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Old 03-08-10, 04:36 AM   #1
CountryHoppers
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Surly Long Haul Trucker vs. Salsa Fargo

I am scratching my head on figuring out which of these two bikes to get. I think economically and convience would favor the Long Haul Trucker; however, I really like the salsa fargo. What are your opinions?

Best,

Erek

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Old 03-08-10, 06:50 AM   #2
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One isn't better than the other as far as quality goes. Which ever fits you best and suits your style of riding is the real question and only you can answer that. The LHT is better suited to ride on the road (though some people do single track with it) and the Fargo is more suited for offroad (though some road ride with it). The LHT has some details like spare spoke holder, pump pin and chain hanger that the Fargo doesn't have. The things I personaly don't like about the Fargo are the straight unicrown fork and disc's. I can't say I'd never have a bike with disc's but I prefer a more traditional looking touring bike but thats just me and I aint you. Ride both and see which one feels the best.
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Old 03-08-10, 07:20 AM   #3
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For me, I went with a LHT, primarily for two reasons. I vacillated on the disc brake question before deciding "regular" was the way to go. And, more importantly, I decided to spend the difference in money on upgrades/tweaks to the LHT that reflected what I wanted (butterfly bars, Marathon Extreme tires, etc.). I still saved a little money as well, but in doing part/much of the GDMBR this Summer I'm sure I will reflect upon the "should I have gotten the Fargo?" question a few 100,000,000 times.
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Old 03-08-10, 08:15 AM   #4
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Do you ever plan on touring off-road? Then the Fargo is your bike. The LHT is more suited for on-road, even if they're gravel. Check out the Vaya if you like disc brakes.
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Old 03-08-10, 08:48 AM   #5
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Well, I own both. The LHT is 2 years old, the Fargo I just purchased last Sept. Basically they compliment each other, which is obvious. My LHT is a 54, with 26 in wheels. you could invest in some good mtn bike tires and it would get you thru most dirt roads and some single track. The Fargo is just the opposite, much better off road with those bike 29er (700c) wheels and fat tires. But I can put on road tires to speed it up for road touring.

I use the LHT for road touring and commuting to work. Its much quicker on the roads, but a big part of that is the big tires on the Fargo. When I'm off exploring dirt roads and some single track, the Fargo just eats that up and is very comfortable in that situation.

Brakes, well I love those disk brakes on the Fargo. The cantilevers are OK on the LHT, but I'd really like to have a LHT with disk brakes. Never had a problem with a bike with disks.

Brian
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Old 03-08-10, 09:26 AM   #6
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Obviously depends on where you plan on riding. The Fargo is a good compromise for running on pavement or trails, depending on tire selection. The LHT is designed for running superbly on hard, smooth surfaces, but would handle light trails ok with 35mm tires.

I do like the sloping top tube on the Fargo. Easier to mount and dismount.

As for the GDMBR, this journalist recommends a full suspension MTB. But I met a slightly built lady doing it on a non suspended hybrid. The Fargo would handle it nicely, depending on skill and determination. The LHT, hmmm...

http://trek4fun.com/great_divide_tra...il_preface.htm
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Old 03-08-10, 09:41 AM   #7
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As for my self I have the Surly LHT 52cm and love it.Would not sell it for anything.I done a lot of up grades to it to make it feel better for me.Took of the stock crank set and put on a set with 22,32,44t.Had to change a few other parts as well.But its my bicycle lol.Good luck on your bike looking.
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Old 03-08-10, 10:09 AM   #8
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Obviously depends on where you plan on riding. The Fargo is a good compromise for running on pavement or trails, depending on tire selection. The LHT is designed for running superbly on hard, smooth surfaces, but would handle light trails ok with 35mm tires.

I do like the sloping top tube on the Fargo. Easier to mount and dismount.

As for the GDMBR, this journalist recommends a full suspension MTB. But I met a slightly built lady doing it on a non suspended hybrid. The Fargo would handle it nicely, depending on skill and determination. The LHT, hmmm...

http://trek4fun.com/great_divide_tra...il_preface.htm
Most of the GDR [more than 90%] is paved/dirt road/gravel road. There isn't that much that would qualify as mountain biking. LHTs have successfully toured the GDR as have Trek 520s and other classic touring bikes. I rode a rigid bike on the CDN GDR and our daily mileage/speed was no different to the folks on FS and hardtail MTBs.

My own feeling is the success/happiness you'll experience on the GDR is mostly about bike fit/tires and then carrying as little load as you can be comfortable with.

Both a Surly LHT or a Salsa Fargo would do just fine with the widest tires you could fit into each frame.
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Old 03-08-10, 10:35 AM   #9
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... other classic touring bikes. I rode a rigid bike on the CDN GDR and our daily mileage/speed was no different to the folks on FS and hardtail MTBs...
to be fair: weren't you two riding pugsleys? Im not sure that your 4 inch tires are in the same league as a 35c 700c tire on a 520/lht .

I agree with you that either bike (fargo or Lht) could ride the GDMBR. If I were doing it, however, I would put on an 80mm sus. fork... does the fargo have suspension corrected geometry? that might push the decision over the edge for me, as I could put in a suspension fork for looooong dirt tours, and use the rigid fork for road riding.
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Old 03-08-10, 10:48 AM   #10
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Salsa Fargo hands down. It can do everything the LHT can do, plus more.



And this guy has Jandd racks/panniers to boot.
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Old 03-08-10, 11:50 AM   #11
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Tire clearance was the big thing for me and my (54cm 26" wheel) LHT. The Fargo certainly has that. I like the discs on my rigid mtn bike but they frustrate me to a certain extent and I wouldn't want to ride them as much as I ride my LHT. On the other hand, if I did, maybe I'd finally work out the last kinks I have in my relationship with them (that damn squeal never goes away).
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Old 03-08-10, 12:25 PM   #12
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to be fair: weren't you two riding pugsleys? Im not sure that your 4 inch tires are in the same league as a 35c 700c tire on a 520/lht .

I agree with you that either bike (fargo or Lht) could ride the GDMBR. If I were doing it, however, I would put on an 80mm sus. fork... does the fargo have suspension corrected geometry? that might push the decision over the edge for me, as I could put in a suspension fork for looooong dirt tours, and use the rigid fork for road riding.


Keeping mind that you gotta roll those 4" tires uphill to get their benefit going down....

I'd run a LHT with 2.1" tires on the GDR not 1.4" [35mm]. That would give you a good compromise of speed on smoother sections and climbs while stil being cushy for the ride downhill at speed.
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Old 03-08-10, 06:17 PM   #13
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Re: "the GD thing", I'm using the 2.0 Marathon Extreme's and a LHT with those looks completely capable of handling the Route. Getting back to the overall question, I think we can all agree they are both good/great bikes. Period. In fact, we should probably all stop posting to this thread and go riding on either immediately.
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Old 03-15-10, 08:20 PM   #14
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Hey guys thanks for the replies. This thread was very helpful!!!
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