The first two bikes I bought myself were “mountain bikes”, but only the second was a real mountain bike. It was a no-suspension hard-tail, before they were called “hard-tails”, Bianchi Peregrine. I actually still have that bike, but now my son rides it. TBH, when I got it, I didn’t really use it for mountain, or trail riding, it was an urban (or maybe Urbana ;)) assault vehicle; mostly doing the business for commuting, riding through fountains, or up-and-down stairs. It wasn’t until I left university that I had the time, and transportation, for any real trail/track riding, and I loved it. Did I get beat up, yes. Was it jarring sometimes, you bet. Was it fun, hells to the yeah!
I bought a gravel bike to get that experience again. While also having a bike that’s OK on the road, whatever the surface, in the woods, or in the snow. I don’t generally want to drive somewhere to ride a bike, unless we’re talking about Colorado, so the first bit is important. If there are any trails around here where suspension is a requirement, I haven’t found them, and even if they exist, I doubt they’re in riding distance. Also, I never really understood the goal of suspension bike. They’re slow and heavy, sure, you can do crazy things with them; like ride over big rocks (whoa). That’s not really my thing – especially now that I’m older and don’t bounce as well as I used to. But, even when I was young, and indestructible, I didn’t get it.
This is a really long winded intro to a video which confuses the bejeezus out of me. It only took about 20 seconds to confirm something the observant viewer already knew from looking at their kit in the videos leading up to this one (baggies anyone?). That’s not to say they aren’t entitled to an opinion, of course they are, just that I’m not surprised that they don’t get it. Maybe that makes me a chronic “under biker”, or maybe it just means that I’m not cut out for jumping off a cliff on a bike.
If you’ve made it this far, IMO that abomination at the top of the page isn’t a gravel bike; it’s a drop-bar MTB. Love it or hate it, let’s at least be honest about what it is :).