What Do All Those Marin Bikes Model Names Mean?

Ever wondered what all of those weird and wonderful Marin Bikes model names mean? Wonder no more as we break it down with some of our favourites.

Inspired By The Places That We Love.

What’s in a name? Alcatraz, Rift Zone, Presidio, Fair Fax. Every bike in the Marin range is a celebration of the places we live and ride. Our bikes are designed for riders all over the world but inspiration starts at home, right here in Marin County, and our names reflect that.

Our home county sits across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco. From the rugged mountains of the Coast Range to the soft sand of Stinson Beach, it’s crammed with beautiful outdoor spaces that are perfect for exploring by bike.

Of course, it’s not just famous for its scenery. Marin County is also known worldwide as the birthplace of mountain biking. Way back in the 70s, local daredevils were hauling their modified klunkers to the tops of fire roads and racing back down. The early mountain bikers found their machines were also perfect for exploring the dirt tracks and mountain passes, and you probably know the rest.

Not all Marin’s models are christened after local places, but scan a map of the area and you’ll soon start seeing familiar names. If you’re driving up Highway 101 from San Francisco, you’ll spot signs for Sausalito, Larkspur, San Rafael, Fairfax, Terra Linda and more.

Marin Pine Mountain

Marin Pine Mountain - A Tribute To Where It All Began

The Marin Pine Mountain, our timeless steel adventure hardtail, is named after a peak in the shadow of Mt. Tam. The fire road that encircles it leads to the top of Repack, the original downhill track that those flannel-shirt clad pioneers used for their races at the dawn of mountain biking.

The Marin Alcatraz - A Bike to Break Free

In the middle of the San Francisco Bay sits one of the world’s most notorious prisons: Alcatraz. An intimidating, isolated lump of rock, surrounded by shark-filled waters, it’s where the most hardened criminals were sent to serve their time. Given its history, it was the perfect namesake for our rough-and-tumble dirt jumper, the Marin Alcatraz.
Marin Alcatraz in white
Marin Fairfax on a road

The Marin Fairfax - For Speed and Style, Man.

The birthplace of mountain biking and the non-conformist ideals of the 60s were closely intertwined, and the Marin Fairfax is the epitome of that.

Fairfax, California is a small, socially-conscious community with echoes of its hippie roots. It’s home to the Gestalt Haus (a popular watering hole) as well as the Marin Museum of Bicycling and Mountain Bike Hall of Fame. The world-famous Repack Trail ends on its outskirts. The Fairfax was made to be the perfect bike for scooting around its namesake's quiet roads and bike lanes in suitably laid-back style.

Marin Gestalt - Saying Prost! To Our Favourite Watering Hole

One of our gravel models, the Marin Gestalt, has a name with a dual meaning.

To some, it means a collection of elements that becomes more than the sum of its parts. The Gestalt might look like a road bike at first glance, but thanks to its endurance geometry, disc brakes, and tire clearance, it’s capable of a whole lot more.

To Marin County residents, it probably conjures up hazy memories of the Gestalt Haus in Fairfax, a popular post-ride watering hole with great German beers, tasty food and even wall-mounted bike storage. It’s walking distance from where our Director of Product Development was living while dreaming up the bike.
Marin Gestalt in a farm yard
Marin Headlands in a field

The Marin Headlands - Built For Adventures

For some of the most Insta-perfect scenery in Marin County, you need to head for the Headlands. This rugged spur of the Golden Gate National Park sits at the entrance to Marin County, just across the famous bridge. The Marin Headlands is perfect for the dirt roads and jagged hills you’ll need to take on to get to those amazing views.

Marin Muirwoods - Retro Roots and Ancient Redwoods

The Marin Muirwoods was one of our original mountain bike models of the early 90's, and later morphed into a super versatile MTB-influenced urban bike. Muir Woods National Monument is known for its network of hiking trails through old-growth coast redwoods - a must-see when visiting Marin county.
Black Marin Muirwoods against rusty metal door
Marin Presidio in a tunnel

The Marin Presidio - Made To Explore The City And The Park

The San Francisco Bay is ringed with historic fortifications built to protect the port and city, and Presidio was the site of one of the earliest US Army bases in the area. Now part of the National Park, the Presidio is a beautiful area for recreation - be it hiking, riding or exploring the former military buildings. For our tough, no-nonsense city commuter, the Marin Presidio is a perfect match.

The Marin Rift Zone - Ground Breaking Off-Roader

The San Francisco Bay Area is famous for earthquakes. The Rift Zone sits along the San Andreas Fault, where the North American and Pacific Plates intersect near Point Reyes Station which has itself been creeping northwards over the last million or so years.

Whilst there's little to love about earthquakes, we can thank the collision of tectonic plates for the mountains that we ride up and down. When it came to naming our super versatile, up-and-down, ground-breaking off-roader it seemed like the Marin Rift Zone was a natural choice.
Marin Rift Zone 275 in blue and black
Marin Sausalito on a bridge

The Marin Sausalito - Up, Down and Along!

If you’ve been paying attention so far, you’ll have figured out that Marin County isn’t just pretty, it’s also pretty hilly. Sausalito is the first city you come to after crossing the iconic Golden Gate Bridge and is a popular tourist destination thanks to its historic buildings and picturesque location by the bay. Its steep streets are a breeze on an e-bike, so it felt just right when we came to name our electric round owner, the Marin Sausalito.

The Marin Stinson - Born From Beach Cruises

Stinson Beach is a laid-back, bike-friendly beach town and was the inspiration for our comfortable cruiser in both name and design. One of Northern California’s best-kept secrets, Stinson Beach's arc of perfect golden sand is nestled alongside Mt Tamalpais State Park and is a great place to get in some coastal cruises. Hence the name for our much-loved Marin Stinson.
Blue and Black Marin Stinson
Woman on Marin Sausalito with golden gate bridge in background

Born in Marin County, For Riders All Over the World.

The bikes we create aren't just named after our favourite places, they're inspired by them. We made bikes that we love to ride and that have grown out our favourite rides, be it hardcore off-road, a cruise to the beach or the daily grind.

As Marin has grown throughout the world, we've realised that our designs aren't just suitable for Stinson Beach or the Golden Gate National Park but for people and places all over the planet. The names of our bikes help us to keep the connection with where we're from and remind us of how lucky we are to call it our home.

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