It may not be love at first ride, but it will end in LOVE
By Trek Mountain Girl
By Trek Mountain Girl
I LOVE MY SUPERFLY! But it was not love at first ride for me. Since the Superfly doesn't come in a model designed specifically to fit women, I had to make some modifications. I swapped saddles for a women's specific saddle, and swapped the Bontrager Big Sweep handlebars for one more specific to my size and last but not least the Bontrager 29-2 tires that came on the bike were not suited for the Midwestern trails of mud, roots and large river rock, so I swapped them for knobbier tires and made them tubeless so I could ride with lower air pressure.
My favorite bike shop made all the changes possible and had me back on the trails in no time. If you ever make it to Edwardsville, Illinois, you should stop at The Cyclery and Fitness, I'm sure you would like it as much as I do.
I had to get over a learning curve going from Shimano to SRAM shifters, but now that I have gotten used to the push-push activation, I love it. The shifting is smooth, solid, and predictable. On my previous bike I had to 'feel my way' into the gear changes. With the new SRAM, I just click and it's there. This leaves me focusing on the trail and the competition instead of shifting.
My hands are pretty small so I really appreciated the adjustability of the Avid Elixir R hydraulic brakes to let me set up the reach from the handle to the bar so it was customized to my finger length and angle.
I got the Fox F29 fork and Fox Float RP-2 rear shock dialed in on air pressure so I float over trail obstacles without ever losing the feel of the trail. I love the 2-position pro-pedal option on the rear. I can let it soak up big bumps when bombing down hills or flick it to pro-pedal for more stability on climbs.
The frame is stiff in all the right places. I never feel flex when leaning into a tight turn or when really applying power to the pedals. I think the stiffness comes from the giant E2 head tube with the large diameter bottom bearing.
The 110/100 mm travel in the suspension is just right for the cross country racing and the adventure racing that I do. Any more length would just add extra weight, and any less would impact my comfort level (which gets to be very important in 24 hr races).
I am also happy that for the 2011 year Trek added some carbon armor on the down tube in front of the crank, and along the chain stay. Both of these areas are so easy to damage on the rocky trails in eastern, MO. I know mine have taken some good hits and there is no damage.
I know you are waiting to find out about my final thoughts on the Superfly. This is why I now LOVE my SUPERFLY in less technical terms.
1. It rolled over every rock and root, like they weren't even there.
2. I flew up and down the hills like I was riding the flat, it just rolled smooth as butter.
3. I never once felt the saddle, it was like I was sitting on air, thanks Andy!
4. The handle bars felt like they were made specifically for my build.
5. The tires grabbed the dirt and just took me where I wanted to go.
6. After banging the down tube on more rocks than I want to think about there was no damage to the bike.
7. With the float dialed in just right, my lower back was not sore at all.
8. My hands felt great because I wasn't reaching for the shifters and the brakes, they were right were they needed to be.
9. It was the bike that everyone told me it would be. I was almost too happy for words by the end of the ride.
So it might not have been Love at first ride, but it is definitely LOVE now.