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  1. #1
    Senior Member nebrider's Avatar
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    Difference between trailriding and XC?

    Probably a silly question, but I'm just curious.

    Also, I found nothing with search.
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  2. #2
    bikes are sexy Lebowski's Avatar
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    XC is generally less technical, there are less obstacles on the trails. trails are usually well groomed. drops are small, usually a foot or less. suspension for XC bikes is normally 3-4 inches of travel, its kinda like road cycling on dirt. a lot of XC riders are all about going really fast on thier lighter weight bikes.

    trail bikes normally have 4-5 inches of travel and are made a lot beefier and can weigh more. trail riding is kinda like riding on a hiking trail, the trail builders may not have bikes in mind. there are gnarly parts where you might have to get off and walk, you might have to ride over a flowing creek bed. there could be lots of rocky sections. there arent as many hard tails in the trail bike category, suspension and control are key.


    XC geometry is usually more upright and the bikes have shorter wheel bases
    trail bikes usually have a more slack geometry and lower standover height
    Last edited by Lebowski; 05-06-09 at 10:21 PM. Reason: spelling
    [2010] Specialized P3 - [09] Origin8 Scout 29er - [08] Specialized Epic Comp - [08] Specialized Allez - [06] - Specialized SX Trail II - (((In Pieces - '08 Jamis Parker -- '07 specialized Hardrock Sport -- 2005 KHS DJ200)))

  3. #3
    Senior Member nebrider's Avatar
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    That's... exactly what I was looking for. Thanks.
    2004 BP Stealth w/Centaur
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  4. #4
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    An inclination towards more lycra and clipless pedals on XC... more baggy shorts and platform pedals on trail riding...

    where I'm from anyways...

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    Trail = clipless and baggies for me. Freeride = platform and baggies.

  6. #6
    ed
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    Trail riding = riding trails on a bike...using pedals that you like...wearing some sort of clothing so the saddle doesn't split your nethers.
    Last edited by ed; 05-06-09 at 11:20 PM.

  7. #7
    Is that the MEEWN?! greenpeppers's Avatar
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    I hope they never stop making hardtail trail bikes!

  8. #8
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    No difference between the two. It's just a way for the average mountain biker to dissociate from world of XC racing.

  9. #9
    omygodomygod TwinCam's Avatar
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    I hope they never stop making hardtail trail bikes!
    [mba mag]As long as there's paved sidewalks and dirt paths there will always be a place for hardtails.[/mba mag]

  10. #10
    use your best eye kenhill3's Avatar
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    It seems silly to need to define any of this crap.

    mountain biking
    "I tell you, We are here on earth to fart around, and don't let anybody tell you any different." - Kurt Vonnegut jr.

  11. #11
    mechanically sound frankenmike's Avatar
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    Yeah, when I started riding ~12yrs. ago, there was only XC and downhill(downhill racers used hardtails back then). I've always considered it XC if you spend most of the saddle time climbing, even if there is plenty of gnarly, technical ups and downs. A rose by any other name...

  12. #12
    Fourth Degree Legend junkyard's Avatar
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    Marketing ploy aimed at confusing stoner, burnout mountain bikers.
    Quote Originally Posted by dminor View Post
    The caveat with a strap-on, of course, is you will have to get creative with a couple of lock cables and an anchor point

  13. #13
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    No suspension on my XC bike. I prefer it that way. Why would anyone need suspension for trails that are "usually well groomed. drops are small, usually a foot or less." ??? Just learn to ride with good technique. AFAIK full suspension rigs were setup to take drops that were just too big to absorb with arms/legs, which wouldn't be in the category of XC riding.

  14. #14
    Senior Member surreal's Avatar
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    as junkyard said, much of this terminology is derived from marketing ploys. the idea is, to act like their are big differences between the various "disciplines" of mountain biking is to plant the seed of doubt in your mind. "Can i ride xc on my trailbike? what about trail-riding on my all-mountain rig? do i need to get permission to take my freeride bike on a downhill adventure?"

    That being said, there are many differences between various bikes, riders, and places to ride, not to mentio the style with which one rides these bikes at these places. Lebowski's explanation above is a solid one. Essentially, i think you should ride what works for you, where it works for you, while wearing what works for you. As challenges arise that you can't get around by learning new skills, you might want to get new gear/a new bike. Sometimes trails are too steep for me to fully enjoy on my bike with classic "xc" geometry, for example. And, if you tend to ride in cutoff jeans, a longer ride might convince you to get some shorts with a chamois down the line. But, really, there are no hard and fast rules, and no truly concise definitions. Yes, some riders are snobby and fashion-conscious, and they may deride you for riding the wrong bike at the wrong trail or wearing the wrong attire. Obviously, this behavior is pathetic, and those who cannot stop it need to go become roadies somewhere.

    FWIW, unless youre riding the street or skateparks, you're probably riding your mtb on a trail, so the term "trailriding", when used to differentiate one style of mtb-riding from others, never made much sense to me.

    -rob

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by efficiency View Post
    No difference between the two. It's just a way for the average mountain biker to dissociate from world of XC racing.
    Here's me thinking it was the other way around. .. thanks for the enlightening...

  16. #16
    bikes are sexy Lebowski's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by junkyard View Post
    Marketing ploy aimed at confusing stoner, burnout mountain bikers.
    sorry i couldnt read that my eyes are too blood shot

    wait what are we talking about again?
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  17. #17
    Old School Rad mtnbiker66's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kenhill3 View Post
    It seems silly to need to define any of this crap.

    mountain biking

    Word.......I think..........uhhhhhhh.....
    Like a circus monkey on a stolen Harley......

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lebowski View Post




    XC geometry is usually more upright and the bikes have shorter wheel bases
    My cross country geometry is well leaned over

  19. #19
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    if it twasn't all divided up like it is then mtb'ng wouldn't be so Specialized.

  20. #20
    Fourth Degree Legend junkyard's Avatar
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    this thread just got awesome.
    Quote Originally Posted by dminor View Post
    The caveat with a strap-on, of course, is you will have to get creative with a couple of lock cables and an anchor point

  21. #21
    use your best eye kenhill3's Avatar
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    No further comment.

    (Junkyard- sorry to disappoint.)
    "I tell you, We are here on earth to fart around, and don't let anybody tell you any different." - Kurt Vonnegut jr.

  22. #22
    "STAT" -_RebelRidin'_-'s Avatar
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    I always included trail riding with XC.
    then all mountain and freeride, in my book go together, and then you have Dirt Jump, and then Down hill.

    I find a lot of these terms are just made-up marketing devices to fool people.

    I, am still after that "Jack of all trades, Master of none" frame....
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  23. #23
    Senior Member yellowjeep's Avatar
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    I built my Shadow thinking Jack of all trades. It basically turned in to a AMLFRHTBSH that wouldn't seem right on DJs but would take damn near everything else.

    How you like them apples?
    When in doubt, style it out.

    How to post full size pictures

  24. #24
    Is that the MEEWN?! greenpeppers's Avatar
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    just get some good geometry on there and you can do whatever the hell you want. Maybe with a 29 inch wheel perhaps...

  25. #25
    ed
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    Quote Originally Posted by sunset1123 View Post
    AFAIK full suspension rigs were setup to take drops that were just too big to absorb with arms/legs, which wouldn't be in the category of XC riding.
    Wrong, sir. S-Works Epic was not designed to take drops. Dual suspension yields control in difficult terrain. Sure, you can still get through it on a HT or rigid bike, but DH Dan will blow your doors off on his Demo9 through a rock/root infested corner.

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