Saturday, January 17, 2015

Five Years with the Salsa Fargo

I've now had my Salsa Fargo for five years and it is time to sum up my experiences with it.

Inspired by a number of bikepacking articles from the US, I ordered a Salsa Fargo XXL sized frame from Foxcomp in December 2009 and it arrived a few weeks later. January 16th I had it assembled and got to test it. I liked it.

I soon made a frame bag and started taking it out for overnighters.

It soon became my number one bikepacking bike. Compared to my FS 29er, it offered the possibility to ride without a backpack and it was also good enough on technical trails, in addition to feeling a lot more right riding all sorts of roads.

With this bike I started to return to the area where I spent my childhood and youth, sometimes I took the train there and a number of times I just rode the 100 km there on road with the Fargo.

After I got a fatbike, I still used the Fargo for winter outings involving spending more time on roads.

For a few years I also had a road bike, but I found that I rather took the Fargo when going out for riding roads, since it allowed me to take detours into the forest when I came upon interesting places.

It has seen three Mammoth Marches.

Almost daily commuting is another task it is used for. (I do have to possibility to commute on mostly trails when I feel like it).

The Salsa Fargo has been an excellent bike. It is very versatile and is a good choice if you only want to have a few bikes. For me it has been a good complement to the fatbike, though if I could have only one bike it would be a fatbike with a separate 29+ wheelset for the summer. For commuting and everyday use a simple fully rigid bike is a good choice, since it doesn't need much maintenance. Most of the components have stayed the same for five years. The drop bar was switched to the excellent Salsa Woodchipper as soon as it was available, the saddle was exchanged to a Rido R2 and the Avid BB5 brakes were recently switched to the better BB7 model, but otherwise it's the same (not counting worn out drive trains and bearings).

All-in-all, a good five years and I see no reason why I wouldn't be happy with it for another five years.

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