If my FTP grew about a single watt every time I thought this year, how thick a tire is without sense, I would be a rewrite today. I could record with GoPro on a stick the finals of the Dutch classics, driving next to the riders. Such would be ...
Somehow in the winter I wrote that fatbikes and 29 plus do not like me and I do not see much of their sense (link). Then we went in the snow-covered mountains to chase those bikes and with 29 plus it was a little better, but the fat still remained unreadable (link).
Here, after almost 4 months, I can say it directly: we found a place where 29 plus mounted in Trek Stache gives a clear advantage over any thinner wheel, and a full-size fatbike would do even better. Ladies and gentlemen, I am asking you:
Slowinski National Park
On the outskirts of the park located between Rowy (he he he) and Łeba you can read in the previous entry (o here). It consists mostly of sand, roots and German concrete slabs. It's all located in the forest and by the sea. From time to time, a wall will come out of nowhere. In the picture below, a view surrounding one of the many viewing platforms. In the distance you can see the mountain Rowokół, for which the entry is indeed very heavy, but it compensates for this huge observation tower, which can not be entered, because outside the strict season is closed to tourists. Rightly, they would still go in and consume the view. speaking I will not give, of course, I mean not allowed and that it is very, very difficult - especially in SPDs.
For the record, we go on Treku Stache 7 and Treku Remedy 8 borrowed from Absolute Bikes in Pruszków. I'm afraid that after these photos, they will be the last bikes we got from anyone ... but in total I say that every time ;-)
In addition to roads built of sand and roots, there are quite nice wooden footbridges. The period April-May is probably the last moments when it is possible to enter it on a bike without killing anyone. As soon as the weather becomes clear and the kids get free at school, things get much worse. Whoever was at the peak of the season at the Polish seaside knows what I am writing about.
Moving around the area, it is worth sticking to the designated trails. Apart from the fact that it is a National Park and rudely trample anything that is not created for it, every road, even the one seemingly the most important, ends unexpectedly. It's probably a trap for people like us. Hardly visible plates with an entry ban are a common sight. We quickly discover that it is pointless to go down the designated routes:
We also discover a few other things. For example, that Easter breakfast and festive gluttony do not go hand in hand with overcoming obstacles. Trees, after which you can usually walk, do not stand the pressure of a cyclist with a cheesecake in the stomach and break. Do you know what the temperature of water in Lake Dołgie Duże is in April? Piotrek can tell you - he checked my knees ... I'm afraid that nobody will ever lend me bicycles anymore.
From this place I would like to praise the bike very much, which is not very common to me, especially when it is MTB. The Sram GX drive in both bikes works great. I know that it seems obvious that the 5-digit bike drive works well, but it is not always the case. Maybe it's the fact that there is no gearbox in the front, maybe the technology just went so far forward since I was driving XT years ago ... Regardless of whether we're traveling on water, mud, roots or other unidentified surfaces, everything works. Even the metallic sound of the brake discs perfectly fitting into the forest silence does not bother so much. If only the Remedy did not come down to us with an seatpost ... (on this my-mace, or whatever it is called there, which until the time of going into the dunes, seems to us an unnecessary gadget).
Then came the time for the lighthouse in Czołpino. The lighthouse from a distance is like Rowokół. Such a local Everest. With the difference that the driveway has curves and you think that this is the end. This is different, at least from the south (north is normal). You ride yourself like a man and suddenly you can see an isthmus in the forest - to the horizon to the back and the horizon to the front (only a few dozen meters higher).
The last words that my running bike can hear is "Hey Maciek coming up behind me, guess who has KOM here!". These are words that, as you well know, increase the maximum power by 86%. Some 15 turns crank later the chain in my Staszek breaks.
And it even does well. It is somehow around 17, and instead of watching the finish of the Amstel Gold Race, I am fooling around on a non-serious bike. So I sit down in peace, I start a eurosport player, I make a fika selfika and watch. Piotrek returns to the car hoping that we have a skuwacz in it. I hear him shouting that I do not have to worry because he will take a shortcut - I know that thanks to this I will be able to see how Kwiato falls into the finish line. As predicted, 15 minutes later, I am again shouting that this was not a shortcut.
What we are good mechanics in can be seen in the picture below, especially after the splintering of gloves by the wheel.
At the top, it is not difficult to guess, there is a lighthouse surrounded by forest, so the view is not impressive. Going deeper into the forest you can see dunes, the sea, the beach, and generally it is very nice, but it can not be shown in the pictures.
Real fun begins then. The forest connects with the sea with the help of the beach, and it is surrounded by dunes (in contrast to the cliffs on which we were the day before). Here, for the first time, we notice two very important things.
