looking to keep up with Mom and Dad, you may need some gears - for that, the Cannondale Quick 20" has you covered. You don't see many kids bikes at this size with gears; that's because it is hard to get the full package of dependable shifting, cost, and the ability to take a hit all in one bundle. Wher you have a company like Cannondale crafting the bike and choosing the components - it's a bit easier. The Cannondale Quick is an excellent bike for kids learning to ride or hitting their stride for the trails ahead. The six-speed rear derailleur is just enough shifting to get up the little kick hills around that parks and rock the downhills. The Quick comes with Kenda tires and double-walled alloy wheels, so whoever riding can take some time to explore the trails - perfect for the precocious little shredder.

Pros:
  • Crankset with one-by chainring guard for bash guard protection
  • Six-speed rear derailleur with just enough shifting to learn the process
  • Powerful linear-pull brakes with adjustable levers for little hands
Cons:
  • Steep price tag
  • No coaster brakes
  • Only available in purple
Price: $435.00
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Electra Sprocket 20" Kids Bike
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Classic cool with a comfortable foot down tech from technology from the masters at Electric. The Sprocket 20" is a classy kids bike with a modern flair, perfect for any kiddo looking to explore. The unique setback seatpost allows for the rider to easily place their foot on the ground. Perfect for the new rider who may have some reservations about a high seatpost. A slightly forward set crankset allows the rider to get the proper leg extension without feeling too high on the bike. The Sprocket also comes with Big Ben Schwable tires with flat protection and a smooth center to quickly get around town. Plus, the adjustable quill stem quickly moves up and down for the fly height adjustments.

Pro:
  • A classic look that will never go out of style
  • Foot-down rider positioning build rider confidence
  • The bike has hand and coaster brakes for a transition into hands-only braking
Cons:
  • Heavier than some of the competition
  • A very upright ride may not suit some riding styles
Price: $319.00
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Early Rider Limited Seeker 16" Kids Bike
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If you're looking to hit the trails and turn some heads - this is the kids' bike to do it. The Early Rider Seeker with a belt drive is truly a beast of a bike. The 2.25" balloon (for a kid's bike) tires are great for jumps and bumps. The Gates belt drive is excellent for zero mess with greasy chains and is super lightweight. Crafted from 6061 alloy - this ride will be a gateway to mountain biking for any kiddo lucky enough to ride it.

Pros:
  • Kid specific crankset 105mm arms are easy to pedal
  • Oversized tires for having fun and rolling over bumps
  • Gates belt drive is very low maintenance—no need to lube!
Cons:
  • Price, this is not a cheap bike
  • The limited riding window for growth (but excellent resale value)
Price: $489.00
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Co-op Cycles REV 20 6-Speed Plus Kids Bike
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Adventure awaits with the Co-op cycles Rev 20 Plus bike. This bike just looks like a fun time; big tires, bash guard, disc brakes, and much more. REI opted to keep the fork rigid, and that cut down on the weight making this bike a great started mountain bike for any kiddo. The big tires easily roll over any terrain, whether snow, sand, or rock in the backyard. Perfect for exploration and learning the local trail systems in your area.

Pros:
  • Disc brakes are consistent in all weather.
  • Bash guard to protect chain and Sprocket
  • Oversized tires for rolling over anything that you and pedal towards
Cons:
  • Replacement 20” disc wheels can be hard to find
  • Replacement tire options are limited
Price: $339.00
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Early Rider Limited Hellion X20 20 Kids Bike

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If you're looking to inspire a new generation of Red Bull Rampage athletes, the Early Rider Hellion X20 is the best bet. This superbike features gear that adult downhill riders drool overall in a ride that a little shredder can feel comfortable piloting. The super lightweight 6061 and 6066 aluminum frameset with CNC'd linkage plates, and welded dropouts ensure strength and durability - and a promise that this ride will see more than a few riders. The versatile frame can run 16 or 20" wheels by replacing the rear dropouts with 3.5 in" travel for 16" wheels and 4" travel for 20" wheels. The RST Spex fork provides 100 mm of reliable front travel, and the lDNM rear shock includes advanced rebound adjust and a pedal platform to make pedaling uphill easier. The wheels are tubeless-compatible with folding Vee Crown Gem tires, and the crazy capable frame allows space for tires up to 2.4" wide tires. Top it off with a 1x10-speed drivetrain with 11-36T rear cog gear and Shimano Deore hydraulic brakes; now you have a bike that will last a few generations!

