I have owned a few Surly bikes over the past few years. All of them are personally groomed in my favorite black and red color scheme. Not only does it look good and catch the eye of all the single ladies out there, I am sure there is a bit of durability and speed added in there somewhere. I started my Surly relationship with the well loved Long Haul Trucker. There was plenty to fall in love with!
The folks at Surly give you an abundance of mounting options and a bombproof frame to carry all the junk you will deem necessary to lug up and down the various steep passes you will eventually encounter. Believe me, this steel frame definitely rides better when it is loaded for touring then when stripped to race weight.
Next in the stables was Surly’s do it all, go just about anywhere Ogre. Yeah, she liked to be dressed up in black and red too. The Ogre comes with horizontal dropouts and dedicated mounting locations for a Rohloff and rear trailer, plus numerous water bottle mounts. With a low bottom bracket and short top tube, the Ogre provides all day comfort, well as long as you have a Brooks saddle in the mix.
Which brings us to today. The Ogre gave me just about everything I could have wanted in a bike. Times are getting FAT and I was ready to stuff my face. Along came the Surly Krampus. The Krampus easily wears size 29×3.0 shoes and has a bit more slacked and mountain friendly geometry. Longing for the dirt instead of asphalt, this bike would give me the means to explore with a bit more fun.
The Krampus was not built with the Rohloff in mind, but all that can be fixed with a Monkey Bone. The krampus frame and fork are stout and well made, easily distinguished the second you hold it in your hands. I went with the flat black Krampus Ops (which stands for “optional.”) the Ops comes with Surly’s Modular Dropout System, which allows the rear dropout to be run in a standard vertical dropout with hanger, horizontal track dropout, or 142×12 through axle. Pretty fancy!
So, which Surly show fits best? All of them! I wish I could have a whole closet full of them.