Summer Gear Locker: 2017 Transition Scout Carbon MTB, Cannondale Synapse Sora road bike and more for cyclists
Longboard toy chest
Avalanche by Never Summer | $162.99
Never Summer has been in the longboard game for years now and it shows in the manufacturer’s evolving line of boards. There’s a little something for everyone coming out of the Denver factory — downhill, cruiser, carving and flex decks — and the Avalanche is one of the finest hard-charging DH models on the market. The 39-inch twin deck (10-inch wide) is made by hand with layered wood, a gentle rocker shape, fiberglass wheel wells, and P-tex on the nose and tail, weighing in at 3.9 pounds (deck only). It’s the last DH machine you need.
Pin-Up Series by KOTA Longboards | $229-$299
Colorado’s other major longboard manufacturer, KOTA of Denver, keeps things core with a sprawling line of hand-pressed and hand-painted decks. The Pin-Up Series features the same tapered board style — 44 inches long, 9-3/8 inches wide with seven-ply American maple construction — and some of the coolest graphics around: old-school, WWII-era pin-up girls, like the ones in your grandpa’s workshop. Buy the deck only for $229 or buy the complete for $299 (includes Caliber 180mm trucks, 73mm/80A Seismic Speed Vent wheels, KOTA precision bearings and half-inch risers).
Cruiser Series by Sector 9 | $55-$79
With 11 different lines for 11 styles of riding, California’s Sector 9 is one of the biggest names in longboarding. Pick a board and it’ll be reliable, but our money is on the Savage deck ($72), part of the laid-back Cruiser line. At 33 inches long and 9 inches wide it’s made for mellow afternoons on the Lake Dillon rec path or laps through the bowls at Breckenridge skatepark. All Sector 9 boards come as decks only from the company website (no trucks or wheels included).
Biking is the skiing of summer.
Seriously — the similarities between the two are almost eerie. Both feed adrenaline cravings, look pretty damn cool (when done well) and, unfortunately, drain bank accounts faster than straight-lining a 40-degree face.
That said, our collection of summer biking gear isn’t exactly cheap, but it toes the line between affordable and outrageous. If you’re willing to pay a little more for reliable gear, know that every item on this list is made to last. If only we could say the same for adrenaline.
Scout Carbon MTB by Transition | $2,999-$8,799
It ain’t easy being the new kids on the trail, but Transition of Washington state has managed to make it happen — and then some. Just a decade after starting as a boutique manufacturer, the company is now Yeti-sized, with complete lines of downhill, enduro, cross-country and dirt-jumper bikes for guys and gals. The 2017 Scout Carbon takes everything the owners have learned over the years and packs it into a sleek, sexy enduro-style bike: 27.5-inch tires, 140 millimeters of travel up front, 125 mm of travel in the back and low-lying geometry, all in a package weighing no more than 28 pounds. It comes as a frame only ($2,999) or high-end complete package ($8,799) with options for any price point in between.
S3 Disc by Cervélo | $4,499
If pro cyclist Mark Cavendish can spend weeks upon weeks in the Cervélo S3 disc saddle, anyone can. This mid-range aero road model from the Toronto-based manufacturer features everything from the original S3 — aero-shaped frame, all-carbon fork, Shimano components, including disc brakes — plus a few new specs, like an asymmetrical bottom bracket that’s lighter and stiffer than past models. The engineers even shaved bits and pieces from the seat tube to make it 40 grams lighter. It doesn’t have a suspension or other trinkets, but your touring friends will still be jealous — if they can catch you.
Synapse Sora by Cannondale | $1,030
Like winter sports, serious road biking comes with a major barrier to entry: price. Not everyone can afford $2,000-plus for a bike — rent still needs to be paid — but there’s something to be said for a brand-new, off-the-shelf model you’ll have for years to come. That’s where the Synapse series from Cannondale comes into play. Every bike in the line is made for long, lengthy rides (read: comfortable) with prices ranging from $870 to nearly $8,000. The Sora nine-speed ($1,030) is a near-perfect starter bike for anyone who wants to ride on the road, featuring an aluminum alloy frame, Shimano drivetrain and components, Promax rim brakes, and 700 centimeter wheels.
Code disc brakes by Avid | $244
If you’re the last person on the trail with no disc brakes, that’s fine. It’s also fine if you’re still riding the same set you got when you bought the bike — now is time for an upgrade. A good starting point is the Code from Avid, a hydraulic brake system with four-piston calipers. The entire system is made of lightweight aluminum and weighs 410 grams, making it perfect for any cross-country or enduro MTB setup. Just don’t try to save a few bucks on your DH setup — these won’t last long on the incredibly nasty stuff.
Transfer dropper post by FOX | $294
It’s official: a dropper seatpost is the only way to ride these days. Don’t believe us? Spend a day (or even an hour) on the trail with a post dropper and you’ll notice the difference between fast, fiery descents with a lowered post and brutal, agonizing descents with the post jammed into your tailbone. Price can be an issue — it’s hard to find a reasonable model for less than $200 new — but chances are good you won’t be replacing the FOX Transfer anytime soon. The hydraulic system can be routed with internal or external cables and features three drop options: 4 inches, 5 inches and 6 inches, all controlled by a one or two-lever system. One thing’s for sure: that golden-bronze Kashima coat sure looks sexy.
W2 Sport Hoody by Ibex | $110
Your bike spandex might be fashionable-ish, but it’s anything but warm when Summit County winds pick up. Enter the W2 Sport Hoody, a lightweight Merino wool zippered jacket with a touch of nylon from Canadian manufacturer Ibex. It’s perfect for chilly morning rides or afternoon beers when 70 degrees feels like 60.
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