Daily Rental: $89
Price: Starting at $4200
Esker Elkat Description
A recent addition to our mountain bike lineup, the Esker Elkat (elk + cat) is billed simply as a, “mountain bike.” If you have to put it in a category, the geometry, travel and wheels make it a 27.5 trail bike. It has a tough carbon frame with 150mm of travel in the back and we set it up with a 160mm DVO Diamond D1 fork to help tame Southern Utah’s famous slickrock chunk. The Esker Elkat is the first bike to get Dave Weagle’s new Orion suspension system. The Orion suspension gives the Elkat a distinctive playful feel with a smooth, plush ride and tons of traction. With its clean, swoopy carbon lines, the Elkat is also one of the prettiest full-suspension mountain bikes we’ve seen in quite some time.
Most mountain bikers probably haven’t heard about Esker – yet. They’re a small rider-owned company located in the mountains of Montana and they only make two bikes – the Elkat and a bikepacking/adventure hardtail called the Hayduke. Esker may be small but they have tons of bike industry experience. The owners are avid mountain bikers who worked for big bike brands for many years before they decided to do their own thing and started Esker. That experience shows in the Esker Elkat’s thoughtful product spec, fun-focused geometry, Dave Weagle suspension and sleek, carbon frame.
There was a time when we didn’t have all kinds of fat tire bike categories. We just had mountain bikes. They were designed for fun and built to handle as much as possible. That’s the philosophy behind the Elkat. If you’re looking for a big enduro smasher or a featherweight marathon bike, you’re not gonna find it here. The Elkat isn’t an enduro bike, it’s not a cross-country bike and it’s not a downhill bike – it’s a straight-up trail bike designed for good times on all kinds of trails. We’ve ridden the Elkat on everything from alpine singletrack at Brian Head to technical slickrock on the Hurricane mesas and had fun on all of it. With 27.5 wheels, nimble geometry and amazing traction, it’s ideal for tight, twisty singletrack and punchy, slickrock tech, a la Gooseberry Mesa.
Part of what makes the Elkat such a fun trail bike is its “slack & steep” geometry. It’s designed to make the bike versatile, easy to ride and fun. The seat tube angle is a healthy 75.9° for comfortable climbing, the head angle is a slack (for a trail bike) 65.5° and the short 16.7-inch chainstays and tighter cockpit make the bike nimble and playful. If you’re a fan of poppy bikes that have you looking for every little lip and rock to send, you’ll love the Elkat.
The most notable and innovative thing about the Esker Elkat is the new Orion Dynamics suspension. Orion comes from Dave Weagle, mountain biking’s most prolific suspension designer and the DW behind the popular DW Link suspension. Like the DW Link, Orion is a dual link design with two short links between the front and rear triangles. However, Orion’s main pivot is in-line with the bottom bracket and that gives the Elkat its very own feel. It’s a very active suspension design with excellent bump absorption and fantastic traction. Imagine a poppy suspension with the pedaling efficiency of a DW Link bike (Ibis and Pivot) and the confident plushness of a Knolly. In Bike Mag’s Elkat review they called it a, “hover bike,” because it seems to float through rock gardens and up technical climbs. Another benefit of the in-line main pivot is there’s zero pedal feedback. With the Esker’s Orion suspension it feels like you can pedal smoothly through anything – that’s the, “hover bike,” feeling Bike Mag described. Pick your line and the bike will calmly navigate whatever you point it at.
To summarize, the Esker Elkat is an innovative and versatile trail bike from a cool new rider-focused brand. More important – it’s super fun. We think it lives up to its moniker, with the poise and strength of an elk and the dexterity of a cat. Thanks to the Orion suspension and Esker’s “slack & steep” geometry, the Elkat has a unique lively feel you really need to experience for yourself. Luckily, we have the Esker Elkat for rent, so that’s easy to do.
At OTE, Hurricane, we have the Esker Elkat for rent and for sale. The components listed in our Elkat specs table (below) are for Esker’s entry-level build. At just $4200, it’s a great value for a fun and durable build – especially for a carbon bike. You might have noticed the bike in our photos doesn’t match that spec. That’s because we made a few key upgrades, most notably, the DVO Diamond D1 fork. The DVO fork offers more tuning options than the stock Fox 36 and it’s a great fit for a pure trail bike like the Elkat. If you’re looking for a deal, all of our rental bikes are for sale. If you rent the Elkat and love it, we’ll be happy to box it up and send it home with you. We can also build you a brand new Elkat with pretty much any parts you want. We love building dream bikes for our customers and there’s almost nothing we can’t do.
*Price and specs subject to change.
Esker Elkat Specs
The specs below are for the entry-level Esker Elkat. If you’d like to buy a bike, we can build it out with almost any components you want. Dream big!
|Drivetrain:||SRAM Eagle NX or Shimano SLX|
|Wheels:||SUNringlé Düroc Expert|
|Tires:||WTB Vigilante/Verdict 2.5|
|Frame:||150mm-travel high-modulus carbon with Smooth AF molding|
|Fork:||Fox Performance 36|
|Shock:||Fox Float Performance DPS|
|Brakes:||Magura MT Trail disc brakes|
|Stem:||Esker Epoch 35.0|
|Handlebar:||Esker Epoch Alloy|
|Headset:||Wolf Tooth Components|
*Prices and specs subject to change.
Esker Elkat Geometry
|Size||SM (15.0″/ 380mm)||MD (16.0″/ 410mm)||LG (17.7″/ 450mm)||XL (19.3″/ 490mm)|
|Virtual TT||21.8 in. / 554mm||23.1 in. / 587mm||24.0 in. / 609mm||24.9 in. / 632mm|
|Seat Tube Length||15.0 in. / 380mm||16.1 in. / 410mm||17.7 in. / 450mm||19.3 in. / 490mm|
|Head Tube Length||3.9 in. / 99mm||4.5 in. / 115mm||5.0 in. / 126mm||5.6 in. / 143mm|
|Bottom-Bracket Height||13.6 in. / 345mm||13.6 in. / 345mm||13.6 in. / 345mm||13.6 in. / 345mm|
|Chainstay Length||16.7 in. / 425mm||16.7 in. / 425mm||16.7 in. / 425mm||16.7 in. / 425mm|
|Stack Height||23.2 in. / 590mm||23.8 in. / 605mm||24.2 in. / 615mm||24.8 in. / 630mm|
|Reach Length||16.14 in. / 410mm||17.32 in. / 440mm||18.11 in. / 460mm||18.9 in. / 480mm|
|Standover Height||29.3 in. / 744mm||29.3 in. / 745mm||29.4 in. / 747mm||29.9 in. / 759mm|
|Wheelbase||45.1 in. / 1146mm||46.6 in. / 1183mm||47.6 in. / 1208mm||48.6 in. / 1235mm|
Esker Elkat Pricing
The prices and specs below are for Esker’s standard Elkat build kits. We can build a custom Esker Elkat for you with almost any components you want. We love building custom bikes! If you have any questions or want to talk about ordering and building your very own Esker Elkat mountain bike, give us a call: (435)635-5455
|Elkat S||Carbon||SRAM NX or Shimano SLX||Fox Rythm 36||Fox Performance Float DPS||Sun Duroc Expert||$4,200|
|Elkat R||Carbon||SRAM GX or Shimano XT||Fox Performance Elite 36||Fox Performance Float DPS||Industry Nine 101 Enduro S||$5,400|
|Elkat RS||Carbon||SRAM GX or Shimano XT||Fox Factory 36 Grip 2||Fox Factory DPX2||Reynolds TR Carbon||$6,600|
*Prices and specs subject to change.