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First Look: Inside Rocky Mountain and the 2014 Instinct MSL Carbon

<b>Welcome to Vancouver. Rocky Mountain President, Raymond Dutil, performs the ribbon cutting ceremony, BC style.</b>

<b>Shuffle in and take a look at Rocky's new place that puts them a short pedal from the North Shore. Alex Cogger plays tour guide.</b>

<b>From handmade to carbon, Rocky has done it all through the years. The relics around the office really bring us back.</b>

<b>With the help of riders like Wade Simmons, 2001 Rampage Champion and North Shore legend, the company has a rich history in mountain biking.</b>

<b>Essential to making new Rocky bikes possible since 1981.</b>

<b>With Rocky's shift in focus from doing everything in house to concentrating on the R&D side locally, the new facility suits them much better.</b>

<b>Half office, a quarter test lab and a quarter machine shop, there's plenty of space to get things done.</b>

<b>Rocky takes in house testing seriously, both on the trail and off.</b>

<b>Scores of history line the walls, shelves, and racks.</b>

<b>Amidst the very place where future bikes will be born, Rocky introduced us to the 2014 Instinct MSL. Now it's your turn.</b>

<b>Named after its instinctive ability to tame a variety of terrain, this 130mm travel 29er trail bike is suited to just about anything.</b>

<b>MSL = Mountain Super Light. As in light enough to load and unload easily, then pound out the miles. The Instinct frame comes in at 2,350 grams (5.18 pounds) including shock and hardware.</b>

<b>With Wade as our guide, we knew we were in for some fun when we went to try the Instinct out.</b>

<b>SmoothWall carbon construction creates a frame with no deformities and no folds.</b>

<b>Smooth and sleek inside and out, the technique squeezes out as much extra resin (weight) as possible. Note the internal seatpost and cable routing on this rig.</b>

<b>Ruben Salzgeber pedaling up Mount Seymour on one of several prototype Instinct MSL frames tested in the field. Shaka bro.</b>

<b>Rocky knows the small things count, and the Instinct MSL is covered in details like this metal guard should you drop a chain.</b>

<b>As this demo fixture shows, Rocky's SmoothLink suspension design is unaffected while pedaling. The key is the rear pivot placement above the rear axle.</b>

<b>The suspension is designed to provide a pedal platform, supple mid-stroke, and progressive end-stroke.</b>

<b>Rocky's Ride-9 system is an ingenious way of adjusting geometry and suspension characteristics. Nine possible geometry and suspension rate configurations are possible thanks to two interlocking inserts.</b>

<b>Particular riders will appreciate the ability to fine tune the bike, whether you're charging steeps or cruising the smooth stuff.</b>

<b>Wade made quick work of this famous Seymour rock roll. Impressive to say the least, especially when wet. If your daily rides include stuff like this, you'll dig the slack, low, more progressive setting.</b>

<b>All smiles about the Instinct MSL, especially for Rocky Brand Manager Brandon Crichton.</b>

<b>Short for Angular Bushing Concept, ABC pivots use angular contact polymer bushings that are lighter than traditional bearings.</b>

<b>ABC provides a 105% increase in pivot torsional stiffness compared to single bearing design, and the improvement is noticeable on the trail. The Instinct MSL is solid.</b>

<b>Product Manager and trail shredder Ken Perras is pumped that the bikes are easy to maintain, especially when you ride in the wet.</b>

<b>The Instinct 999 MSL has all the trimmings at $7,599.</b>

<b>Our ride for the day was the Instinct 970 MSL. The $5,399 build is hard to fault.</b>

<b>For those looking to tackle the gnar, the Instinct 970 MSL BC Edition fits the bill perfectly.</b>

<b>The BC Edition's spec and tweaked suspension make for one very capable 29er.</b>

<b>Doing our best to keep up with BC Bike Race specialist, Andreas Hesler, aboard the XC, all-mountain, and enduro capable rig.</b>

<b>For us, the BC Edition checks all the boxes.</b>

<b>Cheers to Rocky Mountain, NSMBA, Endless Biking, and a host of others for a rad day on the North Shore!</b>

<b>For more info, visit <u><a href="http://www.bikes.com" target="_blank">www.bikes.com</a></u>. Be sure to also catch the intro video, below.</b>

Travel with us to the North Shore for the unveiling of Rocky Mountain's new office and new bike - the 2014 Instinct MSL. This 130mm travel trail bike was an overnight sensation when it first came to market in aluminum form, and has only gotten better with the move to carbon.

Clockwise, the Instinct 970 MSL BC Edition, 999 MSL, 970 MSL, and 950 MSL add to the Instinct range. Whether it's a day exploring the Shore, an epic adventure, hard hitting enduro race, or an after work ride with the crew, the Instinct MSL will likely do the trick. We're impressed by Rocky's latest ride and the continued progression and refinement of their craft.

Join Wade Simmons and crew for another look at the Instinct MSL in this intro video:





Photos by Margus Riga, Brendon Purdy, and Brandon Turman - www.bikes.com

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