Advocate Cycles “Hayduke” Bike Review

100% of profit for Advocacy. Because bikes.


Let’s get right down to it.

First of all, everyone and anyone who claims to give a shit about the cycling community in the United States should know about Advocate Cycles. Based out of Minnesota, they are “. . .a bike company that exists solely to create innovative bicycles and deliver 100% of profits from the company back to cycling advocacy efforts.” If that doesn’t stir something in your loins, then I can’t be your friend. What that statement above means, basically, is that after assessing their profits from the previous year, they donate the maximum amount allowed by the IRS to various cycling non-profit and advocacy groups in and around the United States. Whatever is left over from that will ultimately be rolled over into their own advocacy programs the following calendar year. They aren’t a non-profit, but a for-profit with a big damn heart. They are the opposite of almost every single bicycle company I’ve ever heard of. And their bikes kick ass too.

The Bike

The Hayduke frame was born and bred to please. Available in either Reynolds 725 chromoly or double-butted 3/2.5 titanium, it can be run in all of my favorite configurations, which is whatever the hell I want. You want a 29er? It can do that. Maybe 27.5+ with a couple of fatties is your thing? It can do that, too. Want to set it up with a 142mm or 148mm rear hub, geared, single speed, rigid or with a suspension fork? Dropper post? It accommodates them all.

The build I spent my day on was outfitted to the same spec listed for the complete available on their website. I’ll tell you that the whole package handled incredibly well during the entirety of my 30 mile test-ride-turned-love-affair. The only thing I would have changed is the addition of a dropper post and an extra-large frame rather than the large I took off on. At a leggy 6’3″ the large frame didn’t allow for enough room to execute an efficient pedal stroke. A fact I was already prepared for, but even with that being the case, it was one of the best days I’ve had on any bike in a very long time.

The Ride

About 37 miles east of Hood River, OR is the Deschutes River State Recreation Area Campground. It’s also where you’ll find the trailhead to the Lower Deschutes River Trail. A roughly 30 mile out and back ride along the Deschutes River on a path that was historically traveled by train rather than on foot or by bicycle. For the most part it’s a mellow trip over gravel and loose rock. As you reach the turnaround point you may have the opportunity to ride across a few washouts and rock slides as I did to snap you out of your blissful haze, but generally speaking, it’s fairly easy going. The trail follows the eastern bank of the Deschutes south through Allen Canyon on the way to the long abandoned Harris Ranch and beyond, which along with the river running just below you, is the real attraction. It seemed like a perfect ride to break up the jitters of our annual “February Fakeout” here in the Northwest and spend a day in the saddle testing out a bike I seemed to fall in love with as soon as I set on eyes on it. I was seriously stupid with smit and I truly couldn’t wait to get out and put a small pile of miles on that thing.

Somewhere around the three mile marker I realized I had been smiling uncontrollably since not far past the parking lot at the trailhead. I found myself bunny-hopping over sticks along the path and pedaling with childlike abandon through any and every puddle left over from the recent heavy rain that I could find. At around mile twelve or thirteen I reached the old ranch and stopped to stretch my legs. It was then, after getting off of the bike and walking around a bit, that I realized how great this piece of machinery really is. With a longer top tube and slack-ish geometry sitting up on the Reba fork and a pair of juicy 3.5″ Fat B Nimbles it had proven itself to be a very comfortable beast. I examined the frame and the versatility of the build and started to put the pieces together. I have a set of 29er wheels and tires just sort of hanging out waiting to be ridden but with no horse to mount them to, as well as a few singlespeed knick-knacks kicking around my parts bin . . . I began mumbling to myself as my thoughts quickened.

As I continued looking the bike over I was finding ways to not only use the parts I already had on hand from a collection of retired bikes, but also finding ways to integrate other components needed for other types of riding I’ve been preparing to pursue in the coming months. Then it hit me – “Holy shit, this bike can do everything!”

After the ranch I headed further down the trail until my water supply told me it was time to turn around and call it a day. The rest of the ride back to the truck was just as enjoyable as the first half. I almost felt guilty for not spending even more time in the saddle. I didn’t want to get off the bike at all! Just like I don’t want to give it back. But this is the kind of love that needs to be shared.

Head on over to Advocate Cycles’ website to read more about what they’re all about, check out their lineup, and to find out how to get on one yourself. In an industry bent on profit and feeding the bottom line, it’s a breath of fresh air to discover a company like this that’s making worthy equipment for the sole purpose of giving back to the community it came from. When you buy a bike from Advocate Cycles you’re helping to grow and educate the community in ways every cyclist can support.

Why should you buy from Advocacy Cycles?

Because bikes.






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