(Courtesy the Companies)
2021 Winter Buyer’s Guide

The Best Winter Bikes of 2021

Three smart tickets to winter riding fun

Courtesy the Companies

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Salsa Stormchaser ($1,499)

(Courtesy Salsa)

Best for All-Weather Gravel Grinding and Commuting 

The Stormchaser is for those who believe there’s no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable equipment. Its single-speed drivetrain won’t fail in sloppy conditions, and ­stainless-steel plates on the fork and chainstays shield against damage from mud-caked tires. Install a set of fenders—and a 1x drivetrain if your commute has bigger climbs—and you have a speedy rig for commuting all year.

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Wahoo Kickr Bike ($3,500)

(Courtesy Wahoo)

Best for Indoor Training

There’s a reason it costs a grand more than a Peloton: in the growing field of smart bikes, Wahoo’s Kickr Bike stands out for its seamless integration with popular indoor-training apps like Zwift, customizable gearing, and simulated shifting. It automatically adjusts the pedaling resistance to match virtual peaks and valleys. The physical angle of the bike also changes, tilting up and down as you climb and descend to mimic real-world riding. The Kickr Bike is much quieter and, with its large tripod base, more stable than any other smart trainer we’ve tested. The fit is incredibly easy to adjust, too—a big selling point if your household has more than one cyclist. Wahoo’s user-friendly app even lets riders configure the shift levers to replicate the button function of their preferred drivetrain—Shimano, SRAM, or Campagnolo. Those who train regularly indoors will be hard pressed to find anything this engaging.

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Trek Farley 9.6 ($3,300)

(Courtesy Trek)

Best for Snowy Trails

Trek’s Farley family packs a lot of value into four-season fat bikes with a curated mix of components. The 9.6 is our pick for its light carbon frame and fork, reliable SRAM 1×12 drivetrain, and high-volume 27.5×4.5-inch tires, which enable more momentum and better traction on snow than their 26-inch counterparts. With a ­tubeless-ready setup for flat protection, it weighs 27.5 pounds, which is light for the category.

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From Winter 2021 Buyer’s Guide Lead Photo: Courtesy the Companies

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