Originally Posted by GoThere@50
And that's a good thing! I'm sure if you tried to ride the explorer like you would an EXC or WR you would find it disappointing. Ride it like a trials bike, enjoy the extended range, comfort and versatility and you might find slow speed technical trail nirvana. Admittedly a niche bike for a niche market, but can you think of a better technical terrain tool? Assuming the rider is willing to adapt his or her riding style to trials skill sets. That's a challenge I would find exciting.
A WR or EXC will do amazing things under someone with a real trials skillset - that they learned on a trials bike, in real competition where rules apply and you are being observed and scored. Anyone from Malcolm SMith to Guy Cooper to Jeremy McGrath to David Knight to Taddy Blazuziak
will tell you the same thing. While most are very good on a trials bike, they all saw early on that it helped with all of their other skills that they used as professionals.
I applaud the concept but I think it is being mispercieved as the "perfect blend" - all of the marketing videos show riders with excellent trials skillsets, riding it like a trials bike...they could get on many other bikes and ride the same terrain just as well, I promise you. They are taking a trials bike and making an enduro bike out of it and benefitting from that heritage, but it is still a small motorcycle with relatively fragile suspension and the pegs are set very rearward and the head angle is very steep. It will be a handfull in any sort of sand or soft terrrain...not unrideable, but also not easy at all.
Lastly, is that most people don't realize that the steering sweep of a trials bike means that when you are seated on something like the Ossa Explorer, the handlebar will actually contact your leg and "pinch" it between the bar and the chassis at either side of full-lock. Not to mention, if you ever hit something that the suspension can't eat and/or wheel won't roll over head on with the front wheel steered slightly off-center, you'll find yourself with the handlebar in your thigh or stomach. Ask me how I know, I have pictures of the hematomas to prove it. Yes, Ihave abused my trials bike but it abused me back...
Again, it will work fine for what most people that want to learn technical riding, but they'd be just as better off getting a trials bike and buying the skillsets with practice and competition and then take those to their "big" bikes. JMO, though...to each his own.