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Hardtrail mountain bikes are made to handle rough terrains and routinely have a far more upright frame than other bikes. The word “hardtrail” is gotten from the very fact that the rear of the bike, that is, the tail, is hard compared with the front, which includes full suspension to soften vibrations.
Their higher clearance makes it a lot easier to have over logs, rocks, ruts etc., while the front suspension absorbs stress and abuse, providing a much more comfortable riding experience.
These bikes are moved by wider and knobby tires that offer better grip and traction. The rims and spokes are also stronger and able to deal with rough terrains much better than bikes in other categories like: road, hybrid, BMX etc.
Gearing is another area that differentiates hardtrail mountain bikes as you get a broader selection of gearing that enables handling a wide range or rough terrains. The high-end of mountain bike gear range is never as tall as say a road bike, but low gears are well below a roadie, which is essential when conquering steep hills.
Hardtrail Versus Full-Suspension Mountain Bikes
Hardtrail vs. full-suspension mountain bikes is a debate-sparking topic and you will find a variety of arguments for and against both types. But ultimately this will depend on the kind of bike riding you’re enthusiastic about and of course the budget.
Let’s cover some differences between them to simply help those people who are new to mountain biking create a more informed buying decision.
As the name suggests, a hardtrail bike only features a front suspension, while a full-suspension mountain bike also features rear suspension. Both bikes have their particular group of advantages and disadvantages.
Full-suspension mountain bikes cannot beat the simplicity of hardtrail bikes, which have only front suspension and thus typically lighter, easier/cheaper to keep up}, and have less overall moving parts.
Although hardtrail bikes now include carbon frames that improve flex and comfort, full-suspension bikes remain a much better choice as it pertains to handling and comfort. So a much better choice if you’re venturing into some extreme terrain.
However, hardtrail bikes offer more value for the money and are the right mountain category to explore if your budget is under $1,000.