First, yes, I am biased in this review - I already own the bike. So what's to know about this bike? If you watch all the pro and "independent" YouTubers describe this bike, you'll get some mixed messages. Pinkbike was a little disappointed in its descending, but thought it climbed well. The Beta Tests were a little disappointed in its climbing, complaining for half the video about having to use the climb switch. Well, what the hell do any of them know??? Here's my biased, unscientific, non-professional review, based on narrow knowledge and cliched, vague platitudes. Sorta like cable news. Remember, "I'm just some fuckin guy." My experience on the Instinct C30 so far: 3 rides 54 miles 9200' of climbing Trails: Marshall Canyon (La Verne), Exploration (Running Springs), Lower Merrill/Mt. Lowe Railway/Middle Merrill/Sunset (Altadena), plus a few miles climbing and descending pavement. Bike Setup: Ride-9 Setting: Position 9 (slackest) Chainstay Flip Chip: short Climbing: 9/10 It climbs very well. Maybe older RM's had a lot of pedal bob, maybe Ryan Palmer is a pussy. I have yet to want to use the climb switch on the shock. It may be that the basic Rockshox Delux shock has enough inherent damping to cause this, but the descending makes me think otherwise. On steep sections, the front did not wander noticeably, and I feel balanced/centered enough to keep the front on the ground easily. Power seems to get delivered to the ground without noticeable issue. Standing while climbing is for single-speeders, so don't. Descending: 9/10 This thing fuckin rips. Part of that is what I'll call "handling" (see below). It has 140 mm of rear travel. and there's no "over-damped" feel to it either. It just eats up the chunk without issue. Normally, I would say I prefer more travel, but I haven't hit anything yet that makes me think, "I wish it had more travel."(Funny about that - more travel is on the way.) The weight of the bike is extremely well balanced front-to-back. Lifting the front to help get over something, or to avoid stuffing it into a hole, or to course-correct, is very easy. Sending it off drops and small jumps - I MEAN JUST RIDING ALONG, it is very easy to control the bike. Handling: 9.5/10 Like any bike, this one will get off course when you hit those baseball-sized loose rocks, but correcting course seems more intuitive and requires less energy than just about any bike I've ever ridden. Even more impressive (to me anyway) is the way the bike can be moved around under me with such ease. Specifically, switching between successive left- and right-hand turns seems effortless compared to other bikes I've ridden. So, would I change anything? #1 - Increased front rotor to 203 mm. (Already done.) #2 - Better brake levers, or a completely upgraded set of brakes. (Someday.) #3 - The funny thing...I'll be experimenting with a longer fork and longer shock, essentially making it into an Altitude. I'm really hoping this doesn't negatively affect the handling...this bike's handling is so sweet as-is that I don't want to mess it up. But, I do anticipate occasionally finding myself in places where more travel would be nice, so time will tell. After saving up for 2 years, I placed the order and waited about 8 months for this bike, and then shelled out a fair chunk of change, so OF COURSE I want it to be awesome. So far, it is probably the best bike I've ever ridden. Bias confirmed! Anyway, that's all I've got for today. Go away now.