'Twas a month before fat tire, and all threw the valley. The hobos were all hanging, behind the shop in the alley. Then at the door arose such a clatter, I sprung from work to see what was the matter.
In comes a box the size of a bike! I knew that inside was a thing I would like.
Let me begin by stating that in my way of thinking, all bike people can be summed up in three categories. You have your "bike nerds," your "bike jocks," and last but not least, you have "the barbarians." A great barometer for finding out which category someone falls into is to show them a Surly Krampus.
Some might say "that thing is too heavy," others say "it doesn't have enough gears," while others doze you over to get a turn on the beast! As soon as I assembled the Krampus, I was enamored. I shot out the back door of Brown Cycles and spent the next four hours grinding from one end of the valley to the other.
This bike makes you pedal as hard as you can, everywhere you go. Just the sound of those huge 29-inch by 3-inch Knards inspires you to roll as hard as you can.
The next day I had to work, crap; but it didn't stop Chris Brown and me from hitting a secret trail that I have. Sand, rocks, steep loose grades, glorious! Krampus did not disappoint. It handled all of it including a huge pile of manure my old man is saving for the end of the world or something.
It's almost as if the mad scientists at Surly found a way to mine my dreams. If you knew me, you would understand that is a scary thing. I LOVE THIS BIKE! Now down to brass tacks, it's not really a fat bike, it's not a snow bike, it's not really a rigid 9er, Krampus is all of these. The lack of suspension was kind of refreshing to me, although the aforementioned 29" by 3" Knard tires give plenty of cush for my liking. And I like to ram a bike into anything I can find. The geometry of the frame is a little more raked out than the Karate monkey or the Pugsly. This makes for a super-stable ride bombing down rocky hills. Plus it looks bad ass. My only complaint was the 31-inch bars that came stock had to go - personal preference. I'm not a tall guy.
In conclusion, if you get the chance to ride one, do it. Like all of Surly's offerings, you'll either "get it" or you won't.
And they heard me exclaim as I rode out of sight, merry Krampus, you bastards. Have a hell of a ride!