BEST FOR: Challenging, technical days. THE TEST: The 26-inch Lush is stable, agile, and fun on bouldery descents but still cranks through climbs. The aluminum Lush has the same travel as the Spark (4.7 inches front and rear), but feels bigger and cushier—more rock crawler than speed demon. That’s because Trek moved the rear linkage down and steepened the seat tube for a low center of gravity that keeps riders squarely over the bike. It was so deft on technical trails that it turned one 29er evangelist back to small wheels. “I had control and confidence descending terrain that I’d usually walk,” she said. THE VERDICT: It’ll make you a better rider. 28.5 lbs
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