Trek Rumblefish Elite
I have had the Trek Rumblefish Elite in hand for many weeks now yet for one reason or another I have been unable to hit the trails. Well that all changed yesterday when I found the time to head up to Lake Wintergreen on the New Haven, Hamden Connecticut line. Lake wintergreen is my favorite place to mountain bike with trails that very from easy to nasty and technical. The nasty and technical stuff was obviously the driver for purchasing the Trek Rumblefish Elite. I set out do a small 6 mile loop that provided some moderate challenges as well as a little bit of black top. The first thing that I noticed about the new bike was the ride height. The bike gives the rider the impression of being on a road bike and it should because the wheels are the same diameter. The next thing I notice is how well the bike rolls and keeps the momentum going. While I had no way to verify my speed I have no doubt that the first leg of my ride was my fastest time ever through that trail. The Trek Rumblefish Elite just rolls over roots and rocks like nothing. In no time I found myself actually aiming for obstacles that turned out to be no obstacle at all. In fact the biggest issue was my brain. My reflexes in many places expected to do what they did in the same spots with the Gary Fisher Sugar. I found I was tensing up for objects and obstacles that turned into non events. Next up is the suspension. All those inches of travel make for a great controlled ride. Both wheels stay put. I did not take the opportunity to lockout the suspension on the Trek Rumblefish Elite. I will save that and further suspension comments for another day. The big soft tires also absorb shock very well and much to my surprise the low air pressure did not make me feel like I had flat tires once I hit pavement. The shifting was fast smooth and precise. This mid-level control set out performed my 12-year-old all Shimano XTR controls of the Gary Fisher Sugar. Kind of makes me wonder how good the current XT/XTR control are. I did not have enough time in the saddle to judge the bike setup but in general everything felt about right. Admittedly on this short outing I was hard pressed to find anything I did not like about the Trek Rumblefish Elite.
Now with the negative. Unfortunately my ride was not uneventful. Something in shifting controls became problematic in the two highest gears. Very annoying grinding that was simply not tolerable. I’m sure it’s just a simple adjustment that is needed. But it was frustrating none the less. I am going to get the Trek Rumblefish Elite back to the dealer ASAP and follow-up with a more detailed impression. I will save the official “Trek Rumblefish Elite Review” for late summer when I get a few hundred miles on the Trek Rumblefish Elite.