What were you riding ten years ago?

Woah, it's been ten years already?!

With this week’s Over To You I’m rewinding the clock by a full decade. Inspired by Facebook’s ‘on this day’ app, which frequently pulls up embarrassing things I’d rather forget, I thought it might be fun to turn back the clock on my own two-wheeled antics and poke a bit of fun at what I was riding all that time ago.

Back in April 2007, my garage had three bikes inside — and probably another five in pieces (but that’s another story). For this article I’ll talk about my pick of the bunch and a bike that I still have happy memories of.

It was Specialized’s Enduro, a 2006 Expert model that I picked up for an excellent price at a local Specialized dealer.

Notice the seatpost, which my Dad drilled and bolted as I snapped it off in a crash #bikehacker
Notice the seatpost, which my Dad drilled and bolted as I snapped it off in a crash #bikehacker

I always loved the frame with its neat welds and unlikely shapes, right down to the finishing details such as the integrated shock guard at the rear. Its Horst link FSR suspension was almost exclusively praised and is a design that remains one of the most imitated of all time.

I can’t quite remember why I sold the Enduro but I definitely shouldn’t have

The anoraks out there will notice the red frame, which was reserved for demo bikes (hence the excellent price), while the absolute anoraks will realise I had swapped the standard DHX Air rear shock for a coil item. This was in an attempt to get the bike closer to the enduro-derived SX Trail model that I’d lusted after in the pages of Mountain Biking UK but could never afford.

I enjoyed this bike on everything from trail centres to bike parks, abused it as a short travel downhill bike and even used to have a laugh around BMX tracks on it.

Yes, the wheels look comically small now and the frame itself was definitely about two sizes too small for me (it’s more flickable that way, innit?), but I had more fun on this bike than probably any before it.

The stock handlebars were 640mm, but I don’t remember them feeling too narrow — it seems crazy to think that an extra 10cm+ of width is now the norm for bikes of this kind.

The good thing about buying a bike that was two sizes too small was that it could blend in at a BMX track, sort of
The good thing about buying a bike that was two sizes too small was that it could blend in at a BMX track, sort of

The Fox 36 TALAS fork was the one with the poo brown lowers, which I promptly cracked at the pinch bolts thanks to some ham-fisted Allen key action.

SRAM’s X9 gearing felt like a revelation for someone who was used to Shimano shifters, though the double front set-up would often drop the chain at the worst moments — something that wasn’t helped by the limp Blackspire Stinger chain tensioner.

That same tensioner would also pivot around the bottom bracket and hold the chain ransom against the frame should you case a jump — not my favourite bit of kit.

I remember the Avid Juicy brakes performed nicely but were a real pain to work on and the exposed bite point adjusters would snap off at your first OTB moment.

I can’t quite remember why I sold the Enduro but I definitely shouldn’t have. I’d fitted a pair of flat pedals from Funn, which featured a tiny bit of 3M tape in the centre of the platform and that was enough to get the failed skater in me excited enough to buy them.

No matter how many stickers I applied it was never an SX Trail
No matter how many stickers I applied it was never an SX Trail

I remember being gutted when Specialized quickly superseded these bikes with the uglier, less likeable 2007 Enduro with its silly own-brand fork. I wonder, where this bike is now? I'd love to have another go. As dated as it is, I bet it still rides great. *heads on over to eBay*.

That's enough about me, Over To You. What were you riding ten years ago?

Oli Woodman

Section Editor, UK
With more than 10 years of experience riding mountain bikes, Oli knows the good from the bad when it comes to gear. He's a total bike nerd and loves few things more than fettling with spangly riding bits. Also, he seems to have a talent for crashing hard but emerging unscathed.
  • Discipline: Mountain
  • Preferred Terrain: Loamy singletrack
  • Current Bikes: Marin Pine Mountain, Pinnacle Dolomite
  • Dream Bike: Honda RN01
  • Beer of Choice: Corona
  • Location: Bristol, UK

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