ContentsQUICK ANSWER – THE BEST WOMEN’S MOUNTAIN BIKESCOMPARISON TABLE – THE BEST WOMEN’S MOUNTAIN BIKESWOMEN’S MOUNTAIN BIKES REVIEWSDIAMONDBACK OVERDRIVE GMC TOPKICKRALEIGH BIKES EVA 2 WOMEN’SDIAMONDBACK BICYCLES LUX WOMEN’SCO-OP CYCLES DRT 1.2WCANNONDALE HABIT CARBON/ALLOYGHOST LANAO FS 7.7HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST WOMEN’S MOUNTAIN BIKESRIDING STYLETYPES OF MOUNTAIN BIKESTRAIL BIKESCROSS-COUNTRY BIKESALL-MOUNTAIN/ENDURO BIKESGRAVITY/DOWNHILL BIKESFAT TIRE BIKESSUSPENSION AND SHOCKSWHEEL SIZEBRAKE SYSTEMSADDLE SIZEWOMEN’S BIKES FOR MENTHE COMPANY YOU KEEP If you want to get faster, what’s better than a new bike? Most bikes are unisex, but some riders prefer a woman-specific style. These bikes have smaller wheelbases and a shorter top tube. Most importantly, the best women’s mountain bikes are light, strong and responsive. Women’s bikes once had lower top tubes which were designed for skirts. Modern bike design instead now follows physical proportions. Women-specific bikes may fit anyone with shorter reach or longer legs. Other bikes retain unisex frames but use customized handlebars, shifters and breaks designed for smaller hands. Different riding styles demand different bikes. Daredevils need full-suspension gravity bikes for descending. Trail riders will need lighter, quicker bikes, leaning towards hardtails and cyclocross bikes. Here at The Adventure Junkies, our goal is to help riders find the best gear for their passions. Whichever style you like, we’ll help you get on a bike and onto the trail. For more of our top mountain bike gear recommendations, check out these popular articles: Men’s Bikes | Women’s Bikes Pedals | Wheels | Tires | Brakes | Saddles Chains | Cranksets | Derailleurs | Gear Shifters Helmets | Lights | Computers | GPS | Pumps Shorts | Jackets | Shoes | Gloves LOOKING FOR A GIFT FOR AFELLOW BIKER?Check out our gift guide that includes 100 ideas to surprise your biking friends.From big ticket presents to stocking stuffers, there is something for everyone. VIEW NOW QUICK ANSWER – THE BEST WOMEN’S MOUNTAIN BIKES 1. DIAMONDBACK OVERDRIVE VIEW AT AMAZON 2. GMC TOPKICK VIEW AT AMAZON 3. RALEIGH BIKES EVA 2 VIEW AT AMAZON 4. DIAMONDBACK BICYCLES LUX VIEW AT AMAZON 5. CO-OP CYCLES DRT 1.2W VIEW AT REI 6. CANNONDALE HABIT CARBON/ALLOY VIEW AT REI 7. GHOST LANAO FS 7.7 VIEW AT REI COMPARISON TABLE – THE BEST WOMEN’S MOUNTAIN BIKES PICTUREWOMEN'S MOUNTAIN BIKESBEST USEWHEEL SIZEWEIGHTPRICE PICTUREWOMEN'S MOUNTAIN BIKESBEST USEWHEEL SIZEWEIGHTPRICE Diamondback OverdriveTrail29 in32.0 lb$$ GMC TopkickDual-Suspension26 in29.0 lb$ Raleigh Bikes Eva 2 Women'sBudget27.5 in30.0 lb$ Diamondback Bicycles Lux Women'sBudget27.5 in31.0 lb$$ Co-op Cycles DRT 1.2WTrail27.5 in30.4 lb$$ Cannondale Habit Carbon AlloyGravity27.5 in28.7 lb$$$$ Ghost Lanao FS 7.7Gravity27.5 in28.7 lb$$$ WOMEN’S MOUNTAIN BIKES REVIEWS DIAMONDBACK OVERDRIVE Check out the latest price on: Amazon BEST FOR: Beginner trail riding on a reliable budget bike WHEEL SIZE: 29 in WEIGHT: 32.0 lb PROS: Price CONS: No lockout for suspension, weight GMC TOPKICK Check out the latest price on: Amazon BEST FOR: Versatile riding on a simple dual-suspension setup WHEEL SIZE: 26 in WEIGHT: 29.0 lb PROS: Price, versatility CONS: Weight, component quality RALEIGH BIKES EVA 2 WOMEN’S Check out the latest price on: Amazon BEST FOR: Beginner riding on a budget-friendly trail bike WHEEL SIZE: 27.5 in WEIGHT: 30.0 lb PROS: Price, ease of use CONS: Weight, no disc brakes, component quality DIAMONDBACK BICYCLES LUX WOMEN’S Check out the latest price on: Amazon BEST FOR: Nimble trail riding on a budget WHEEL SIZE: 27.5 in WEIGHT: 31.0 lb PROS: Price, geometry, design CONS: Weight, component quality CO-OP CYCLES DRT 1.2W Check out the latest price on: REI BEST FOR: Women riders looking for a trail bike designed for their geometry WHEEL SIZE: 27.5 in WEIGHT: 30.4 lbs PROS: Price, geometry, performance CONS: Weight CANNONDALE HABIT CARBON/ALLOY Check out the latest price on: REI BEST FOR: Women riders who rip on the trail and cross country WHEEL SIZE: 27.5 in WEIGHT: 28.7 lbs PROS: Weight, versatility, geometry CONS: Price GHOST LANAO FS 7.7 Check out the latest price on: REI BEST FOR: Riders looking for an all-around full suspension bike WHEEL SIZE: 27.5 in WEIGHT: 30.2lbs PROS: Unique rear suspension, geometry, handling CONS: Price Gear up for mountain biking, without breaking the bankGet the Latest Deals on MTB GearSent right to your inbox...GEAR UP FOR MTB HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST WOMEN’S MOUNTAIN BIKES RIDING STYLE Where and how do you want to ride? Many riders will be content with a versatile bike that fits most situations. Others need a particular