Best Adventure Gravel Build 2024

@The_Conductor @BCM have either of you ridden the Northern Rail Trail? The lower third is about 30 minutes from my parents and I might ride it the next time I visit them.

Yes, multiple training rides there starting from the south. Never made it all the way to Lebanon, but close to 40 miles before turning around. Most of it would be fine on a road bike with wider tires.

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That’s really good to know. I’m scheduled for two weeks of training in RI in Oct and will likely visit my folks. Not sure I’ll have a gravel bike by then, but will bring my road bike and gravel wheels. :+1:

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Check the Rodeo Labs TD4

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Been waffling back and forth. I’m not planning on buying anything until next fall at the earliest as I’m going to be mostly XC focused this year, and have a new XC bike coming.

I have to admit I’ve kept coming back to the MOG so it still is in the mix, but that TD4 does look very interesting, with one big downside (for me) - unfortunately not compatible with SRAM UDH.

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It’s kind of crazy that I built this beautiful bike and now I’m looking to build another one: A drop bar Specialized Evo World Cup.

Seems like it comes stock with 34T chainring. So the only real mods are:

  • Dropbar (wonder about the integration)
  • Tires. Adding the Conti Race Kings
  • Eggbeater 11 pedals


Sounds weird, be sure to post pics.

How are you going to handle the fit going from flat bar to drop? Reach numbers are WAY longer than an equivalent road bike per size, so will you size way down or use some unusual bars or ?? Even with a very short stem it’s hard to get the bars in the right spot without sizing down.

Likewise brakes, can you just plug SRAM road levers into post-mount brake calipers? I think this is not sanctioned (different stroke volumes) but might work anyway.

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It’s been tried before

Without getting this thread too off topic… I debated the Epic WC as a drop bar build before building my Epic HT drop bar… But seeing as there is no lockout for the rear, and the fact the frame is heavier than my Epic Evo, I saw no real reason to consider it further.

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Doesn’t the “no gulp” position address this?

It can’t be….this bike is 20lbs :thinking:

The Gulp settings supposedly eliminate the need for a lockout… But given the less than stellar reputation of their Brain system doing the same, I’m a traditionalist.

See here: Epic WC @ Flowmountainbike

  • Specialized S-Works Epic EVO– 1,659g
  • Specialized S-Works Epic World Cup – 1,712g
  • Specialized Epic World Cup Pro – 1,812g
  • Specialzed Epic HT ~ 909g
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Thanks!. It makes sense, it’s about $700g for the rear shock. The HT def lighter, I guess it depends on weather one needs the suspension or not.

The only thing to think about, this would leave you with 3 bikes with a lot of overlap.

Unless you’re really all in on gravel, I might be looking for a 120/120 XC bike with dual lockouts to complement the two gravel bikes you have. You could play around with drop bars or narrow flat bars and aero bars, but it’d leave you with a little bit more versatility than an HT or the WC.

Or just buy 'em all if you want. You only live once!

For reference, my FS Oiz is about 21.25# ready to ride with light wheels and race kings.

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I have an Epic Evo MTB. The only thing I don’t have is a dedicated road bike. I use a BMC Kaius for that purpose.

I guess what I’m looking is for a ultralight climbing bike that it’s also cushy for descends and bike packing….think Colorado Trail.

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For years I was a pretty devout hardtail guy… After BonesToBlue last year on a hardtail, I knew that there was a better way. And the Epic Evo changed that. I’m targeting the CTR this year, and don’t think there is a much better bike out there for that event, for me at least(with an eye towards lightweight and nimble and gunning for a win versus a finish).

When I was considering the Epic WC, it was for a drop bar Tour Divide build… It would not be my first, second, or third choice for CTR. Either commit to saving weight and go with a hardtail, or go big.

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Some nice builds here.

My $0.02… for an adventure bike, I’d want minimal electronics and a lot less money invested. Metal frame, mechanical shifting, regular spokes. Not that I’d cheap out, but $5-$6k for a bike I’m going to abuse sounds better. Spend the big bucks on the race bike.


I have a Lauf Seigla for adventure/bikepacking, and it works great. The suspension fork is excellent and really all you need for reasonable single track, and much better than a telescoping fork on gravel or pavement. Fits 2.25” tires, very light, compelling pricing, and you can reasonably race it in gnarlier gravel events or load it up for touring.


@Drew how have you setup your Seigla for bikepacking / adventure riding? I also have a Seigla with the Grit fork and have seen a couple of setups, including one for Tour Divide. Pics would be great, too. Thanks!

I got a Tailfin rack and bags, and it’s been superb. To this I’ve added a small frame bag and handlebar roll, and that’s worked great for even quite gnarly adventure riding. The Tailfin is a really nice design, and so easy/quick to put on that it also works great for commuting.


@Drew thanks for the pic and description! I also have the Seigla in silfra (blue) and went with the Orr Cycling Exploration Bundle in twilight (dark blue). I don’t have any pics yet and haven’t really put the bags through their paces - just a bunch of day rides.

For an over-nighter I’m planning for this summer I think I’m going to get Apidura Expedition Saddle Pack, 14L. I’m glad to hear that you like the Tailfin rack. It’s more than I want to spend right now but I will probably invest in one if I regularly do anything beyond what the Expedition can handle.

Any issues with loading up your bar roll and speed wobble? I’ve seen a few concerns posted online, but mostly from people riding on smooth roads with a heavy bar bag, or some speed-induced wobble during fast descents.

Again, thanks!!

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