I am currently living in a plane area. I use an MTB (mountain bike). My work place is 10 to 15 km away from my home. Temperature is around 36 degree in celsius in my region.

Question : Is mountain bicycle good for this purpose?

Edit: See the image of mtb below. One more thing roads are straight but there are few up and downs in my ways.

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  • 6
    You mean you live in a flat area with no hills? (I.e., on a plain). Are you riding on tarmac roads? Commented Sep 6, 2019 at 13:20
  • 17
    I'd definitely prefer to ride a MTB than walk to work.
    – Criggie
    Commented Sep 6, 2019 at 13:51
  • 2
    @Argenti Apparatus no hills
    – new
    Commented Sep 6, 2019 at 14:39
  • At this temperature, I would only ride to work if I was able to shower there, but your preference may vary!
    – Marv
    Commented Sep 9, 2019 at 8:31
  • 1
    Btw, your saddle looks extremely low. Unless you are of quite unusual short body height, it seems to be way too low. This is an extremely common beginners mistake and may not feel like a problem if you only ride a kilometer or two. But on a 10 to 15km commute such a low saddle will kill you. Your saddle should be high enough that you cannot reach your pedals at their low point with your heels anymore (the ground should be equally unreachable). The first time you ride with a saddle of appropriate height, you'll be surprised at how much power you can suddenly put on your pedals. Commented Sep 13, 2019 at 11:48

4 Answers 4


10-15 km is not a particularly long distance. You can certainly ride and MTB on roads to commute to work. Obviously an MTB will not be as efficient to ride as a bike designed for road use (such as a flat-bar commuter, road oriented hybrid or drop bar road bike).

You can make your MTB more efficient by fitting narrower tires with a road tread (or no tread) and inflating them to the higher end of their pressure range.

  • 9
    I would heavily advise against riding on tires with no tread... On the other hand, the optimal tread for this use is slick tread.
    – juhist
    Commented Sep 7, 2019 at 18:26
  • 4
    I guess that's a bad use of words. "No tread" implies heavily worn tires. "Slick tread" is a tread specifically for properly paved roads, but it does look like it has "no" treads...
    – Nelson
    Commented Sep 9, 2019 at 4:20
  • 1
    If you look for 'hybrid tires', you can find some that have a raised central 'ridge' which is hard and flat, while having some 'gentle' MTB tread along the sides. On hard tarmac surfaces you are mostly riding on the central ridge for efficiency, while on softer dirt you're using the side-treads as well. I've used these and highly recommend them as an 'all purpose' tire.
    – Ben Hull
    Commented Sep 9, 2019 at 12:50
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    @BenHull I can second that - the ones I used had a rather prominent ridge allowing for a proper MTB tread around. Rolling resistance went to less than half that of what I had prior (not actually measured, just how it felt) Off-road, no discernable difference. The only issue is stability on the road feels less initially, as you "fall off" the ridge when leaning into corners, instead of rolling around the tyre. You get used to it quickly, it's quite like fitting very narrow tyres really.
    – Baldrickk
    Commented Sep 9, 2019 at 14:03

That depends on the type of mountain bike you have. For example: XC bikes are sometimes referred to as the "road bikes of the mountain" for their long range touring ability.

If you wish to make your bike more comfortable for commuting, you can:

  • Boost the handlebars with a stem raiser. This will give you a more upright position more similar to a hybrid bike.
  • Increase the tire pressure, for less rolling resistance.
  • Swap out the tires with slicker less knobby ones for road use.
  • Lock out the fork, so you don't lose energy to the suspension.
  • Add a rack and pannier bags, so you don't have to carry the weight of a backpack on your shoulders.

I boosted the handlebars on mine to make it more comfortable for on my back, and now I do about 10+ miles a day, everyday riding around town. It's only marginally slower than the hybrid I was riding before.

  • Increasing the pressure in MTB (knobby) tires on flat pavement can worsen the rolling resistance. If it's relative to very low off-road pressure, then that makes sense.
    – Kaz
    Commented Sep 6, 2019 at 22:31
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    +1 For rack and panniers. Besides the weight resting on the bike and not on you, you avoid wrinkling clothes with backpack straps or shoulder straps. That also keeps clothing loose to allow for better ventilation / cooling, even avoiding some sweat stains.
    – Jahaziel
    Commented Sep 6, 2019 at 22:43
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    Why does everyone claim that an upright position is comfortable? When I lie into the dropbars I can cruise many miles and much faster. One can easily do half an hour time trial completely in the drops without any back pain. And much faster too. But riding fast and uoright - that is uncomfortable. Commented Sep 7, 2019 at 10:18
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    @Jahaziel Exactly, That's why I came up with a unique solution to carry my backpack: bicycles.stackexchange.com/questions/38314/… Commented Sep 7, 2019 at 15:53
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    IMO I'd go no further than swapping tyres, and spending on amenities like mudguards/bikelock/etc. I would not spend money on a fork swap that could be spent on a generally more-suitable road bike.
    – Criggie
    Commented Sep 8, 2019 at 19:19

10 to 15 km is no problem on a bike. If you are riding on roads it will be less efficient than a road bike, but it still should be no problem. (it will depend more on your fitness level than the actual bike itself.)

My larger concern would be the temperature. 35 degrees is very hot. Perhaps you are more acclimatized to that than I would be, but working hard in that kind of heat could be quite strenuous on the body. Make sure you stay hydrated and cool if you decide to give it a go.

  • Having one/two full water bottle/bidons is going to be important, as is riding outside the heat of the day. Given its work, there's a reasonable chance OP will ride before 9 AM and after 5 PM localtime, which will help. Welcome to Stackexchange!
    – Criggie
    Commented Sep 8, 2019 at 19:20

I guess I'll have to just say yes, it's good, but no, not the best option. It starts with ergononomics; the build of the bike, and thus your posture, is way different from bikes more suitable for comfortably doing longer distances.

If you happen to want (to know about) the best option, look at what type of bikes Dutch people use for A to B purposes.

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