Editor’s Note: Our Gal Jess has been riding a Specialized Stumpjumper Expert 29 all summer. It’s a lot of name and a lot of bike. In Jess’s words…
Mountain biking has become my “adult” replacement plan for organized sports, or as some may call it, sports ball. In looking for the right bike for my riding style, I was initially skeptical to go with a full suspension. After some time on the trail with the new Specialized Stumpjumper Short Travel Expert, I was hooked on this bike. If you would rather saddle up a mountain goat than a thoroughbred race horse, this could be the bike for you.
After riding a few different styles of full suspension, what made me fall in love with this bike is the performance of the suspension and overall comfort of the ride. In Specialized Trail geometry, the bike is comfortable, yet very capable of handling anything from fast packed hero dirt at Maple Hill, to rocky, rooty, drops in Copper Harbor. With 130mm of travel up front paired with 120mm of rear suspension, the bike felt playful on our Southwest Michigan trails, yet handled the gnar of rocky singletrack with ease. The trail tuned rear suspension has a very stable climbing platform that put to rest my fear of potential climbing inefficiencies. The RockShox Pike up front takes the bite out of the trail with a smooth and responsive performance feel to keep you rolling through technical sections….even when you may internally be freaking out (perhaps that’s just me). If you’re looking to shave a little weight and improve rolling resistance on our local trails, swapping out the Butcher and Purgatory tires that come stock will do the job.
Specialized has a full line up of Stumpjumpers with a variety of specs to fit your performance expectations and budget. Overall I’ve been super happy with the stock set up of the ST Expert. Traveling with this bike has been a blast. At 28 pounds, yes it’s a bit burly, but it’s versatility and nimbleness will have you wanting to saddle up this mountain goat and find some gnarly trails.