Gravel Bikes in 3 Easy Steps
Gravel riding has become quite in vogue the past few seasons, but many of us have been at it for years. If you haven’t yet discovered the serenity of exploring the path less traveled on traffic-free back roads, you really owe it to yourself to give it a shot!
Step One: Ride Gravel
One of the nice things about gravel is that nearly any bike will do. Fat bikes, conventional mountain bikes, commuters, cross and even road bikes can all be taken to the unpaved roads. While the 23 mm slicks on your roadie might not be ideal, many frames have clearance for 25 or even 28 mm treads, which will significantly improve stability and traction while reducing the likelihood of punctures.
Step Two: Gravel Bike
Already hooked on gravel but not loving the rock chips and grime that quickly accumulate on your carbon road bike? Perhaps it’s time to consider a dedicated gravel bike.
As gravel riding and cyclocross continue to flourish, manufacturers are responding with an ever-growing number of suitable rides. Huge tire clearance, slightly more relaxed geometry and even disc brakes are the hallmarks of the ideal gravel bike.
In fact, if you could have just one bike, the gravel bike might be the most versatile of them all. With careful tire selection, a gravel bike will excel not only on rural roads, but on the pavement, in the city and even on light single track. Try that with your Colnagarello!
Step Three: Hit the Grit!
This should be self-evident.