I fucking love hardtails.
Plain and simple.Mine is currently layed beside me with a flat rear tire,goose shit stuck to the front one,and hasn't seen a cleaning since the day it got built.The winter months are upon us and during these loomy dark times this bike sees the most action out of any of my fleet.My DH bike is in pieces awaiting it's new centerpiece and my trusty pedaly buddy,green machine,is a fair weather only steed.So when the rain hits hard but a sunny day off arives I always pick up my stiff friend.
I was once told by a ex-world cupper turned coach that a hardtail is one of the most versitile bikes you can ever own.And he was 100% correct.I beat the living hell out of my hardtail come "the offseason".Countless hours spent exploring local XC spots looking for abandoned horse trails.Tons of trips to the bikepark for some corner shreding goodness.Not to mention general razzing of short,mellow,backyard DH stuff.I can't get enough of the feeling I get when give my hardtail the beans.That placebo effect of going a million miles an hour on sections of trail that feel fully in control on a squishy bike.It constantly gives me an ear to ear shit eating grin.
I'm a firm believer that everyone who wants to start riding mountain bikes should start off on a hardtail.Now,let me preface that sentance by saying I didn't start this way...in fact I got my first hardtail about 3 years ago.At any rate,they'll teach you the basic fundamentals of riding a dirt oriantated bicycle.They'll tell you if you decided to take the wrong line,and that right there will make quick work of making you a smoother rider,which in turn will make you a faster rider.Also back to that mutiple use thing,go on a group XC ride one day,hit some jumps another day,and hammer a pump track the next.All of this while,more then likely,never making a peep and always working great.
If you've got a hardtail do yourself a favor,leave the full susser at home every now and again and go beat yourself up on it.You won't regret it,I promise.Personally i'm looking forward to these upcomming months spent mainly with Mr.hardtail.Alls I gotta do is fix a flat and we're off to gallop through some rocks,throw some roost and ultimately spend a lovely 4 days bashing gates on a hillside on Lagua Seca raceway in April.