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The Ideal Galbraith Mt. Bike?
Cannondale Jekyll 2000 SX

Cannondale JekyllMongo doing the old double log drop on Galbraith Mt.'s Purple Heart on the Cannondale Jekyll

This is Mongo's personal flame-fade Jekyll 2000 SX, which he tricked out with a Specialized Body Geometry seat, Specialized Ti spindled S-Works SPD pedals, Easton CT2 carbon fiber handle bars and seat post, Coda Babu bar ends, Spot rock ring, Shimano Durace bottom bracket, and a custom built rear wheel with a Hügi 240 hub. Note the spare inner tube wrapped -- hockey stick style -- around the chain stay to keep the chain from banging against it. 

Model: Cannondale Jekyll 2000 SX
Category: Light Weight Trail
Suspension: 4 inches front; 4.5 inches rear
Ideal for: The Jekyll is at home everywhere on Galbraith Mt. from the Ridge Trail to Shawn's Trail.
Over all performance: This is a excellent all mountain trail bike. It climbs marvelously (this is the bike that Mongo got most of the World Record for climbing on a mountain bike described in Vert Quest) and it descends like a diving hawk. It's nimble enough to slice the single track, yet deep and stable enough to handle highly technical situations. "It made a brave man out of me," said one Jekyll rider, "and that's no small task." Bottom line: if you want to be able to rip the entire mountain in the fastest manner possible -- we're talking bottom to top to bottom again, combined time -- then the Jekyll is still a great ride.
Front end: The Lefty is the best four-inch travel front end available anywhere, if light weight and plush feel are what you want. And it gets extra style points for being one of the weirdest (and cleverest) bike components you're ever likely to see. It also defines lateral stiffness in mountain bike front ends. No other offering from any other fork maker comes close, until you go to a heavy QR-20 through-bolt axel.

Although the Lefty lacks the on-the-fly adjustable head tube angle and travel features of the latest offerings from Rockshox, Manitou and Marzocchi, it does allow you to change a flat tire without removing the wheel, which none of the others can do. You give up some convenience with the Lefty (it doesn't have a quick release front hub, and it can be impossible to fit on some bike racks), but if you chart every front end on the market in 2005 for lightness and deep, plush feel, the Lefty is where the lines cross.

Rear end: The single pivot rear suspension of the Jekyll used to ride a Fox Float RL shock for four-plus inches of travel with a deliciously plush, semi-active feel. It's rear end may be a little old school, but -- like all mono-pivot designs -- it's gotten a significant performance boost from the new Staple Platform / Pro Pedal style rear shock designs. By 2005, Cannondale had adapted the Jekyll to use either a Fox Pro Pedal air shock or coil-over, and increased the travel almost 10 percent.
Brakes:  All Jekylls come equipped with disc brakes. Earlier models featured Coda Expert brakes, which were light but relatively weak. Beginning in 2002, however, Cannondale started using Magura Louise dual piston discs on most Jekylls, and in 2005 Cannondale spec'd Avid BB5 Discs.
(The devil is in the) Details: If you ever wonder if bike designers, like, screw up, take a look at the rear end on turn of the century Jekylls. The asymetrical seat and chain stays were misaligned so that you have de-dish your rear wheel to get it to fit. No kidding! What a useless hassle that is!

The down-pull type derailleur used by the Jekyll is not optimal for Galbraith Mt. because mud quickly degrades the shifting performance. The solution is sealed cables like the sort offered by Jag Wire, which cost you about $20 when you include tax, etc.

Durability: The Jekyll will carry you through just about anything you can imagine on Galbraith, but turn of the century Jekylls had trouble absorbing heavy technical trail riding. A number of core Galbraith riders have broken the Jekyll's frame, and Mongo personally broke Jekylls in 2000 (twice), 2001 (twice) and 2002. However, when Cannondale got over its motorcycle mania and resulting Chapter 11 bankruptcy, it finally addressed the problem.
Geometry and sizing: The Jekyll's unique collar and trunion-mounting for the Fox Float RL rear shock allows the head tube angle to be infinitely adjusted from 69.5 to 71 degrees, and the seat tube angle from 72 to 73.5 degrees. The sizing of the Jekyll is full and honest. 
Weight: 27.25 pounds as pictured.
Reviewed: March 2002; updated October 2005

Mongo doing the old double log drop on Galbraith Mt.'s Purple Heart on the Cannondale Jekyll

Mongo on the loose on Purple Heart with the Cannondale Jekyll.

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Vert Quest, excerpts from Mongo's World Record Journal by Bruce Brown "Mountain In The Clouds" by Bruce Brown