Pros:
  • Legit components and legit performance
  • Adjustable wheel size and rear travel
  • Bombproof construction means this bike can hold its resale value
Cons:
  • Price
  • RST fork could offer more adjustment for the price
Price: 1999.00
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REI 24" Kids' Bikes
So your little rider is ready to drop you on the climbs and having fun in the woods? It's time for a geared ride. The transition to a geared bike over a singlespeed with a coaster brake can be challenging for some kids, but once they learn how to shift and use the gears they'll be fine. The addition of shifting allows them to explore more and gain confidence up and downhills. These bikes are great for any little rocket to start their love of cycling longer and farther. The dependability of equipment is critical at this stage of riding, and the following bikes are more than equipped for the long haul on the road and off.

Co-op Cycles REV 24 Plus Kids Bike
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The Co-op Rev 24 Plus is a mountain bike that can do its fair share of road and trail riding. The rigid fork keeps the frontend solid and stiff for out-of-the-saddle efforts. The voluminous 2.6" tires take the place of any suspension needed and inspire confidence for riding any trail features around. The seven-speed shifting is enough to get up the hills but not enough to break the bank if a mishap occurs and a replacement is needed. The disc brakes are confident stoppers in any terrain, and the geometry is right in between real mountain and hybrid - perfect for any road you ride on.

Pros:
  • 2.6" tires are great for softening the trail and rolling over obstacles
  • The 7-spd shifter is just enough gearing for the new shifter
  • Wide riser bars are confidence-inspiring without compromising performance
Cons:
  • Tires for a 24" mid-fat are limited
  • Only one color option
Price: $379.00
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Co-op Cycles REV DRT Kids Bike

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The Rev DRT kids bike is very similar to the Rev Plus but with a suspension fork, 8- 8-speed shifting, and hydraulic disc brakes. The Rev DRT is for the little shredder that looks at the curb and says, "I'm gonna jump that," and the bike's build says, "let's go!". There's something to be said about how much abuse and knocks these bikes can take. The appearance and spec of the Rev DRT are top-notch for performance in a kids' bike and the ability to keep on ticking. The fork is a Suntour XCT and can take all the jumping and sending that Jr can dish out. The brakes are hydraulic TekTro with 160 rotors front and rear, meaning this bike will stop on a dime. Plus, the little maintenance that the brakes need is great for whoever is in charge of the family's bike maintenance. Last but not least, the 8-speed shifting with an 11-34 cassette is more than enough to climb the big hill in town and drop the parents on the downhill. A great bike for an ambitious little ripper!

Pros:
  • Suntour fork with 80mm travel
  • Hydraulic disc brakes
  • 2.6" tires only add to the inspiring ride of this bike
Cons:
  • Single color option
Price: $495.00
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Cannondale Quick 24 Kids Bike
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If your little rider likes to keep pace with their parents on bike paths, the Cannondale Quick 24" is a great choice. This slightly road-oriented ride has slick tires, 7- speeds, and is built for confidence. The setup is close to the Cannondale Quick commuter bike and boasts an eye-catching paint job like the higher-end Cannondale offerings. The bars, stem, and even crankset (144mm) designed with the little cyclist in mind.

Pros:
  • Little crank arms that are easy for a young rider to turn over
  • Slick tires that roll fast on bike paths
Cons:
  • Slick tires do not offer the best off-road grip
Price: $465.00
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Salsa Journeyman 24 Kids Bike
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If you're looking to get your kiddo to roll on a bike camping trip with you - this is the bike to help them do it. No limitations; this Journeyman is just like the adult version, drop bars and all. The Salsa Journeyman is a bike that can honestly do much more than its appearance suggests. This bike is comfortable on the road, racing cyclocross, and, more importantly, exploring around the woods and trails. There is no better way to get your little one into longer rider and exploration. Just watch out, or they'll start bugging you for their Dyno-Hub wheelset!

Pros:
  • Fantastic build quality and overall ride quality
  • Real touring capability and rack mounts
  • Drop bars provide multiple hand positions for comfort on long rides
Cons:
  • This capability and quality doesn't come cheap
  • Drop bars can be hard to get used to at first
Price: $899.00
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