Designed with off-road riding front of mind, the 650b WTB Sendero blurs the lines between gravel riding and mountain biking as an aggressive gravel tyre available for 650b wheels only.
The tyre performs just as you’d expect, with the deep, aggressive knobs providing excellent grip on techy trails at the cost of rolling resistance on the road.
It’s a gravel tyre for riders whose drop-bar excursions take place almost exclusively off-road, on terrain where grip is at a premium.
WTB Sendero specifications and details
Available in a 47mm width for 650b wheels, the Sendero is a wide, aggressively treaded gravel tyre for tackling technical terrain.
At first glance, it looks much more like a mountain bike tyre than a gravel tyre, with high-profile, widely spaced knobs. These are concentrated along the centre line and on the shoulders, with fewer knobs in between to aid mud shedding.
All of these knobs are siped, either with horizontal or vertical grooves to boost traction in wet conditions.
I’ve tested the standard 60 TPI option, though there is an SG2 alternative with additional puncture protection insert and 120 TPI tyre casing.
At 569g per tyre, the Sendero is, as you’d expect, heftier than a more conventional and narrower gravel tyre.
WTB Sendero performance
Tubeless setup of the WTB Sendero tyres is fairly straightforward, though I did need to use a tubeless pump with pressurised gas to inflate. On the other hand, the Teravail Rutland and Maxxis Ravager tyres I’ve also had on test recently could be installed using only a track pump.
The Senderos inflated to a plump 46mm width initially, which later expanded to 47mm after a few rides.
With such an aggressive tread on this wide tyre, the Senderos transform your bike into a little cross-country rig that’s ready to tackle rougher rocks, rootier trails and rutted tracks.
Featuring widely spaced knobs, the mud-shedding ability of the Sendero tyre is very impressive.
The WTB Senderos belong in the same class of gravel riding as dropper posts, wide bars and slack head-tube angles.
In other words, they’re designed for riders who stick predominantly to off-road tracks and like to push the limits of what’s possible on drop bars.
If, however, your riding involves any significant amount of road, the Senderos probably won’t be for you.
The flip side of the superb off-road grip is additional drag on the road, and they did feel disconcertingly squirmy when cornering on tarmac at lower tyre pressures.
Keeping pressure in the tyres was also a bit of an issue. They needed reinflating before every use, and some evidence of sealant seepage was visible across the tread after only a few rides.
When it came to taking the tyres off, removal required a lot more elbow grease (or should that be thumb grease?) than other tyres. That’s not so bad at home or in the workshop, but it could be a tricky one at the trailside.
WTB Sendero bottom line
The WTB Sendero tyres won’t be for everyone, but for riders who love mucky, technical terrain, and have the frame clearance to fit them, they will allow you to test the limits of your gravel bike.
However, I’d opt for WTB’s SG2 option over this standard spec, for the 120 TPI casing and additional puncture protection.
|Price||AUD $66.00EUR €58.00GBP £50.00USD $66.00|
|Weight||569g (650b x 47) – 568g claimed|
|Features||Colour: Black or tan* sidewall options
Tyre: Tubeless compatible
|Puncture protection||Standard* or SG2 puncture protection (*as tested)|
|Sizes||650b x 47|