This is our perspective on the most controversial question: 'If you can only have one bike.' Of course, this is based on our riding style and location, which dictate the type of terrain we encounter most of the time. Just to provide some context: we all live in the city, often go on coffee rides on weekends, and occasionally hit the trails when our schedules permit. These are our personal rigs, and what follows is our personal opinion based on our experiences. We hope to share some helpful insights to assist you in choosing your own do-it-all rig.
The Surly Midnight Special is on the roadie side of the gravel spectrum. What's not to love about a road bike that can accommodate mountain bike tires? With its aggressive road geometry adapted from the Surly Pacer, it's both fun and thrilling on the trails. Thanks to the 44-44 headtube, it can easily accommodate steel, carbon, and gravel suspension forks. Don’t sleep on this rig, this can definitely keep up with weekender riders’ peleton and gravel races (Racing Sux’s rig during the UCI Gravel in Bongabon where he finished 6th in his age cat and 25th overall).
Reference: Racing Sux in UCI Bongabon
The Surly Straggler. Nope, it's not redundant with the MS. Its classic lug frame braces and horizontal drop-out, which allow for a clean single-speed setup, set it apart. We love this bike because it modernized only the necessary areas; ample tire clearance and disc brakes. Like other Surlys, it has generous amount of eyelets, slapping racks on this classic rig will only make it look even better.
Coming from a MTB background, the Surly Grappler is the natural transition to gravel riding. I hope it was available sooner. During our recent 'Gravel in the Jungle' ride at La Mesa, the Grappler had the most fun; Drop bar with dropper post, MTB tires, and aggressive rake. There are posts in the GG group where riders fitted 700x43 tires, so it's safe to say that it still has a place within the Gravel Spectrum, leaning towards the MTB side.
What’s your take on the one bike that can do it all? Comment on our Instagram and Facebook posts. We are interested on your thoughts.