Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Mountain Biking
Reload this Page >

Explain the different types of Mountain Biking (XC, All mountain, Freeride, etc)

Notices
Mountain Biking Mountain biking is one of the fastest growing sports in the world. Check out this forum to discuss the latest tips, tricks, gear and equipment in the world of mountain biking.

Explain the different types of Mountain Biking (XC, All mountain, Freeride, etc)

Old 05-10-05, 10:36 AM
  #1  
robo
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
robo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Minneapolis, MN, USA
Posts: 1,142

Bikes: 1990 Burley Bossa Nova, 1992 Paramount PDG-70, 1993 Specialized Stumpjumper, 2005 Jamis Dakar XC Pro, 2007 Rivendell Bleriot

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 27 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 2 Posts
Explain the different types of Mountain Biking (XC, All mountain, Freeride, etc)

I feel like a newbie again. Back when I was into mountain biking, about 8 years ago, there were two types of 'mountain biking'. Cross country, and downhill. Downhill was a specialty, where you took a ski lift or truck to the top of a mountain, and went bombing down, usually on a dual suspension bike. Everything else was 'cross country'. You rode a hardtail for that, usually with front suspension but if you were a purist, a rigid steel or Syncros straight fork.

I and my friends used to ride 'cross country'. We lived in Vancouver, B.C., and would ride the steep but relatively smooth and fast trails in the UBC endowment lands, and the steep and incredibly rough trails on the North Shore (big drops (3-4'), roots, fallen logs, but nothing like the photos i've seen now with wooden trestles and 10' drops and people flying through the air on what appear to be motocross bikes without the engines!). All this we knew as 'cross country' riding.

Now, looking at bikes and forks, i'm lost. What is the difference between cross country and 'all mountain'? Is freeride a new name for downhill?


Thanks!
robo is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 10:51 AM
  #2  
Maelstrom 
Wood Licker
 
Maelstrom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Whistler,BC
Posts: 16,966

Bikes: Trek Fuel EX 8 27.5 +, 2002 Transition Dirtbag, Kona Roast 2002

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 23 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Welcome to the forums. I will leave this as easy as possible...I am also going to explain it as it pertains to the shore and the shops out here.

TODAY

All mountain - your old xc seems to need mid travel bike. All mountain actually means 6" front and rear. This is perfect for the shore/ubc/woodlot as it is pedaling up and then tonnes of work down. Lots of people still use hardtails for this type of riding.

Xc - ligher, more fragile, steeper head angle. VEry short to no travel in the back and 4in max in the front Almost always air and always with Lockout of some kind. These bikes will be similar to what you would have been used to, but you might have used burlier forks.

DH - still the same more or less. Big ass bikes, tonnes of travel to work with. VEry slack HA. These things SUCK to pedal uphill but smoke everything down.

Freeride - varries. Basically freeride is a combination of everything imo. Pedal up fly down, burly parts. Big air is the name of the game as well. Hucking, jumping, tweeking everything.

You should buy a movie calls the Emergence. Really shows how west coast riding has progressed here and the sport in general. In reality I don't use many terms to describe my riding, simple reason, everyone I know would laugh at me. Xc is all encompassing, everyone rides everything on whatever bike they have. I just use the terms to help describe the bikes, not the riding. I know guys that can ride the steepest more technical trail in whistler on a xc bike, but people that come here with 10" travel bikes cry and walk down it.

Favorite quote from the emergence "when we rode we pointed the nose side down, then one day we go for a ride and these young-uns are all going rear wheel down first, while I still go nose first, wheel first sure was faster", something like that anyways.
Maelstrom is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 10:59 AM
  #3  
robo
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
robo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Minneapolis, MN, USA
Posts: 1,142

Bikes: 1990 Burley Bossa Nova, 1992 Paramount PDG-70, 1993 Specialized Stumpjumper, 2005 Jamis Dakar XC Pro, 2007 Rivendell Bleriot

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 27 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 2 Posts
Thanks. Bikes billed as 'XC' bikes definitely look like what i was used to as a mountain bike.
robo is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 11:28 AM
  #4  
Jason222
Banned.
 
Jason222's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Moncton NB
Posts: 2,123

Bikes: Trek Jack...trials bike soon.

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
There's Dirt Jumping as well. The name says all. Trials biking is now another part of MTBing, and as is urban assault. But, these can, in a way, be taken in along with Freeride.
Jason222 is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 11:34 AM
  #5  
Maelstrom 
Wood Licker
 
Maelstrom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Whistler,BC
Posts: 16,966

Bikes: Trek Fuel EX 8 27.5 +, 2002 Transition Dirtbag, Kona Roast 2002

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 23 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
I had assumed he was a trail rider, which is why I left it to the trail bikes. No need to mention bikes he doesn't even care about ...