First of all: this one Myk-Myk this is a great invention. I say it to me and my ... buttocks, let's say. The ability to leave the seat post at the exit is excellent, and its automatic return to the top - even better. Maybe personal coaches say that how to fall from highbut I do not think they wanted it. Eh, if there was such a patent in Staszek (only acting), what would be a perfect bike.
Second: the difference between the 3-inch wide and 29-inch tread Stache tires, and the 2.4-inch sideways and 27.5-inch up wheels in Trek Remedy is huge. In this case, in Stache's favor, of course. This is the first time we see it on a descent from the dunes.
This is confirmed when we go on the beach. Of course, you can go both, but this wider rubber is doing much better. I try not to get close to the sea, because you know - salt and these matters, but somehow it attracts me. The 3-inch drive is optimized, comfortable with occasional digging. But maybe I just passed through some sand locks that I did not notice ... or drove a small child. Remedy drives slower, feel clearly falling. Lowering the pressure to the obscenely low (because it is a tubeless) saves a bit of a situation, but still more energy goes to the drive than to admire the views.
On Remedy, in total, a fairy tale, until you sit on Stache. Then it is known that something is not playing. Suspension, which is like a black couch in certain movies from the Internet (I have heard from a friend - if you do not catch a joke, do not check), does not help in this fight. Probably somehow it sets, somewhere it blocks, but who cares ... It's enough that every kilometer you have to push the seat post with a button.
We overcome the first dunes quite easily. It is confirmed that the cyclist is riding, not the bike. Piotrek on Remedy goes to places that have a problem on my thicker wheel, but they should not. Of course, the pictures flatten everything out and we look like beaps on them.
And I will say it honestly: every 10 meters defeated in this way, it's like 10 floors covered with a trot with a pass on the shoulder. I can not imagine that an ordinary mortal would like it. Here we come (literally, in the sense: shoes) to interesting conclusions. We have a moment to think about it because we are moving quite slowly. Fatbike would have done quite well here, but ...
Over time, we get a little practice, we take the leftovers of the air and start to do it somehow (again word wit). Bicycles are going, one is better, the other is worse, but they are going. Fatem would be even better. Only the fact that they are riding does not mean that it is simple. Riding in the sand sands requires a really large pair in the leg. Your term is low, full of focus, and you spin somewhere between the lack of grip and the speed that allows you to stay in the vertical. Some 25% of the wheel's rotation goes into the burner because it is spinning in place. If we add to the fact that Remedy still has 50% of the work of suspension (subjective numbers), we have the answer why it is difficult. It would also be for the facie. So I do not know who the bike is for, because we are not really a sufficient target group. Probably the beach would be cool, but 29 plus was enough. If someone told me to find the perfect application of a fata, it is here.
After a dozen or so minutes we manage to go straight, ride down without emergency unhitching and start ramps. We did not manage to get any of the hills fully. I feel tired for it. Other than that known to me from asphalt. They hurt some new muscles that I did not know existed.
Driving with these machines forces you to abandon your habits. In CX, bumping into the sand, I am already looking through the eyes of a place where I can land and not pierce my spleen with a stick. Here, it's enough to self-advise that you can go after everything ... and you can do it. And even if the statement that it is possible becomes strained, it still remains aware that it is feasible.
As part of the test, we check what happens after going down 2 meters from the planned route. It's illegal, so of course we're just back on the beat up fragment (who stumbles, no one is there, and the wind blows as always).
We tried unnecessarily - it goes like it should go. Almost like on the beach. It's good that we did it at the end of the trip, because it would be hard to refrain from cheating in such a way all the time.
To tell the truth, we have not played so well in a long time. It's a bit strange because I feel reluctant to Stache when I think about pedaling on him, as well as the desire to return with this bike to such places.
Maybe those who say that MTB is great when you have a great route are right. Such Trek Remedy is probably great for fast driving downhill on technically more difficult routes. Fat is great on the dunes. Stache is perfect when there are a few more roots and sand. Others are cool in yet other places. Unfortunately, I do not have the space, the time or the ability to convince myself about it. In the field I will keep bouncing my wrists on the cross and wearing it on my back in more difficult places.
On such days as this one, taking advantage of the fact that during the entire ride maybe three people pass us, I wear my outfit "Bike - Magazine number 1 in Europe" - besides, it suits my woolen hat. I only have to get some bermudas, which I will put on my long pants and a helmet with a visor. Ah, and the backpack, of course!
A trip to the asphalt reminds us that we are deep in the depths of the road. It's a completely different approach to driving. It is more about the fact of moving than the fact of having fun while driving. We came up badly to all this. Loops for MTB are not determined as for crossings, you take a map, you sketch 100km, of which 140km in an unknown way and count the next points. Here, planning a 3-hour drive, you can in peace settle for 40km, spinning around the parked car. Maybe one day we'll understand it - so far, I do not plan to come back to MTB ;-)