Changing gravel tires for Spring/summer


I got a gravel bike last Fall, mainly to take advantage of the forests surrounding me and get away from cars during Winter. Nothing technical or muddy, mainly clean paths with potholes or occasionnal tree debris.

Which is why I opted for some Continental Terra trail 40mm and I’m quite satisfied.

In my mind I was thinking of switching tires for the warmer season, as I’ll be mainly riding on asphalt, with some dry foret paths along the way, to have more of a "road bike feel ".

But the more I read on the subject, the more confused I get (I’m easily confused). Is there really a difference in aerodynamics and Rolling resistance with a slicker 32 or 33mm tire (or even 35), knowing that my average speed is 27km/h (16 mph) and there isn’t much climbing here ? Or will I lose in polyvalence and comfort ?

I was thinking of getting Eagle F1 in 32mm because they seem easy to fit and I’m a huge noob. But they aren’t gravel tires at all.

Thanks for your help !

Gravelkings Slick and SS are high volume tyres that are the road end of gravel tyres if you want to keep high volume.


Since trails are all muddy now, I switched my gravel/cross bike from Schwalbe microskin allrounders in 40mm to gp5000 in 32mm. The difference is like night and day. According to Bicycle Rolling Resistance | Rolling Resistance Tests I gained 40 watts from this change, and I believe it. You might lose a bit of comfort, and the surefootedness of gravel tires will be gone, but if you’re going to stay on asphalt for a while it will make your bike feel like a whole different beast.

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That was going to be my recommendation if you’re not going to keep the bike 100% on pavement. 32mm GP5000 is the way to go. I have it in 25mm on my bike now - great tire. I previously had the 28mm GP4000, which measures more like 30mm, on my cross bike for the summer. I took it on fast group road rides, and routinely took it on tame gravel and hard packed dirt trails. Was great. I have no doubt the 32mm version will be the same but better.


I agree with the posters above. Another reason is the Terra Trails are nice tires, but I believe I’ve read they wear fast. So I’d take them off for the predominantly asphalt rides to spare the knobs.

I have the Terra Speeds and I can’t yet say they wear fast because I haven’t put enough miles on to tell. The reason is I regularly switch wheelsets and mostly use 32mm gravel kings for road rides with a little gravel.

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Thanks a lot, this is all super helpful. I’m going to spend some time on that Bycicle rolling resistance website

One of my priorities though will be to find some easy to fit/inflate tubeless, as I only have a regular floor pump. Another thing to look into ! I could also ask my LBS to handle this, but there’s a 3 months waiting list right now…

Schwalbe G-One 35mm tires are the best of both worlds in my opinion.

You’re in a catch 22 there though. Easy to inflate generally means hard as hell (or impossible to do on your own) to get on your rims. I dont think enough research in the world will allow you to assume you’ve bought a tire that is tight enough to hold air when pumped with a floor pump, yet loose enough to get on without taking to the bike shop. It’s just gonna be a leap of faith IMO.

If you want straightforward…new and unfamiliar tubeless tires are the wrong choice.