Dj bikes, urban bikes and fr ht's are virtually interchangeable. The differences are barely noticable except to people REALLY picky about the geometry of their bikes
Maelstrom is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 11:36 AM
  #6  
jeff williams
I couldn't car less.
 
jeff williams's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 4,397

Bikes: Ritchey P-series prototype, Diamondback, Nishiki Triathelon Pro.

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by robo

Now, looking at bikes and forks, i'm lost. What is the difference between cross country and 'all mountain'? Is freeride a new name for downhill?


Thanks!
The difference now may be that most all frame are have radically inclined toptubes, even bikes that are 'decaled' xc, where as older mtb frames that were xc had a less inclined top tube.
To ride XC the seat is up and the bike is ridden as a crank driven bike, the focus is in the correct knee\spindle action.
With a steep incline frame this gets sketchy as soo much seatpost is above the collar, and the seat may not even slide foreward enough to get the knee\spindle action.
Most of the all mountain is ridden seat down, and really you are not on the saddle that much if doing trail runs.

And as Mael pointed out the headtube angle will be less steep on xc using a short travel fork.
The steep headtube angle on the all mountain\dh keeps the wheelbase short with the x-tra long travel fork.

I kinda think of it this way -xc is ridden seat and bars level or seat higher and in an areo\power into the crank position of saddle.
All mountain is saddle level or bars higher, the body position is upright and the rider pedals off the seat often.
From what I've seen, the longer the travel fork, lower the seat becomes and the ability and really need for correct knee\spindle distance decreases as the bikes are intended for downhill and drops.

I'm probably not the best person to write this up. Cool that you are getting back into riding.

Disc brakes will rock your world. And shocks are really well done now, dampening adjustments\pre-load and lockouts for climbing are really nice improvements.
I didn't care for early suspension forks too much.
jeff williams is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 11:50 AM
  #7  
Akak
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 239
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I posted these tongue-in-cheek definitions a while ago but can't seem to find the post using the search function. Here's how I define the different disciplines of mountain biking:

XC: Riding a bike on trails that include climbing, descending, and negotiating obstacles.
Downhill: A race to see who can coast the fastest on a motorcycle that's had the engine removed and then riding a ski lift back up.
Freeride: Downhill without a time clock.
Urban Assault: Trying to justify spending all that money on a mountain bike for riding on the pavement.
Dirt Jumping: Falling off cliffs while holding onto a bicycle.

Last edited by Akak; 05-10-05 at 12:00 PM.
Akak is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 11:54 AM
  #8  
robo
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
robo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Minneapolis, MN, USA
Posts: 1,142

Bikes: 1990 Burley Bossa Nova, 1992 Paramount PDG-70, 1993 Specialized Stumpjumper, 2005 Jamis Dakar XC Pro, 2007 Rivendell Bleriot

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 27 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 4 Times in 2 Posts
Cool. I've been thinking about getting a new bike in a little while, depending on how my 1993 steel StumpJumper with Softride stem holds up.

I guess i'll be looking at either XC or All Mountain bikes. I do want a bike that i can ride _to_ the trail.. in other words, not some 30 lb monster that is horribly inefficient to pedal.
robo is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 11:56 AM
  #9  
jeff williams
I couldn't car less.
 
jeff williams's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 4,397

Bikes: Ritchey P-series prototype, Diamondback, Nishiki Triathelon Pro.

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Akak

Downhill: A race to see who can coast the fastest on a motorcycle that's had the engine removed and then riding a ski lift back up.
That's funny.
jeff williams is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 12:10 PM
  #10  
Maelstrom 
Wood Licker
 
Maelstrom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Whistler,BC
Posts: 16,966

Bikes: Trek Fuel EX 8 27.5 +, 2002 Transition Dirtbag, Kona Roast 2002

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 23 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by robo
Cool. I've been thinking about getting a new bike in a little while, depending on how my 1993 steel StumpJumper with Softride stem holds up.

