We’re really excited to be one of the first shops in Utah (maybe even the US) to get the new 2020 Rocky Mountain Slayer 29er. Photo-John and Sanchez took it out for an early morning Grafton Mesa shakedown photo ride, last week. Grafton is a Hurricane area downhill/freeride classic. It was originally a Mormon pioneer woodcutter’s road. The remnants of that old “road” are now a steep, rocky mess – perfect for a first ride on the new Rocky Mountain Slayer!
The Slayer was one of the first dedicated freeride bikes to hit the market. It debuted in 2001 as a smaller, lighter alternative to the straight-up downhill bikes most freeriders (and Froriders) were using. We’ve come a ridiculously long way since then in terms of mountain bike progression and bike technology. With a burly but lightweight carbon frame (with an alloy rear triangle), contemporary geometry, bigger wheels and the latest suspension, the 2020 Slayer is a thoroughly modern, all-mountain freeride bike. It’s a bike you can confidently drop into any trail at the bike park on; or take on big-mountain pedal missions. After his first ride on the bike, Sanchez said the Rocky Mountain Slayer 29er, “is whatever you want it to be.”
The new Rocky Mountain Slayer is a lot more than a warmed over version of last year’s bike. It’s all new for 2020 with updated geometry, more travel and most importantly, it’s now available with 29-inch as well as 27.5-inch wheels. The 29er Slayer has 170mm of rear wheel travel and the 27.5 Slayer has 180mm. Both versions come with a 170mm fork. And if you like to go really big, the new Slayer is built to handle a 200mm dual crown fork, as well. Grafton Mesa is a big bike testing ground and the Slayer 29er’s combination of big wheels, 170mm coil shock and 170mm RockShox Lyrik fork smoothed out nearly every feature on the trail. The most common exclamation from Sanchez while riding the Rocky Mountain Slayer 29er was, “This thing rolls!”
Besides the Slayer’s beautiful red and black graphics, one of the first things that catches your eye is the big coil shock. That Rocky spec’d the Slayer with a coil in the rear says everything you need to know about how they intended the new Slayer to be ridden. It loves to go fast and smash rocks and drops. They didn’t just slap a coil on it, either. The rear linkage was tweaked to complement the coil shock. It’s plusher off the top and more progressive at the end of the stroke to avoid bottom-out. It still pedals well – for a big bike. But the 2020 Slayer’s suspension is definitely balanced in favor of the descents. Like any good big-mountain freeride bike, it’s built to get you to the top. But only so you can get on down.
The Rocky Mountain Slayer 29er carbon is a great addition to our mountain bike rental fleet and we encourage anyone interested in an enduro or freeride 29er to come check it out. If you like the looks of the Slayer 29er but want a more agile freeride bike, there’s also a 27.5 version. For freeride and park riders on a budget as well as mountain bikers who appreciate the reliability of aluminum, Rocky Mountain will have alloy Slayers available, as well. Interested in doing your own Southern Utah Rocky Mountain Slayer 29er test ride? Visit our Rocky Mountain Slayer bike page to rent or buy a Slayer and see more photos, specs and bike geometry.