A bike that has gone back to the basics, this steel hardtail from Chumba Cycles is not only a piece of art but a very capable machine. Chumba Cycles was born back in the 90’s as a downhill bike company and has recently gone through a rebrand and new ownership. We think it is for the better, especially for us bikepackers. Chumba Cycles currently has 3 available bike models and, we were excited to test out two of them at the dirt demo in Bootleg Canyon earlier this week. The first was the Stella, a simple and fun hardtail. Chumba Stella Specs The Stella, derived from the latin word star, comes in 3 versions – the Single Speed, XT, and Backcountry. We road the XT model which is built around Shimano XT components. The brakes, shifters, derailleurs, cassette and chain are all of the XT variety, with Race Face Turbine Cranks. The cockpit was outfitted with a Thompson X4 stem, Thompson 730mm carbon flat bars, and a really neat addition, the Thomson Elite dropper post. The wheels are 100% RaceFace turbine, with a front end loaded with a Fox Float 32 100mm. Chumba Stella Geometry The guys at Chumba have a race background, and that passion of riding translated to the XC capability of the frame design. The rear triangle is composed with a special bend that allows traction and compliance, while the larger chainstays make the most of your pedal power. The combination of head tube angle and lower bottom bracket make for a fun ride that will react just the way you need it, when you need it. The adventure in the Stella also shows, with provided rear rack mounts on the seat stays, as well as rear dropouts that allow you to switch to single speed.  Chumba Stella The Ride After riding full suspension bikes or 29+ bikes for the past two days, it was nice to get back on a simple bike.  I was quickly flying up and down the trail, with no remission. Running over rock, through sand, and on some buffed out corners. The stella does it all. The steel frame made for an easy and more plush ride, yet it still felt snappy when it accelerated quickly, a racy feel when needed. The head tube angle was perfect for trustworthy cornering without triggering the brake levers.  Chumba Stella Bikepacker Friendly? The Chumba brand firmly stamps their name in the adventure cycling arena with their bikes. More companies are providing custom bikepacking bags along with their models. The Stella Backcountry version is outfitted with bags from Wanderlust Gear, out of Virginia. Along with their rear rack mounts and frame cage mounts, The Chumba Stella is ready for a singletrack bikepacking excursion. Chumba Stella Stella SS MSRP: $3,245 Stella XT MSRP: $3,595  

2 Comments

  1. Did the Chumba guys hint at any Full Sus bikes coming back into the range? I’m pretty intrigued by these new models, but am really look for some squish to take the sting out and not beat me up as much as a HT does (steel or not…)

    • Neil Beltchenko
      Neil Beltchenko

      Jon,

      There is some exciting news coming from in the next few months, but they are still trying to rebrand Chumba. That being said it takes time to figure things out and they don’t want to sacrifice what they already have going. These guys are super passionate, and excited for the future, starting with their fat bike release.

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