A year a half ago Bombtrack widened their do-it-all cross & gravel Hook to create a 650b+ bikepacking bike rolling on 2.1″ mountain bike tires. Joachim Rosenlund rode that steel bike to a record time on the 700km Torino-Nice Rally in 2016, and wanted more. So Bombtrack built the full carbon Hook EXT-C – lighter, stiffer, and an all around quicker ride for Joachim to take on the next adventure – the Scottish self-supported Highland Trail 550 race.
Highland Trail 550 on the Hook EXT-C
For someone who is used to these epic multi-day bikepacking races, we wouldn’t have guessed that the 885km/550mi of the Highland Trail 550 would prove so tough to him on the new bike. But besides being beaten by rocky technical terrain, and as many hike-a-bike descents as climbs, the brutal weather also took its toll. Even then, Joachim talked to us about the friendly fellowship of competitors that helped motivate him on, even finishing two days behind the fastest rider. And that will probably draw him back to the race again, once he forgets some of the suffering from those 5 days & 18 hours.
After you watch the video documenting the trip, read Joachim’s full write-up of the adventure over at Bombtrack.com. Now onto the new bike, which you can get now…
Hook EXT-C full carbon bikepacking mountain bike
The 3000€/$3450 full carbon Hook EXT-C is an all new bike, building on the success of its steel predecessor. Bombtrack still considers it one of their cross & gravel bikes, and calls it a 650b bike even though it fully embraces its proper 2.1″ WTB Nano mountain bike tires. The new frame and fork were both optimized to now clear up to a 27.5 x 2.2″ mountain or 700c x 52mm gravel tire.
The new carbon bike gets lightly revised geometry over the steel bike, with a slightly shorter reach and higher stack across most sizes for a more comfortable fit. Interestingly, the new carbon frameset is also offered in three more sizes, up to a wide seven size range from XXS-XXL.
Tech detail updates
The bike also gets an all-new tapered 1.5″ steerer, monocoque full carbon fork with a 12x100mm thru-axle and flat mount disc brakes that matches the frame’s clearance for 2.2″ tires. The fork offers about as much versatility as you can find for a carbon bikepacking build, including both eyelets for full coverage fenders and a 3-bolt anything cage mount on each fork leg.
That same new fork is also now available on the updated 2400€ steel Hook EXT.
Both the complete EXT-C and the steel EXT builds feature SRAM Rival 1 x 11 drivetrains. But the new carbon frame & updated steel frame (thanks to a new chainstay yoke) also can be built up separately as double builds, with clearance for a 36t small and 46t big ring.
The mixed T600/T800 carbon Hook EXT-C includes modular (& Di2 ready) internal routing, three sets of frame water bottle bosses, rack and/or fender mounts on the seatstays, and a press fit BB30 bottom bracket shell.
Bombtrack claims a frame weight of 1245g for a M frame, plus 490g for the uncut fork, with a frameset-only option also available.
Complete bikes are available through Bombtrack dealers with a set of Hunt’s 20mm internal 650b tubeless Adventure Sport Disc wheels, the Rival 1 40T x 11-42 hydraulic groupset, and Bombtrack’s own alloy cockpit components.