I am going to do a 'gravel grind' ride with lots of elevation gain and want to be able to keep up with the cyclocross bike riders. From what I understand they have 46/36 chainrings. My mountain bike came with 36/22 rings. 104/64 bcd crank. 10 speed cassette. I would like to run a 44/30 or 42/28. Does a 44 or 42 tooth 104bcd chainring exist that fits a 2x (and not 3x) crank? My bike is a specialized crave. I would put on a 40t chainring or consider going to a triple crank. Or could I put a road crankset on? My bottom bracket is 73mm gxp.
Do you have a crank that's easy to replace, like Shimano Hollowtech 2? It's actually easier to exchange those than chainrings. I usually ride a road-compact (50,34), but for long tours around the alps I exchange them for a MTB one (44,34,24). I have a non-indexed front-shifter, so I don't need to change settings. Triple crankset axis seem to be some 3mm longer than double road cranksets, don't know about double MTB - double road difference.
Anyway, beware that you might need to change the derailleur distance to bottom bracket - 44 chainrings are quite a big larger than 36 ones. With that comes readjusting the cable.
However, do you really need a bigger ring to keep up? I don't know your exact wheel size, but with 2m circumference at 36/11, 90 rpm you do about 35km/h
If Google down for you?