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Arktos 29 Short Travel vs. Long Travel

Hayden Noel

// Why Short Travel?

With the introduction of the new Arktos 29ST (for short travel), Alchemy now offers two different 29er options to the market. Both bikes feature Alchemy’s patented Sine Suspension, a system which maximizes pedaling efficiency without detracting from downhill performance. So why choose one over the other? Well, the answer really depends on the type of riding you are doing. Here is a breakdown on short travel versus long travel and what makes the Arktos 29ST the next greatest trail weapon.

// Sine Performance

The heart of the Arktos 29ST is the Sine suspension system. The beauty of the Arktos is how it pedals and descends and that’s because of Sine. Sine is regressive through the first part of the travel to absorb small bumps and provide climbing traction, progression in the middle of the stroke to avoid wallowing on big hits or in hard, fast corners, and then slight regression again at end stroke to enable full use of your travel.

// Arktos 29ST

The Arktos 29ST is trail bike at heart, with 120mm rear travel and 140mm fork travel. It fits in the category with the Yeti SB130, Transition Smuggler and the Santa Cruz Hightower. We spec a Fox 36 fork, which gives you an indication of the terrain we expect the bike to be used in: rough and technical. The Arktos 29ST has modern trail bike geometry with a 66.1 head angle with 75.5 degree seat tube angle. While the Arktos 29 was designed to crush fast, open, super techy EWS tracks, the Arktos 29ST is capable of hitting the same bone-tingling descents, but adds a little fun in the mix. It turns quicker and changes directions faster on those tight switchbacks and still has that slack geometry to keep it stable at speeds. 


So, in the end the main difference to choose the Arktos 29ST over the standard Arktos 29 is really in the terrain you plan on riding, and how you plan on riding it. Is the terrain tighter and technical, with the focus on going fast AND having fun? Well, the more flickable Arktos 29ST is the bike for you. Are you hitting faster, most open terrain and wanting to be the first of your buddies to the bottom? In this case, the Arktos 29 is the bike of the day for you.

The 29ST is quicker in turns and more reactive to transitions where the Arktos 29 is more stable at high speeds. It makes sense, right? The ST has a steeper head angle and a shorter wheelbase, which are the important factors when getting a bike wedged around tight turns. Both bikes, by the way, feature 44mm offset forks and steep enough seat angles to put you in the perfect position over the bike for climbing. Now that you know the difference, the choice is yours.




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