People often call the Surly Long Haul Trucker ugly, due to its sage green powdercoat finish. Nonsense. There's nothing stopping anyone from making the LHT into a beautiful classic touring bike: the green is a nice, natural lichen-like color, the welds are clean and minimalist, and the geometry and styling is time-proven Loaded Touring. And silver components tend to bring out the grey tone in the paint very nicely.

My LHT is primarily a commuting bike, and the touring geometry is ideal for my current 55 km daily roundtrip. I've ridden mine about 8,000 km since I built it a year ago (July 2004), and I'm very pleased with it. The ride is very comfortable due to the long wheelbase, the handling is responsive but stable, and it's very easy to achieve a comfortable, high-handlebars riding position. It's the most comfortable bike I've ever owned, and the guys at Surly deserve to get rich off it.

What else? 48cm Nitto Noodle bars, shellacked natural cork ribbon, generic stem, custom headset spacer, Sugino AT cranks 26/36/48, 12-25 cassette, Deore LX 36H hubs, Mavic T520 rims, Wellgo 98A pedals, Brooks B17, ALE chromed bottle cages, Suntour XC Pro front derailleur, old Deore XT rear. The photos show cyclocross interrupter levers on the bars, but I took them off after a few months. I'm now using the Tektro Ergo-style brake levers, which are much more comfortable than the Shimanos I started out with. And tires are now Schwalbe Marathon Slick 700x30s (true width 30mm).

Murray in Victoria, BC.


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