Specialized has done an amazing job of shoehorning 29in wheels into even its smallest women’s bike. The 14.5kg weight and bigger wheels needed some serious effort from our smaller testers to get the Myka – like other 29ers – moving and successive stop/start trails weren’t a ton of fun.
- Highs: Custom tuned fork works even under the most petite riders; low standover and agile handling through size specific bars and team favourite flanged grips
- Lows: So-so saddle; long, skinny fork legs and semi-slicks are best coaxed rather than carved through slippery corners
Once running the fast rolling tread and bump shrinking big wheels of the Specialized steamrollered over trouble without us even thinking about it. While there’s a big clunk as it bounces back if you really wallop the fork into something, it’s great to see Specialized has actually tuned the spring to a lighter rider. You get full travel if you really try and the smooth traction offsets the flex coming from the skinny fork legs and QR hub axle.
The Myka is still remarkably quick witted for a 29er, turning with ease and rarely feeling too big for even the tightest singletrack. Standover clearance on our sample was better than some 650b bikes we've tested too.
An immediate rider-to-bike connection is helped out by size specific 640 or 660mm handlebar widths, and all our testers liked the small diameter flanged comfort grips.