One more chance: OPEN × Rene Herse U.P.P.E.R.

Posted by: Jan Heine Category: Uncategorized

One more chance: OPEN × Rene Herse U.P.P.E.R.

If you missed out on the original pre-order of the OPEN × Rene Herse U.P.P.E.R., here’s one more chance: We made a few extra, and so there is a very limited number of frames that are ready to ship. These will go quickly, and then there will be no more—except on the road, of course, where these bikes belong. Since I got mine, I’ve been riding it more than all my other bikes, even though it’s winter in Seattle, and I have fendered bikes for rainy days.

Why am I so excited about the U.P.P.E.R.? After all, there are newer gravel bikes out there, some with more tire clearance, others with more eyelets for attaching bikepacking bags, with internal storage and other cool features? Why I love the U.P.P.E.R. is simple: No other bike does as good a job to translate road bike feel into wide-tire, all-road capability. My U.P.P.E.R. is lighter, shorter and more nimble than the new generation of 700C-optimized bikes. It feels like a road bike even when I’m racing along twisty gravel paths. It’s exactly what we had in mind when we coined the term ‘all-road bike’ way back in 2006.

If you want to run 29er mountain bike wheels on your gravel bike (and don’t mind the wide Q factor that this requires), or if you plan a week-long bikepacking trip, this isn’t the bike you want. The U.P.P.E.R. is the bike that will replace your road bike, because it provides more speed and more comfort on the roads that are the most fun: Those meandering strips of asphalt or gravel that see little traffic and almost no maintenance. Where the tree canopies touch above the road surface, where every corner brings a smile on your face, and where your bike and body breathe with the undulations of the road surface. But if you are on 28 mm tires, these are also the roads where you grit your teeth and suddenly remember the smooth pavement of the busy highway just over the hill.

By eschewing the extremes, this is the bike for 90% of my rides, whether fast or slow. As the industry splits bikes into adventure machines on the one hand and pure road bikes on the other, this type of bike is becoming rare again. I love mine, and I’m glad we’re able to share that love with those who want something similar.

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