I love this bike. I went out to Vegas just to ride it. Of course there were beers and friends that I only see about once a year, and more beers, but this conglomeration of steel and rubber was the focus of my trip. I was pretty sure I was going to get one, but after riding it I’ve decided F*$% YEAH I’m getting one.
I really like my fat-bikes. I like the fact that they aren’t for everyone. I’d rather stand up and mash my pedals than carefully pick my line in roots and rocks. I have a perfectly fine El Mariachi sitting in my basement. And that is where it sits. I did make myself ride it a couple of times this summer. That’s right, I had to force myself to take it out and ride it. It’s a nice bike. It’s light, carbon fork and Hope Evo hubs and SS, but it’s just not nearly as fun as my fat bikes. But when I did finally take it out, it was noticeably faster and lighter than my Pugsley, but not as fun.
Enter: the Krampus
I wouldn’t call the Krampus a Fat Bike, I’d call it fat-ish or Fat-like. I say that because it’s not a fat-bike. Yes, it has big wheels that are fatter than your standard mountain bike, but these 29+ tires are not going to give you the float that a Pug or Lander will in the snow. However, on the trails I feel like it does give you some of the fatbike advantages (traction, less likely to pinch flat, looks cooler than everyone else’s bike) without the fat-bike weight, especially the rotational weight. It eats trails. Eats ‘em. And eats ‘em up fast! I can’t wait to set up a single speed.
Weight? – Lighter than my Puglsey.
Toe Rub? – Get outta here.
Geometry? – Rides like a bike. A Monster Truck Bike.
In closing, my opinion is this: I don’t think that this bike is the answer to a single bike that will ride trails like your 29′er and ride snow like your fat-bike. It’s the next big thing in the mtn bike/29′er arena. It will probably be better at riding snow than your existing 29′er is, but I wouldn’t say it’s the silver bullet do all be all MacGyver ride for any and all situations. I definitely think MacGyver would ride one of these, but he would also have a fat-bike for the snowy rides.
You should too.
One of the test riders happens to be a world class photographer. You may have heard about his famous “That Tree” Project. He also owns the farm that hosts Chain Reactions’s Block House Roll Mtn bike race each year just outside of Platteville, WI.
Here are some of his photos from his test ride.