The past three years has been made up of a few eccentric people that had a passion for the 29″ wheel and a whole lot of doubters. While the masses started to switch their frame of mind and correct the stigma of a bigger wheel recently the shame of being different was still disseminated widely. Over the past 6 months or so we seem to have hit a tipping point where we as a society have finally accepted the 29″ wheel into our daily life, it is no longer a proper custom to discriminate from those that are different among us.
Here is a short quote from Dirt Magazine and one of their 26″ believers. Have a read for yourself.
Three weeks into riding 29ers I no longer sign up to the theory that 26 bikes offer great agility either. In fact I now find them more nervous and slower. For me it clicked on the Norco Shinobi amongst tight flat rooty corners, the place where I had previously been totally struggling to get any kind of timing and flow. Within a few turns and a change of style I found myself leaning, attacking and pulling away from my riding friend who shares similar speed. It was simply a moment of clarity, in an instant manualling, pumping the ground, confident and fully coherent of the timing required. In the mud the bigger wheel size translates to more control during the slide and certainly increased traction.