Arizona Mountain Biking
Gear ReviewsSpecialized

Specialized Demo at McDowell Mountains

A couple Saturdays ago I headed out to the McDowell competitive loops for the Specialized demo day. It was a beautiful morning to be out riding expensive bikes. Garth was there with his crew setting riders up with the top of the line 2008 bikes. I started the morning off with a bagel and a side order of Enduro SL.

I’d been on the 2008 S-Works Enduro SL once before, but only for a few minutes. This time I got to spend a few miles on the Enduro. The terrain at McDowell Park is all XC, so there’s not enough sustained steep downhill to really let the Enduro shine.

I gave it a few laps around the sport and tech loops and was happy with its climbing ability. My buddy really liked the Enduro he demoed at Interbike. While I enjoyed the plushness, I did feel a little awkward in the cockpit. Even though I rode a large frame it felt like I was scrunched just a bit. I was thinking I need more time and more challenging terrain on it. Then just yesterday, Global Bikes of Gilbert/Chandler (who were there with their Specialized demo fleet too) sent an email offering a free couple days rental to anyone who attended the demo. That is some sweet marketing. Now I can ride the Enduro down Geronimo like it was meant to be ridden.

Next I gave the Stumpjumper Comp 29 hardtail a spin while I waited on a Stumpy to come back.

This was only my third time rolling on the big wheels. I honestly enjoyed it. I’m not ready to make the jump quite yet though, I’d say I’m closer to going singlepeed than 29er at this point. This 29er would be a good choice if I ever decide to ride both, the frame is rigged with singlespeed sliders that make conversion simple. Riding hardtail really puts the mountain back in mountain biking.

My final ride was on the S-Works Stumpjumper FSR.

Two crank arm rotations later and I was in the zone. I immediately felt at home on this bike. I hit the tech loop for the climb, and sailed right up. Feeling so good, I connected to the Long Loop and hammered on. I didn’t quite have the suspension dialed in for plushness as much as I would have liked. Not knowing how the Brain worked I didn’t bother to try and adjust.

Didn’t get a chande to ride an Epic, except for a short spin in the lot on a customized singlespeed Epic that was someone’s baby. He wasn’t letting it out on the trails.

Specialized put on an awesome demo day. I’m sure the South Mountain demo went just as well if not better. Thanks Garth and the whole Specilized crew for the granola bars, bagles, oranges, and oh yeah, the sweet bikes.

Test the Best: Specialized Demo Days in the West.

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