So when this bike came out no one seemed to know what to do with it. After putting my butt on it for a few months I’ve got some thoughts on the matter.
This bike is basically a 650B crosscheck optimized for front loading, yeah? The crosscheck is still an amazing do everything bike that I regularly recommend all the time. I would probably recommend the packrat to anyone tall enough to be in the 650B wheelset size frames for sure, die to the slew of new tire options. Is this bike enough of a change to trade in your old cross check? Probably not unless yer that into the #supplelyfe
After riding this bike around, I realized that the reach seems long even for a long torso human like myself. Which leads me to believe this bike would be better suited for flat/sweep bar duty, especially with a load on that 24 pack rack. Admittedly Im not a huge fan of drops to begin with, I still feel this bike would shine with some risers. .
I think as a frame set this would make a sweet swap over from an old cross bike if someone wanted to drop into this new road plus thingy. Besides the wheelset someone could do parts bin build pretty darn easily for this bike, the saving grace of rim brakes in this instance.
I had more critiques on the geo and such but those all seemed to be addressed in the midnight special, so Ill just say I’m excited to ride that at some point. But, if you want an inexpensive do all the damn things bike or a modern but classy 650B rim brake bike that isn’t a noodle then Surly has got ya with the Packrat.