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Older than I feel
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been out of the loop for quite a while. What tires are y'all riding in Midpen, Santa Clara Co. parks & open space, Santa Cruz, maybe even Coe? I'm still riding a 26" bike, and I'm well into the Clyde category these days. What works on these trails that I might be able to find in a 26" x 2.2 - 2.5" size? Thanks.
 

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always licking the glass
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DHF tires are still popular. Ardents not so much.

Not sure what’s new thats come out in 26”, but I’m sure the usual suspects are still there.
 

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WTB Vigilante front/ Trail Boss rear, Schwalbe Hans Dampf/Nobby Nic F/R, or Maxxis DHF/Agressor F/R are all available in your sizing needs and all work well for do anything year round anywhere, except mud. The first two are preferred if you lean the bike over, the Maxxis if you tend to throw it over fast and move quickly from the center to side knobs and theough the gap in traction (neither is correct, just two different riding styles and preferences). I am partial to WTB.
 

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WTB is still glad to sell you a set of Velociraptors. But aren't self-professed retrogrouches buying Rene Herse tires now?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
WTB is still glad to sell you a set of Velociraptors. But aren't self-professed retrogrouches buying Rene Herse tires now?
I'm a retrogrouch because I have a perfectly good, fully paid for 26" dual suspension bike, and I don't feel like dumping another $4K just to buy something with bigger wheels.

The René Hersé crowd is convinced that there have been no useful advances in cycling technology since 1970. That's not me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
WTB Vigilante front/ Trail Boss rear, Schwalbe Hans Dampf/Nobby Nic F/R, or Maxxis DHF/Agressor F/R are all available in your sizing needs and all work well for do anything year round anywhere, except mud.
Mud? This is NorCal. We don't get rain.

Some time ago I got a pair of NOS Nobby Nics at a bike swap meet, so that's what I put on the bike for now. I figure they have to have better grip than the 15-year-old Kenda Cortez tires they replaced.

One modern trend I'm happy to see: tires that actually measure at their advertised size. The Nobby Nics are 26x2.35 and are noticeably (and measurably) wider than the "26x2.4" Cortez. By my cheap-ass calipers, the Nics meet their spec'd ERTRO width of 60mm.

My tastes run to fat light tires without a lot of knob. Most of what I've ridden in the past has been hardpack, loose-over-hardpack, sand, maybe some redwood duff. If I ever see mud, maybe I'll get some mud tires, but more likely I'll just wait for the trails to dry up.
 

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You're in Colorado now. Are the trails there like the ones here?

What's the issue with Ardents?
Ardents are great, until they let go with no warning and land you on the ground. Supposedly they are only still made becomes some manufactures spec them OEM. The Forekaster, and Rekon varients are far better tires, but not available in 26.

Be aware, the Nobby Nic has had multiple updates over the years that greatly improve their performance. Also, be aware, Schwalbes tend to measure true to size or larger (changed with the 2021 casings, now smaller), WTB pretty accurate, Maxxis under, and Vittoria from under to over depending on the tire.
 

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always licking the glass
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You're in Colorado now. Are the trails there like the ones here?

What's the issue with Ardents?
The Ardent knobs are so flimsy they fold over really easy. If you're digging the Nobby Nic, they're a great tire. I run them here during the wet season as a rear tire. The Magic Mary/Nobby Nic are great here when it's it's wet (so winter/spring I run them)--dry, not so much. I run Assagais in the summer/fall (front and rear on my long travel bike), and DHF front and rear on my short travel bike.

if I was back in the Bay Area, I'd probably still be riding DHF front and Dissector rear. They make a nice combo here, but I was getting to the point that I was going to give up riding if I stayed in the Bay Area because I just couldn't breathe.

There's a bunch of new tires that have come out in the past 10 years, but everyone is pretty much 27.5 and 29 now that I don't think much is getting released for 26 that's new. So you know, it's been hard to find parts for 26 last year, and I donated a boxload of 26 tubes to my LBS because DJs use them, and now there's more older bikes coming back into service after last year. Same with the 9 and 10 speed stuff--definitely harder to find.

