Pedal Powered

Of bikes and trucks—Giant Trance 29er

If you drive a 4x4, we are willing to bet you also partake in other pedal-powered activities. No, we're not talking TIG welding or sewing machines, we mean bicycles.

For the better part of the last year, we've had the honor of adding a two-wheeled off-road machine to our fleet of four-bys—the Trance 29 from Giant Bicycles.

It's electric blue. It climbs escalator-smooth. It stops with hair-trigger precision. It comes packed with ego-stoking suspension travel. Its 29-inch tires inspire downhill confidence. And it felt right at home in the backs of our various 4x4s.

Over the last handful of months, we've strapped the Trance 29er to the back of our JK Wrangler, nestled it into the bed of Nissan's Destination Frontier, and loaded it alongside our rock climbing gear in the back of Truck Trend's Pickup Truck of the Year Contender, the GMC Sierra 1500 AT4.

We've spent picturesque evenings grinding up and slashing down our local XC/DH trails in the Santa Monica Mountains, taken sunrise and sunset rips through the southern Utah and Nevada deserts, and logged more laps than there were teeth on the back sprocket at the Mammoth Mountain and Big Bear bike parks.

Giant's Trance 29 fit smoothly into our quiver of bikes, filling the void between our cross-country racing hardtail 29er and the 26-inch hardtail jumper we like to whip around the local dirt jumps and skate parks. The 50-tooth granny gear was more than enough to sustain uphill travel while the tubeless Maxxis Minion DHF (front) and DHR (rear) rubber bit hard in the turns and stood up to punishing sidewall-munching obstacles. When aiming down the rock gardens, the Maestro rear suspension's 115 millimeters of travel and the Fox 34 Float's 130mm in the front kept the tires on the rocks while we stayed in control. Likewise, the duo damped even the biggest hits at the bike park from the mandatory drops to kickers. If we could change one thing on the bike, we'd swap in a larger chain ring in the front for a bit more top end speed, but we spent so much time on the trails, we didn't get around to the upgrade.

Bringing the Giant Trance 29 along on trips gave us a reason to explore further down the trail in search of perfect drops, scenic loops, and jump lines, and our rigs were more than up to the task of hauling one extra piece of fun-enabling gear. Whether you have a bike rack, roof rack, or an empty slot in your bed, take this one from us—the Giant Trance 29 will be a welcome addition to your next adventure.

 

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