Gary Fisher Rumblefish II 29er Quick Review – Interbike 2009

Gary Fisher Rumblefish II 29er Quick Review – Interbike 2009

I had heard a little about the new Gary Fisher Rumblefish from the Fat Cyclist’s post from the Trek Media Camp, so when I got a chance to ride it, I thought I’d give it a whirl to see if my impressions were different than his. After all, he is a leg-shavin’ singlespeed-loving machine and I tend to love the downhill a bit more, so here goes.

About the 2010 Gary Fisher Rumblefish 29er

Built to compete with the other long-er travel full-suspension 29ers on the market, the new Rumblefish sports the typical suspension technology from the Trek/Fisher camp including ABP, G2 Geometry and the proprietary Fox RP23 shock with the descent-loving Dual Rate Control Valve (DRCV).

Rumblefish II Specs:

  • Rear Travel: 110mm via Fox RP23 with DRCV
  • Front Travel: 120mm via Fox F120 FIT RLC with 15QR and tapered steerer
  • Wheels: Bontrager Rhythm Elite 29
  • Drivetrain: Shimano XT/XTR mix
  • Brakes: Avid Elixir R
  • Full Spec: Visit FisherBikes.com
  • MSRP: $3989

Gary Fisher Rumblefish 29er

Gary Fisher Rumblefish II 29er Review

Gary Fisher Rumblefish II 29er Review

2010 Gary Fisher Rumblefish II 29er Quick Review

As the second bike of the day, I had fresh legs, cool temps and mostly uncrowded trails. So, off I went. I’m a big fan of the 29er platform. I can’t say that I subscribe to the philosophy that the 26er will be completely phased out, but lets just say I wouldn’t cry too hard if that ends up being the case.

The Rumblefish is appropriately named in oh so many ways. For one, it’s not the most pleasing on the eyes (just my opinion) and it’s really built to excel on the downhill. I’ll start there. The trails in Bootleg Canyon are rocky, and technical. When I say rocky, I mean a fall will be met with serious carnage. Heading downhill, the Rumblefish felt ultra-stable and smooth. The wheelbase felt a bit long-ish, so handling wasn’t racecar-esque. However, there are few obstacles the Rumblefish can’t rumble through.

The combination of the Fox DRCV with the APB suspension produces downhill fun–no doubt, but what about the uphill?

Glad you asked… well, the uphill is a bit less efficient than I’d like. Not that you’ll be laboring your way up the trail, but you’ll definitely not be the first to the top — lockouts will be your friend. But, that may have been a combination of both the geometry and the meaty tires — hard to tell for sure with only 45 minutes on the bike.

Full-suspension 29er designs have to be precisely executed in order to maintain a lower center-of-gravity. While not being super top-heavy, this bike does feel a bit tall. This “tallness” may raise its head on slow, technical ascents or descents were the propensity of tipping may come into play.

I did have fun on the Rumblefish, but it isn’t quite in the same league as the Santa Cruz Tallboy or the Niner RIP 9.

Good Rumblefish

  • Very capable and very fun on the downhill
  • Will power through the rough stuff
  • Proprietary Fox DRCV provides extra cush
  • Love the Fox fork (15QR is a necessity in a 29er IMO)
  • Solid and laterally stiff all-around
  • Excellent parts spec

Bad Rumblefish

  • A little sluggish on the up
  • Aluminum frame can feel harsh (I’m a carbon junkie, what can I say?)

Bottom Line: 2010 Gary Fisher Rumblefish II 29er

With so many options in the 29er market these days, Gary Fisher is banking on a few downhill aficionados to jump on the Rumblefish and give it a go in the rough.

More Info: Visit FisherBikes.com

Written By

A Seattle native, Jason developed a love for the outdoors and a thing for mountains. That infatuation continues as he founded FeedTheHabit.com in 1999--sharing his love of mountain biking, trail running and backcountry skiing with the world. That passion is channeled into every article or gear review he writes. Utah's Wasatch Mountains are his playground.