Cleary Bikes is a company focused JUST on making fantastic kids bikes. We actually reviewed the Hedgehog back in 2016, but with some updates, we think it’s worth another review. You can find our previous review here.
You can purchase the Hedgehog on the Cleary Bikes Site or at Backcountry.com (affiliate link).
The Hedgehog is Cleary’s 16″ kids bike, perfect for kids with an inseam of 17-21″. For our kids, this means about age 4-6.
It comes with quality components, a good reach for small hands on the hand brakes and a durable finish to prevent scratches and dents.
We love that the wheelbase is long, the pedals are large to allow for good foot-placement and the steel frame incredibly durable.
It comes in four different bright colors and lots of room for stickers for kids who like to make it their own.
One of the biggest changes we love in the updated Hedgehog is the low-rise handlebar that lets kids ride just a bit more upright than the previous flat handlebars. See the difference in position from the photos above (new model) and below (old model).
The slightly more upright positioning gives kids more leverage and requires less strength than the previous model.
Despite the changes, this bike is still ideal for more aggressive riders and what I recommend for parents looking for a mountain bike for their kids. More timid riders do better with a more upright positioning to give them added stability as they learn.
What we love:
- Very durable
- Vegan leather saddle that is smooth and plush – one of our favorites for kids’ bikes
- Geometry of the bike allows for a more aggressive stance, perfect for pump tracks, doing jumps and mountain biking (opposed to the more upright WOOM bike, for example, which excels more as a pavement/path bike).
- The price of the bike is a bit more affordable than other kid-specific brands, which is great for families
- Internal cable-routing helps eliminate tangling up of kids vs. bike
What we aren’t so crazy about:
- No quick-release seat….which is a huge pet peeve of mine. I feel like we are constantly adjusting the seat height on our kid bikes, so want that option without a tool.
The Cleary Hedgehog is a great bike for the pump-track, riding trails, and just riding around the neighborhood. The geometry of the bike forces kids to be in an aggressive stance, ready to really ride those obstacles (which a more up-right bike can’t).
While it isn’t the lightest bike on the market, it is far better that anything you’ll find at a box store or from a major bike brand simply miniaturizing mountain bikes.
We recommend this bike for kids who want to hit the pump track and try out some mountain biking, along with normal riding around the neighborhood.
You get what you pay for, and the $375 price tag is a great deal for a high-quality (and slightly less than its competitors).
Cleary did send us a loaner bike for this review. However, as always, this is exactly what we tell our family and friends!
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