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GREAT GEAR by stephen regenold by stephen regenold


Climb On


When the going gets tough, get going on one of


these rugged off-road bikes. STEP ONTO THE PEDALS of a mountain bike, point the front wheel down a trail, and you’re in for a dose of freedom and speed that might make hiking boots forever after feel obsolete. The sport of mountain biking—now


more than three decades old—has become mainstream. There are moun- tain-biking leagues. National Parks may soon add the activity in areas long off limits to two wheels. And this summer, Scouts and Scouters will build mountain- bike trails in West Virginia that will connect to The Summit high-adven- ture base (see story on Page 4). Here are five models, from entry-level


to high-end, that represent a spread of price ranges and features. ¿


STEPHEN REGENOLD is founder and editor of gearjunkie.com.


MONGOOSE DECEPTION $199, walmart.com With good customer reviews—“Lots of bang for the buck!”—and an unbeatable price, the Mongoose Deception, sold at Walmart, is available for less than $200. For the price, you get a beginner bike that will not last for years. Its components are low-end, and at 38 pounds the bike is ridiculously heavy. But it’s capable of riding moderate trails, and with its disc brakes, front suspension, and 29-inch wheels, a bike like the Deception offers an adequate introduction to the sport.


ENTRY-LEVEL:


34


S COUTING ¿ MAY•JUNE 2011


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