Looking for a highly capable gravel and bikepacking bike with a titanium frame and compatibility with various wheel sizes? The Salsa Fargo Ti, after an absence from the US company’s 2016 range, is back for 2017 and is designed to tackle the most inhospitable terrain.
First introduced in 2009 the Fargo was ahead of its time, a mountain bike with drop handlebars built around
26in 29in wheels. Since then the whole gravel and adventure category has exploded, and the rise in popularity of bikepacking leading to many bikes capable of tackling all sorts of terrain, from smooth to wild. Tyres are getting wider and there's a growing interest in 650b (27.5in) wheels to allow even more voluminous tyres.
But if the current crop of adventure bikes aren't capable enough for what you have planned, the Fargo Ti might just be. The 2017 version has been updated and now accepts 29in, 29 Plus an 27.5 Plus wheels provide a wide scope of build options depending on the terrain you want to tackle. Plus, in case you're wondering, means tyres up to 3.0in wide! Yes, really. It's like a fat bike on a diet.
The frame is made from 3/2.5 seamless titanium, with custom shaped and triple butted tubes, and features the company’s own Firestarter carbon fibre fork with 15mm thru-axle and post mount disc brake fittings.
The geometry is optimised for a drop handlebar and designed for tackling any sort of terrain you might encounter. It has tweaked the angles and measurements to accommodate a 51mm offset fork - the frame can be used with a 100mm travel suspension fork. The chainstays are shorter and new Alternator dropouts can be split to allow a belt drive to be used.
Titanium has an incredible ride and hits the sweet spot between lightweight, strong, and durable,” said Salsa Engineer Sean Mailen. "Once you fall in love with titanium nothing else can replace it. It’s a frame material I’m happy we are still working with. Titanium has its own unique feel that you just can’t get from any other material.”
Salsa is now distributed in the UK by Raleigh, we’ve contacted them to find out about pricing and availability. In the US the Fargo frameset with fork costs $2499.
David worked on the road.cc tech team from 2012-2020. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds, and you can now find him over on his own YouTube channel David Arthur - Just Ride Bikes.