I admit I’d like to have more often encounters with Maxxis products, but the situation doesn’t always favour this to happen. Probably that’s why I try to make the most of the chances given to ride their tires, and also for the fact that they count as a favourite brand for many users. The reasons for this latter fact are plenty, since some riders really enjoy the lack of self-promotional texts that boast never-before- seen performances, or endless lists of features that will make you fall for the products. So that means that Maxxis relies on the quality of its tires in order to impress and I dare say it’s a safe bet.
Confirming these statements above is the Maxxis Aspen, a cross-country tire, with small knobs that are cleverly spread, in order to secure a high rolling speed. As for grip, especially in corners, the side knobs, which are a bit larger, ensure that the situation doesn’t get hectic even when pushing your bike to the limit. When looking closely at the tires, one can notice that the manufacturer layed the center knobs in one direction, while the lateral ones are pointed in the opposite one, this lay-out adding extra grip in dry conditions, where it shows it’s the kind of tire that gets you out of trouble.
Maxxis doesn’t seem to pay too much attention to weight, since the foldable Aspen (available only in this version) tips the scale at 615 grams, something I can live with and most users too, but which is far off from top values. However, there’s a trade-off for this drawback, the extra weight being represented by the extra compound inserted in the side walls for the purpose of enhanced protection. And you might want to know that wet conditions are the ones that zapp Aspen’s energy instantly, so don’t bother taking them out for a ride after or during a rain.
I see Maxxis Aspen as a very good alternative for lighter cross-country tires such as the Schwalbe Rocket Ron (460 grams) or the Continental X-King (525 grams), and must underline that it manages to balance price-performance-quality equation skillfully. This dual-compound off-road contender puts up a great fight, but it won’t do so too many times, since it didn’t turned out to be exactly a high-mileage tire.