Test riding the Salsa Bucksaw 2 March 23 2015

Early Saturday I took out a bike quite unlike any other I've ever ridden - the Salsa Bucksaw 2. Gloriously decked out in a colour aptly named "Gold Rush", the Busksaw is a full suspension fat-bike with 100mm of sweet travel and monster 3.8" Surly Nate feet.

 

From the get-go I was pleasantly surprised at how easy the Bucksaw was to pedal, even climbing up the tarseal to get to the trailhead of my usual loop it didn't feel much different to my usual 29er, perhaps with a bit more drag, but sitting about the same height off the ground (26" tyres!!!).

 

I thought it would be a great idea to test the bike against a benchmark ride & see how it stacked up - and I'm happy to report it compared quite well in fact. Initially I was aware of the heft of the beast, but once I got rolling on Mt Vic's dusty trails this became quickly forgotten. For sure the tyres do a great imitation of a 4WD on the road, but this became white noise in the background as climbing & carving engendered a euphoric state of being. Nothing quite like riding with a huge grin on your dial, clocking all the querulous stares of fellow riders & walkers - it was certainly entertaining!

 

Surprisingly nimble on uphill singletrack and a devilish imp on rooty, rocky, off-camber downhill sections, nothing seemed un-rideable or too much of a challenge. The fat tyres rolled over any obstacle with ease, even at slower speeds & my purposely-taken "bad lines" became the correct routes pretty quickly. The combination of the suspension & tyre volume smoothed out so much trail clutter, I had to constantly scan the trail ahead for bigger/badder obstacles to test the bike against.

 

I can see why fat bikes are so popular, allowing the rider to extend their comfort zone, terrain & range, and quite possibly, the frequency of their rides. Before I knew it I was at the end of my ride (just another 5 minutes please mum!), I'd barely broken into a sweat & was genuinely bummed at having to head back to work to hand my steed over to the next test rider! It's pretty hard to get riding a bike such as this out of your mind immediately & I had several quiet moments reflecting back over my ride during the rest of the day - priceless! 

 

Checking though my Strava feed ("if it ain't on Strava, it ain't real baby!") my times for the same loop were so close to my previous ones it was crazy - it certainly reinforces the belief that fat bikes aren't just for adventure rides or riding on sand/snow - they're for everyday riding on everyday tracks too, just maybe a bit more fun!

 

Resplendent in the Autumn morning Mt Victoria sunshine
Check out the bottom bracket and tyre widths - phat baby, phat!