Sea Otter gallery, pt 7: Retro mountain bikes

Classics on display from Breezer, Litespeed, Mountain Cycle and more

The Sea Otter Classic is generally a time for the bike companies to show-off their latest creations, but this year there were a fair number of vintage models on display as well. In such a technology-driven sport, it's amazing to take a look in the rearview mirror to see just how far we've come in a few short decades. 

Rigid bikes, non-dropping seatposts and 26in wheels were the norm once upon a time. As were narrow handlebars and skinny tires.There's plenty of innovation to reflect on, too. Ideas that didn't make it very far — sometimes because they were really, really bad— and others that were just a bit too far ahead of the times. Take a walk down memory lane in this retro mountain bike gallery. 

This particular breezer was built for fellow mountain bike pioneer charlie kelly. it's on loan from the mountain bike hall of fame: this particular breezer was built for fellow mountain bike pioneer charlie kelly. it's on loan from the mountain bike hall of fame
This particular breezer was built for fellow mountain bike pioneer charlie kelly. it's on loan from the mountain bike hall of fame: this particular breezer was built for fellow mountain bike pioneer charlie kelly. it's on loan from the mountain bike hall of fame

Classic mountain bikes stood out from the crowd of the latest carbon wünderbikes 

Josh Patterson

Tech Editor, US
Josh has been riding and racing mountain bikes since 1998. Being stubborn, endurance racing was a natural fit. Josh bankrolled his two-wheeled addiction by wrenching at various bike shops across the US for 10 years and even tried his hand at frame building. These days Josh spends most of his time riding the trails around his home in Fort Collins, Colorado.
  • Discipline: Mountain, cyclocross, road
  • Preferred Terrain: Anywhere with rock- and root-infested technical singletrack. He also enjoys unnecessarily long gravel races.
  • Current Bikes: Trek Remedy 29 9.9, Yeti ASRc, Specialized CruX, Spot singlespeed, Trek District 9
  • Dream Bike: Evil The Following, a custom Moots 27.5+ for bikepacking adventures
  • Beer of Choice: PBR
  • Location: Fort Collins, CO, USA

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