Fancy some adventure touring? Then Salsa have the bike for you, the Fargo – which incidentally gets Day one's WTF! Award. What we have here is a rigid 29er mountain bike with drop bars, Avid discs, yes, drop bars, five (count 'em) bottle cages – extreme touring being thirsty work apparently - Shimano XT Deore drivetrain, Shimano bar end shifters, and Salsa's own 29in wheels sporting WTB Vulpine 2.1in tyres. Sounds crazy, but it might just work. After all some of the early MTB legends raced bikes with drop bars, and although the absence of suspension might raise a few eyebrows it wasn't that long ago the downhillers were racing on rigid steel steeds. And those big volume tyres are going to soak up a fair bit of trail shock. Steve Johnson from Salsa confirmed that it had been extensively tested in some very wild country over some very technical terrain and we could see that it might well have something to offer long haul expedition riders going to places where the roads might be bad to non-existent. It is steel so it's repairable, although spare tyres might present a problem. You can see one in the flesh at the London Cycle show in October. In the US the Fargo sells for $1600, UK prices have yet to be confirmed.
Tony has been editing cycling magazines and websites since 1997 starting out as production editor and then deputy editor of Total Bike, acting editor of Total Mountain Bike and then seven years as editor of Cycling Plus. He launched his first cycling website - the Cycling Plus Forum at the turn of the century. In 2006 he left C+ to head up the launch team for Bike Radar which he edited until 2008, when he co-launched the multi-award winning road.cc - which he continues to edit today. His favourite ride is his ‘commute’ - which he does most days inc weekends and he’s been cycle-commuting since 1994. His favourite bikes are titanium and have disc brakes.