machine, prioritizing speed or stability for their style. Most beginners will be happy with either a trail or all-mountain bike. TYPES OF MOUNTAIN BIKES There are five main types of mountain bikes, briefly explained below. Bram Reusen details mountain bike types in an earlier The Adventure Junkies article. TRAIL BIKES Trail bikes vary, but generally have front suspension and a rigid rear post. The industry-wide term is hardtails, and they’re usually light and stiff. The best ones are fast and agile, and they are popular with both casual riders and serious trail riders. CROSS-COUNTRY BIKES Cross-country bikes, also known as XC bikes, share features of trail bikes. They tend to be lighter and faster, and have smaller, tighter angles. The design makes them more aggressive and snappier, and they excel as racing bikes. ALL-MOUNTAIN/ENDURO BIKES If the XC bike is a smaller, nimbler trail bike, an all-mountain bike is a modification in the opposite direction. All-mountain bikes have sturdier frames, full suspension, and a wide range of gears. They’re the bike of choice for hardcore off-road riders. GRAVITY/DOWNHILL BIKES Gravity is the new marketing term for downhill bikes. This encompasses a class of heavier, sturdier bikes designed for extreme downhill rides. They maneuver well on downhills and are great for riders who like descents that they won’t climb. FAT TIRE BIKES This last class of bike is a bit of a fad, but one that seems to be sticking. Giant, oversized tires make for great sand or snow riding, and work in mud, too. Bikepackers favor them for multi-day off-road adventures. SUSPENSION AND SHOCKS You already will have some idea what you need after reviewing the list above. The choice boils down to full suspension, front suspension, or no suspension. Front suspension bikes, hardtails, tend to be cheaper and lighter than full suspension. Full suspensions are more comfortable, but heavier and pricier. No suspension bikes are usually only found in fat tire bikes, which use tires for cushions. Suspension lockout is a great feature which selectively disables the suspension mid-ride. You’ll want this if you plan to ride on pavement or steep ascents. WHEEL SIZE All mountain bikes once had 26″ wheels, a standard copied from the first mountain bikes. One of the early inventors of the mountain bike, Gary Fisher, pioneered a larger and faster 29″ wheel. According to BikeRadar, though, neither size was perfect, leading to a compromise in the 27.5″ tire. Many women-specific bikes use 26″ wheels because they are designed for shorter riders. Taller riders can ride bigger wheels, but may still prefer 26″ wheels. The smaller wheels are stronger, more durable, and handle better. Right down the middle, the 27.5″ wheel has become the de facto standard. They are the most common type of wheel, followed closely by 29,” with 26″ wheels becoming rarer. BRAKE SYSTEM Nearly every modern mountain bike is made with disc brakes, either mechanical or hydraulic. We’ve examined the different types of brakes in a previous article, MTB Brakes 101, and concluded that hydraulic disc brakes are best for most riders. Mechanical disc brakes work fine and may be better for riders who brave sub-freezing temperatures. The one main drawback of hydraulic brakes is that they work via fluid dynamics, and the liquid may freeze. SADDLE SIZE Men and women use different saddles, and many women find that unisex or male frames work fine with a different saddle. If you find that the size and geometry of a frame are perfect, but the saddle isn’t, see Alex Borgen’s MTB Saddles 101 which was previously published here at The Adventure Junkies. WOMEN’S BIKES FOR MEN According to Bicycling, men should be open to riding women’s bikes. You may have to swap out the saddle, but if you’re not comfortable on a man’s bike sized to you, it’s worth trying out a woman’s bike. Women’s bikes are largely defined by simple, minor changes to geometry and function, and these changes can make biking better for anyone with shorter arms or longer legs. THE COMPANY YOU KEEP Chances are you aren’t just riding solo. Maybe it’s a local racing group or just your pals, but you probably want a bike that will complement the group’s riding style and keep everyone together. MOUNTAIN BIKING RESOURCESTABLE OF CONTENTSMOUNTAIN BIKINGTABLE OF CONTENTS 1. MTB BASICS 4. MTB MAINTENANCE 2. MTB CLOTHING 5. MTB SKILLS 3. MTB EQUIPMENT 6. MTB TRAINING 1. MTB BASICS 2. MTB CLOTHING 3. MTB EQUIPMENT 4. MTB MAINTENANCE 5. MTB SKILLS 6. MTB TRAINING Disclosure: The Adventure Junkies is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission at no extra cost for you. We also use other affiliate programs like REI, LeisurePro, Diviac and Liveaboard.com.