Trails here vary: CO is basically one giant rock, and there are some plains here that are more like the Cupertino type soil, the rocky janky trails that I don't particularly enjoy right now, sh!tty litter like Ft. Ord (it's more decomposed granite, but it's super loose and a lot like riding at Ft. Ord at 7-9k), some forests, some high desert, a few bike parks, and the high country riding. Then if you want to ride in the snow, you can do that too.
 

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always licking the glass
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Ardents are great, until they let go with no warning and land you on the ground. Supposedly they are only still made becomes some manufactures spec them OEM. The Forekaster, and Rekon varients are far better tires, but not available in 26.

Be aware, the Nobby Nic has had multiple updates over the years that greatly improve their performance. Also, be aware, Schwalbes tend to measure true to size or larger (changed with the 2021 casings, now smaller), WTB pretty accurate, Maxxis under, and Vittoria from under to over depending on the tire.
Ardents scare me. I ran a 2.4 in the front and a 2.2 in the rear for two rides. The second ride I got slammed to the ground on Saratoga Gap with the vague spot in the channel. Good times.

Also, the Supertrail is a really hard compound--I want to say it feels harder than a Maxxis DC. I'm not sure how awesome that is in the dry in the Bay Area, but it definitely exciting here when everything got dry.

Specialized I think still makes tires for 26. Might be worth checking out too.
 

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I'm a retrogrouch because I have a perfectly good, fully paid for 26" dual suspension bike, and I don't feel like dumping another $4K just to buy something with bigger wheels.

The René Hersé crowd is convinced that there have been no useful advances in cycling technology since 1970. That's not me.
I understand your position now. But you can understand the confusion. Usually someone describing himself as a "retrogrouch" is taking the Judy off a canti-brake hardtail from 1994 and replacing it with a chromoly fork from somewhere or other because suspension is inefficient.
 

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always licking the glass
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I understand your position now. But you can understand the confusion. Usually someone describing himself as a "retrogrouch" is taking the Judy off a canti-brake hardtail from 1994 and replacing it with a chromoly fork from somewhere or other because suspension is inefficient.
People riding full suspension bikes of any wheel size is not officially a retrogrouch? Not even Y bike lovers? Or Pro-flex?


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If a person can identify as a cat, dog, or alien, WTF is wrong with someone riding a FS 26” bike calling themselves a retrogrouch? Geez.
 

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I'm in the North Bay, but I'm running Kenda's Regolith rear and Hellkat Pro front, and really like them so far (Only three rides on them though). 26" here too. FWIW I was not a fan of the WTB Trail Boss in the rough stuff, but it worked fine on smoother trails/fire roads.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I understand your position now. But you can understand the confusion. Usually someone describing himself as a "retrogrouch" is taking the Judy off a canti-brake hardtail from 1994 and replacing it with a chromoly fork from somewhere or other because suspension is inefficient.
Steel is real on the road - though I wish I had a disc brake Trucker instead of the pre-disc-brake model as my all-around road bike.

But on the trail? Full squish please.
 

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Steel is real on the road - though I wish I had a disc brake Trucker instead of the pre-disc-brake model as my all-around road bike.

But on the trail? Full squish please.
I’m with you on full squish. As much as i like the idea of a hardtail, in the great words of Austin Powers, that train has sailed.
 

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Want a free 26 ardent race? Totally different than an ardent, for good or bad. Super light. Just pick it up from me. Used for one ride, I need DH soft rubber.
Nice offer. I will chime in, the race is different, a great rear tire.
 

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No real issue on the trails I tried. But I couldn't cut over hard enough on a certain sleepy jump track in UC to take the path I wanted, so I'm sticking with more aggressive tread patterns. Other that that, it's just going to rot in my garage so it may as well go to a new home.
 
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