I guess i'll be looking at either XC or All Mountain bikes. I do want a bike that i can ride _to_ the trail.. in other words, not some 30 lb monster that is horribly inefficient to pedal.
Then you should look at xc duallies. Most of the all mountain range weight in the 30 to 35 pound range as they are meant to be quite a bit stronger than a 'xc' bike
Maelstrom is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 12:13 PM
  #11  
Maelstrom 
Wood Licker
 
Maelstrom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Whistler,BC
Posts: 16,966

Bikes: Trek Fuel EX 8 27.5 +, 2002 Transition Dirtbag, Kona Roast 2002

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 23 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by Akak
I posted these tongue-in-cheek definitions a while ago but can't seem to find the post using the search function. Here's how I define the different disciplines of mountain biking:

XC: Riding a bike on trails that include climbing, descending, and negotiating obstacles.
Downhill: A race to see who can coast the fastest on a motorcycle that's had the engine removed and then riding a ski lift back up.
Freeride: Downhill without a time clock.
Urban Assault: Trying to justify spending all that money on a mountain bike for riding on the pavement.
Dirt Jumping: Falling off cliffs while holding onto a bicycle.
I remember that. I almost responded pretty pissed off until I realized it was a joke. Good stuff...although to make it all jest instead of just again the adrenaline junkies

xc: guys who ride skinny little fragile bikes and really expect to be able to do everything downhillers/freeriders do when going down.
xc race: bikes built with the strength of a road bike on trails that closer resemble the road than anything that can be called a trail.
All mountain: overweight xc guys who ride bikes with too much travel and too much weight to really be useful
Maelstrom is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 12:17 PM
  #12  
jeff williams
I couldn't car less.
 
jeff williams's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 4,397

Bikes: Ritchey P-series prototype, Diamondback, Nishiki Triathelon Pro.

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Lowcel did up an Ellsworth Truth? @ 24.something lbs, but I think it was pretty pricey.
Must be sooo nice.

https://www.bikeforums.net/search.php?searchid=1028519 Here it is..ahhhhhhh.
jeff williams is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 03:11 PM
  #13  
mtnbiker66
Old School Rad
 
mtnbiker66's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: The old Mountains
Posts: 8,206

Bikes: Blur LT

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Maelstrom
I remember that. I almost responded pretty pissed off until I realized it was a joke. Good stuff...although to make it all jest instead of just again the adrenaline junkies

xc: guys who ride skinny little fragile bikes and really expect to be able to do everything downhillers/freeriders do when going down.
xc race: bikes built with the strength of a road bike on trails that closer resemble the road than anything that can be called a trail.
All mountain: overweight xc guys who ride bikes with too much travel and too much weight to really be useful
Now I know I'm all mtn. That takes a big load off my shoulders,no more sitting up at night thinking about it.
__________________
Like a circus monkey on a stolen Harley......
mtnbiker66 is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 04:09 PM
  #14  
Akak
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 239
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Maelstrom
xc race: bikes built with the strength of a road bike on trails that closer resemble the road than anything that can be called a trail.
I like this one!
Akak is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 04:12 PM
  #15  
Maelstrom 
Wood Licker
 
Maelstrom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Whistler,BC
Posts: 16,966

Bikes: Trek Fuel EX 8 27.5 +, 2002 Transition Dirtbag, Kona Roast 2002

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 23 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
hahaha
Maelstrom is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 04:31 PM
  #16  
SpiderMike
eert a ekil yzarc
 
SpiderMike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Pasadena TX
Posts: 2,560

Bikes: many bikes

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Y'all forgot the underground cult of the Mountain bike universe.... Single Speed.
Considered a fad by some, but mountain biking was considered a fad. Reasons vary among the church of Single Speed from simplicity to training purposes....
SpiderMike is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 05:04 PM
  #17  
hebrew_rider
a badass heeb on wheels
 
hebrew_rider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Santa Cruz, California
Posts: 219

Bikes: Santa Cruz Chameleon

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Also, Trials, is considered by many to be part of Mounatin Biking. It invloves using as much transformation of potrntial to kenetic energy as possible by hopping on one wheel, balancing on crazily skinny beams, and defying the laws of gravity. It normally follows this formula: K=PC^2 (kinetic energy equals potential energy times crazyieness squared)
hebrew_rider is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 05:16 PM
  #18  
cryptid01
one less horse
 
cryptid01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: East Jesus NY
Posts: 5,600

Bikes: are better than yours

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by Maelstrom
All mountain: overweight xc guys who ride bikes with too much travel and too much weight to really be useful



don't forget the disciplines of mountaincross and slalom.
cryptid01 is offline  
Old 05-10-05, 06:46 PM
  #19  
Maelstrom 
Wood Licker
 
Maelstrom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Whistler,BC
Posts: 16,966

Bikes: Trek Fuel EX 8 27.5 +, 2002 Transition Dirtbag, Kona Roast 2002

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 23 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Mountain cross - boarders that got lost in the summer and found the course cut in. Either that of slalom riders who wanted to be able to puch their opponents.
Slalom - Passive agressive bikercross riders
Maelstrom is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.