The In-depth review can now be found here. 

With only a handful of manufactures trying their hand at the mid-fat 29+ bikes, we made it a priority to check out the rookies in the game. Like we mentioned in our first look of the Stella, Chumba USA is getting an overhaul. The company is comprised of an eager owner and a small team to make quality backcountry bikes that are made here in the USA.  Chumba Ursa Back in 1993, Ted Tanouye started Chumba Cycles, his goal was to build top of the line small batch bikes in the United States. His team of racers showcased how capable his bikes were and Chumba racing was introduced. Chumba was then known for their burley tubesets and immaculate welds. In the 2000’s the brand changed ownership and so did their vision. In 2013 Chumba was reinvented and Aaron Foreman decided to maintain the original roots of the brand. Chumba moved operations from California to Austin, Texas, where they do all their fabrication in house. Their headquarters is host to a showroom including a frame building shop and even a demo center. Chumba welcomes visitors with open arms to stop on by and check out their new digs.  IMG_5716 Specs Chumba USA went with a Shimano driver, XT rear and front derailluer, shifters, cassette, and chain, along with a RaceFace Respond 2X crankset. The Backcountry Ursa is stocked with Avid BB7 mechanical brakes with 200mm rotors. XT Brakes come stock on the Chumb Ursa XT. We tested the Ursa with a Surly Crom-Moly fork, but the Ursa is available with the Whiskey No. 9 Carbon Fork. A Hope X2 Evo was laced to 29+ Surly Rabbit Hole rims and the new Maxxis Chronicle tires. Thompson’s 750mm carbon bars, stem, and seat post round out the Ursa. Chumba Ursa Geometry The Ursa was built around a long wheelbase, the longer chainstays do just that providing a stable and comfortable ride. Combined with a steeper head tube the bike is made to tackle long dirt roads, rocky singletrack and everything inbetween.  Sticking with the industry trend, Chumba went with a shorter stem and longer bars for comfortable control. Oversize head tube, rear thru axel and adjustable dropouts all come stock on the bike.  Chumba Ursa The Ride Right after I played around with the Chumba Stella, I got on the Ursa. Instantly I noticed a longer bike, not so much in the reach, just in the wheel base. It felt stable, but still relatively nimble for a 29+. The bike wanted to climb, whether it was in sand or loose rock. It could handle it all, at a relatively fast pace as well. Once I made it to the top of the climb, and after I adjusted my break lever reach on the BB7s, I enjoyed a pretty gnarly descent. At times I had to remember I was on a bike with no suspension. The bike sucked up big rocks without effort. It crushed sections of rolling technical rock drops where I would have gone head over heals on a 26” bike. The overall ride was one of the most memorable at the Dirt Demo.  Chumba Ursa Bikepacker Friendly? The Chumba Ursa was designed for adventure.  This bike would suit bikepackers looking to ride in all styles of terrain. The Ursa is available in a backcountry version which makes it that much more appealing – included is a Wanderlust Gear frame bag and Avid BB7 mechanical brakes. The bike comes with a fork that has rack mounts, also installed are rack mounts on the seat stays. A company that has taken downhill industry standards and translated them to their backcountry bikes sure makes for a reliable bikepacking rig. Chumba Ursa Ursa Backcountry MSRP $3,595 (tested) Ursa XT MSRP $3,495 Ursa SS MSRP $3,195

3 Comments

  1. Pingback: A Wanderlust Gear Bag Set Review - Bikepackers Magazine

  2. Nice info! Really seems like a solid setup. How would you compare this to the Jones Plus?

  3. Pingback: Review: Chumba Cycles Ursa - Bikepackers Magazine

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