Minions got your back …and front.
A few years ago, back when I was a wee little MTB beginner, I was riding on some Maxxis Forecasters because that’s what my brand new cross-country bike came with. To a beginner, they looked like perfectly fine mountain bike tires. And to be clear, they are. I’m not trying to hate on Forecasters. They’re fast rolling, relatively light, and not a bad choice for XC riding. But I eventually realized that I’m an aggressive rider. I was pushing my bike beyond what its skinny wheels and tires were designed for, especially around the corners. I was soon racking up multiple bruised shoulders and scraped knees from losing grip and sliding out. At first, I attributed this to a lack of skill. It actually took an embarrassingly long amount of time before I realized that my tires were simply not hooking up the way I needed them to.
That’s when I started searching for the knobbliest of knobby tires. Schwalbe Nobby Nics? I mean, they have “nob” right there in the name. Continental Der Barons? They look pretty aggressive too. Maxxis Minion DHRs or DHFs? What the hell is the difference??? After some internet sleuthing, I found that a lot of people really preferred the Minions, particularly the DHF–DHR combo. The DHFs have more aggressive, straight-cornered knobs for the best grip, and the DHRs have angled edges on the middle knobs for faster rolling. Plus, their product description stated they were designed to give superior grip in the corners. Perfect!!! So that’s what I went with.
Well let me tell you, these puppies have not let me down. They have lateral grip for days! Sometimes I can feel the front tire sliding through a loose turn and begin to lose grip, but then it hooks back up and carries on like you were never in any danger as if to say, “No worries. I’ve got you dawg!” They have never washed out on me except for on the most slipperiest of slippy surfaces.
Since going this route, I cannot imagine having a mountain bike without them. I’ve put Minions on all my bikes since then. Sure they’re not the fastest, and definitely not the lightest. But if you’re an aggressive rider, there’s no compromise for pure grip.
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