Surly Ogre 27.5 Plus Bike Review

The Surly Ogre 27.5 plus is different than all the other bikes I’ve ridden. It’s the do it all bike that’s great for bike touring trips and commuting with the switch of a wheelset. It’s nimble on the single track and fast on the downhills. It’s one of the most comfortable bikes I’ve ridden. My journey first began with the Surly Long Haul Trucker back in 2014. I’ve put over 5000 miles on that bike and have since transitioned to the Ogre for a more capable off-road bike that’s able to do it all.

Surly manufactures some of the most versatile bikes in the industry with a collection of funky names and framesets that can suit your style of riding to the tee. I built my Ogre up on 27.5, 3-inch plus wheels with a Shimano 1×11 groupset.

My gear range is 32 x 11- 42 for climbing and is optimized for holding a fully loaded setup using bikepacking bags by Revelate Designs. It’s simple, clean setup and requires very little maintenance when out in the field since I have just a rear derailleur and mechanical setup for my brakes.   

The Cockpit

In the cockpit, I run Shimano Koyak bars mounted up to a Shimano PLT stem that’s 90mm in length to give me a comfortable upright feel while touring. I find this the most comfortable for me. The bars handlebars are traditional mountain bike bars which I prefer over dedicated touring handlebars. 

They are wide enough to mount my Revelate Designs Sweetroll bag to the front and don’t get in the way of my brake levers. I run Ergon GP2 grips which provide multiple hand placement and comfort along with my trusty Avid brake levers that I’ve had for years and are one of my favorite levers.

I’m running TRP Spyre SLC mechanical disc brakes on the bike that stop on Shimano rotors. The brakes are one of the best I’ve ridden because they actuate on both sides of the rotor which maximizes stopping power and reduces friction. They are also great for repairing in the field as all you would need to replace are pads and the brae cables if anything were to go wrong.

As for my wheelset, I have the Ogre sitting on 34mm WTB KOM Tough rims with Wheelsmith spokes and Shimano XT O.L.D. 148mm Boost hub. This sits nice and flush in the dropout of the Ogre with Surly Monkey Nuts to center the wheel in the dropout. I noticed that this makes the rear end stiff and much nimbler than previous setups I’ve had for bikepacking and touring trips.

Parts List Breakdown

Links below to purchase all the parts I used for my Surly Ogre.

Over the course of 4 days the Surly Ogre has proven to be one of my favorite bikes I have ridden. Check out the film Bikepacking the Valles Caldera in the short films section of the site to see it in action. Leave a comment below if you have questions about this setup and share this post with a friend.

Watch The Video Review

Surly Ogre 27.5 Plus Bikepacking Rig

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Ridden & Written by

Dwayne Burgess (Manual Pedal)

Dwayne_Self-Portrait

This review is based on my personal opinion and experience. All parts were purchased on my own and links provided are affiliate partnerships with Amazon.

10 Comments

  1. Nicole Lehmann

    Really enjoyed the article and corresponding pictures and video. Details about your bike and why you chose the build you did was excellent.

  2. Andrew

    Looks great! Awesome setup!

  3. David Collins

    Great site and videos. I am slowly getting into cycling again after a break of 5 years. I was advised to get back in the saddle by my physio and doctor to help with knee problems that had ended my mountain biking. I bought a Surly Ogre, set up as an ‘all road tourer, to start off again and love it. i used most of the hardware from my old Orange 5 single track mountain bike – 3×9 XT and Hope running gear. When this wears out I am going to treat it to a Rholhof hub! I also have a Ribble (UK make) gravel bike which I also love and am clocking the miles up. Its ten months since I got back in the saddle and I feel stronger and fitter every day and haven’t looked back. It’s thanks to great content like yours and other inspirational riders that I have turned my life and my health around so thank you. Keep it going as this stuff really makes a difference to people’s lives. I am looking forward to my first proper tour, when lockdown ends – thanks again.

    • Dwayne Burgess

      Hi David, Thanks a lot for the kind words. That means a lot and I’m glad that the content and videos on here inspire you to continue pushing the pedals. I too am looking forward to getting more bike touring adventures in soon.

  4. Brewer the noob

    Hi, how tall are you and what cycling inseam. I am between l an xl but hard to decide with 6’3″ an 36 cycling inseam. I would run with moloko bar. That is the last gen ogre right?

    • Dwayne Burgess

      I’m 6’1″ with a 35 inseam. The XL fits nice but also is a big bike. I could have went with a large but I wanted the extra space for the particular build so my bags and other gear can be spread out nicely. As for the model year, it’s a 2017.

  5. brewer the noob

    Thanks, 2017 there was no xxl anymore right? I believe XL is for me then

    • Dwayne Burgess

      No for 2017 there was no XXL model. What they did for the updated frame was take away the caliper brake mounts making it full disc. This I thought was great for fat 3-inch tires as often times I find my front wheel hard to get past the caliper brake mounts.

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