Borealis Telluride Fatbike Review
Borealis Telluride Fat Bike
- Sram Sram Eagle GX 1-12 Drivetrain
- Sram Guide RS Disc Brake Levers
- RaceFace NextR Carbon Crankset
- Manitou Mastodon 120mm Suspension Fork
- H.E.D. 27,5 Alloy Tubeless Wheelset
- LevSi Dropper Seatpost
- Borealis Carbon Handlebars
- Terrene Cake Eater Light Tubeless Ready Tires
As a convert to the world of fat biking the past 3 years, I was given the opportunity to demo the Borealis Telluride Fat bike. I headed down to Colorado Springs to the world headquarters of Borealis to pick up the Borealis Telluride. When I first laid eyes on the Telluride, it was love at first sight. I had to temper my enthusiasm, but I felt like a kid with a brand new toy I've wanted for years. The photos that I had viewed didn't do the Telluride any justice.
Steve Kaczarek, the owner of Borealis greeted me and after some small talk, we started to discuss the finer points of the Borealis Telluride. When you first view the Telluride, the first thing that pops is the wheel size. It is obvious that this isn't a revised version of previous Borealis models. The H.E.D alloy 27.5 wheel set with the Terrene Cake Eater 4.0 Tires just beg you to touch them and wonder what adventure you can go on right now, I'm talking immediately! As we continued to discuss the Telluride, the top tube length on the Telluride has been reduced to allow for a more relaxed riding position. So far, I have put a little over 60 miles on the Telluride, between rides Buffalo Creek, Staunton State Park, Flying J Ranch and Maxwell Falls, day and night, dirt, rocks, sand and snow, the riding position has definitely proven to reduce fatigue and improve the overall enjoyment of the rides.
First ride at Buffalo Creek on the Borealis Telluride
Another important advantage that has been incorporated into the Borealis Telluride, is the reduction of the Q Factor ( the distance between your feet and the pedals ) in the overall width of the bottom bracket. The norm for bottom brackets on fat bikes is 100mm. That Borealis has reduced the Tellurides bottom bracket to 83mm. In doing so, it significantly reduces the Q Factor. On one of my demo rides, the reduced width was apparent. A group of us went to Buffalo Creek for a night ride. Total distance was roughly 22 miles and 2700 ft of elevation gain. Temperatures went from 49 degrees to 34 at the end of the ride, that being 1130pm. Over the course of the ride, my legs never felt the burden of riding the Borealis Telluride.
Fresh snow and first tracks at Flying J Ranch on Borealis Telluride
Lets talk about the performance. The Borealis Telluride handled everything that I threw at it. My first demo ride was a 15 mile ride at Buffalo Creek. Riding conditions ranged from sandy, rocky, technical to hard pack sand. The Telluride never missed a beat. In some of the more technical rocky sections, the reduced bottom bracket width of 83mm was a blessing. It allowed for clear passage in the narrow rocky sections, something that we all can appreciate. The test bike came equipped with a Manitou Mastodon Suspension Fork. I have kept it locked out roughly 90% of the time. With the tire pressure I normally run, I rarely felt the need to use the suspension. If the Telluride didn't have the Manitou Mastodon fork, I wouldn't have missed it and enjoyed the added weight savings of the rigid carbon fork that comes standard.
Flying J Ranch Open Space in the snow, what's not to love
If you haven't experienced a night ride on mountain bikes, try it at a trail where night riding is permitted. It's a whole different experience that is sure to be a memorable adventure. Again, we went to Buffalo Creek for test the Borealis Telluride. So far, this would be the longest ride on the bike. We went approximately 22 miles with 2700 ft of climbing over 3 hours. The Telluride performed well. The dropper seat post was a added bonus that got used on the descents. This is where the front suspension came in handy a few times. Again, if it wasn't on the bike, I wouldn't have missed it. On this ride, I had the tires inflated more than I normally would. The H.E.D alloy wheel set is not recommended for this type of terrain. They are meant for snow and they perform well in those conditions. If you plan on riding your fat bike most of the time no matter the season, there are other wheel set combinations that would be a better option. Over the course of the ride, the Borealis Telluride climbed and descended and navigated technical sections well. The reduced bottom bracket really show it's true advantage on the technical rocky sections.
Night ride at Buffalo Creek
In summary, the Borealis Telluride exceeded my expectations in all the trail conditions that I rode. If you are looking for a fat bike, I recommend that you put the Borealis Telluride on the list to look at. When you compare the Borealis Telluride to other manufacturers models, you can compare them and make an informed decision. I want to thank Borealis for allowing me to borrow their test bike. I will be doing another final write up after I convert the Telluride to a rigid carbon fork. Stay tuned......
Paul Saueracker is Co-Owner of Evergreen Mountain Sports, which is an authorized Borealis dealer. Evergreen Mountain Sports offers Borealis fat bikes for sales and rentals, located in Conifer, Colorado. For further information, please check out www.EvergreenMountainSports.com or stop by the shop.