14 September 2011 - 7:49Testing: Geax Gato 29er Tire
I love tires. I like testing new tires out, finding out my likes and dislikes, comparing them to others, you get the picture. Over the years, my tastes have changed in regard to what I’m looking for in a tire. I’m prepared to make certain sacrifices to get what I want. I’m always looking for that delicate balance between light weight, volume, tread type and durability. For example, big tires are seldom light, and while those few tires that are may be light, they aren’t necessarily durable or grippy.
Geax is a company that is relatively new to the Bike29 tire catalog, but I can say that I have been thoroughly impressed with their tire offerings thus far. In fact, I still have the AKA on my white A9C (Rambo in case you forgot). Last year I spent a lot of time on the Saguaro, which I also found to my liking. Between the two, I’d have to say I prefer the AKA because of how fast it rolls, but this test is not about those tires, we’re talking about the new big kid on the block, the Gato.
The Gato has an aggressive, open tread pattern, with a fairly thick casing, and sized at 2.3″, it isn’t exactly a race tire. It’s all there, all 800g of it. I knew it was going to be heavy, my interest in this tire was to see how well it stacks up against other “big boy” tires, like the Nevegal, or locally popular Rampage. Weightwise, the Gato is right in between the two. It’s touted on the company website as a tire for wet and loose conditions.
What I hope to find out about this tire, is how well it handles our soon to be deteriorating trail conditions. I’ve all but hung my racing hat up for the season. It’s time to start riding for fun, which means that heavy grippy tires, and lazy line choices are back in fashion for me. I’ve had great experience with the Nevegal, Rampage and Nobby Nic. How well will this tire ultimately stack up? My expectations are high, but so far, there is nothing in my first few rides on these tires that gives me any indication that I will be disappointed.