Bike of the Week 13: 2011 Cannondale Trail SL 29’er 2

You’ve probably heard about the whole 29’er thing. The basic idea is this: mountain bikes have had 26 inch wheels almost since they were invented decades ago. A small niche started growing over the past few years based on the premise that bigger is better. Larger diameter wheels carry momentum and roll over small bumps better than smaller wheels do. Think monster truck. There is a bigger patch of tire touching the ground and you can run less air pressure without trouble. Big wheeled bikes get a longer wheelbase for more stability. 29’ers, as they have come to be known, are here to stay. They make sense for most riders looking into getting hardtails. Please don’t call regular bikes “twenty-sixers”. That’s just silly.

The 2011 Cannondale Trail SL 29’er 2 is going to be one of our most popular mountain bikes this year. The Trail SL frame is equipped with SAVE technology to smooths out rough trails and a 1.5″ head tube provides point-and-shoot steering. Priced well at $1000, this is a great first mountain bike for new riders or a good option to get into a 29’er without spending an absolute fortune. You get a great parts kit featuring Shimano Deore shifting, Shimano’s great new M445 hydraulic disc brakes, an RST Air shock w/ lockout, Kenda Small Block Tires… you get the idea. Great value and performance. It is available in the ever popular BBQ matte black along with Cannondale’s race red. We have a few of these in stock right now, so come take a look.

In the past, there has been a sort of “29’er tax” where an identically spec’d 29’er would cost more than a 26″ version. That gap has closed on most models for most brands. Now you just have another option when looking for a new bike.

Take a look at this awesome YouTube clip I found. A spoof on the American show Myth Busters, this Australian gem comes up with inconclusive evidence of dominance one way or the other. One thing (of many) they don’t mention in the video is the simple logic that 29’ers are great for big riders too. It just makes sense proportionally.

See the full spec sheet and compare it to the 29’er SL 3 and 29’er SL 4.

Like this bike but not sold on the 29’er thing? The Cannondale Trail SL 2 comes in a 26″ version at the same price.

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