Not quite in time to get wrapped under the tree, but Salsa Cycles has a sweet looking pair of Timberjack mountain bikes to get your kids out on the trail in the new year. Doing what Salsa does best, the Timberjack 20 & 24 pair lightweight aluminum frames & matching alloy forks, with clearance for big trail bump-eating 3″ tires, disc brakes & worry-free 1x drivetrains. And they do it all at a price that won’t break the bank.
Salsa sees the virtue of building lifelong cyclists early, and the Timberjacks are all about instilling a sense of adventure. While most 20″ kids’ mountain bikes stay pretty basic, Salsa thought to give a bit more versatility.
First that meant opting for meaty 3″ plus-sized tires, that soften the ride without the need for hefty suspension. Then the bike goes with Boost hub spacing and a narrow-wide single ring drivetrain to give junior the best tech. And no lack of water bottle storage for this kiddo, the Timberjack has anything cage mounts on both fork legs. So mount a couple of wager bottle cages up, or well… anything.
Of course at the $550 pricepoint of this orange Timberjack 20, you won’t get a super high-end groupset. But Salsa managed a wide-enough twist shift Shimano Altus 8 speed derailleur on a 12-32 cassette, and Promax cable actuated disc brakes with 160 front & 140mm rear rotors.
Timberjack 24 aluminum kids’ mountain bike
The 24″ version shares the same spec in bright blue for $560. That includes the same Promax & Velo finishing kit that like the geometry of both bikes is sized down to fit smaller riders.
Both bikes are 1x specific (so no accommodation for a front derailleur) and get internal routing in the front triangle to get cables out of the way. Both also spec a 28T chainring with a plate style chain guard, but can fit up to a 30T ring if you kid needs some more speed.
The bikes do stick with standard threaded bottom brackets, IS brake tabs, and QR axles (although specs mention bolt-on axles). Wheels on both bikes use 32 spoke formula hubs and 20″ or 24″ versions of WTB’s i35 rims, suggesting both tubeless compatibility & their wide, stable 35mm internal profile.
The bigger wheeled Timberjack 24 adds a single downtube set of bosses, plus the fork mounts. Its rigid fork is also suspension corrected, meaning you could swap in an 80mm travel fork if your kid starts to get too rad with the full rigid setup.
Salsa says the little Timberjacks are ready for “family camping, solo expeditions in the nearby woods, or any other youthful mission”. Get one from your local Salsa dealer from the first weeks in January 2018.