So, what's the big deal?
Having had ridden the previous version of the Pivot Trail 429 and feeling like it was the best all-around trail bike I’d ridden, and seeing so many independent reviews on this bike, I was eager to finally get our demo on the trail.
I waited patiently for the bike to get its Ride Wrap before testing its trail prowess.
I’m not going to talk about the components and how the drivetrain shifts (it’s nice) or how well the brakes work (they do) or how amazing Fox LiveValve is (it is). I’d rather tell you about the bikes attributes and how it handles our trails.
Anyone that has ridden the RAMBA trail system knows it has a bit of climbing. Some easy, some hard and some... are you kidding me!
Climbing the smoother climbs felt nice. It’s not XC bike fast, but not too far removed. The rooty and rocky climbs didn’t phase the bike. It almost floated over the roots and smaller rocks. The “are you kidding me climbs” (examples: bigger rock step ups or roots plus being steep) were where this bike stood out! The rear suspension kept the tire planted and supported me while putting the power down, rather than sinking through its travel. It climbs almost effortlessly no matter the terrain.
Cornering with the Trail 429 felt natural. I didn’t feel like I needed to learn the bike or make adjustments to the set up. Steering was sharp, precise and quick. The bike loves to dance around on the trail when the corners get tighter. Leaning the bike into a corner is comfortable and accelerating out of the corner is quick and responsive. In short, it’s really fun and fills you with confidence.
Pointing the Trail 429 down hill is when you get something you may not expect from a mid travel trail bike. It’s fast and eats rough terrain for breakfast!! Though it’s not as plush as its big travel sibling the Switchblade (love that bike!) or my Scott Ransom. It’s still very stable. Plus having 130mm of front and 120mm of rear squish is plenty for most trails. Bombing over roots and rock was easy and the bike’s light front end make it super fun to huck off of smaller drops. The 66° head angle made rock rolls easy and didn’t allow the bike to stall out when the front end dropped into a hole.
Who is this bike for?
Well... there’s no “perfect” bike. That being said, if you want a great climbing, easy descending, and great cornering bike that you can ride all day, race the Marji, or take on trips across the country, and big hit bike parks aren’t your thing, the Trail 429 is for you! If real techy trails and bigger jumps/drops, enduro events and long days in the saddle are your jam, get a Switchblade.
Honestly either bike will put a dang big smile on your face!! I know I have one on mine after today’s ride!