The Best MTB Tyres for Trails

The UK's mountain bike trails offer a thrilling mix of terrain - from loamy singletrack to rocky descents and everything in between. Conquering these challenges requires the right rubber on your wheels, and that's where tyres come in, your choice of tyre can be critical in keeping you pinned! So, if you're looking to upgrade your grip and conquer any climb or descent, here's a rundown of some of the best mountain bike tyres available.


What To Consider For A Trail Specific Tyre

MTB trail tyres come in a variety of tread patterns to suit different riding styles and conditions, Enduro and Downhill tyres share many similarities with aggressive treads for clawing through rocks and roots on technical descents. They're often thicker and heavier for added puncture resistance on rough terrain. At the other end of the spectrum, XC (cross country) tyres are all about efficiency. They have smoother, faster-rolling treads for covering long distances quickly, with less weight to slow you down. Your riding style and the trails you choose to ride will determine which tyre choice is right for you.


  • Tread Pattern: Aggressive tread patterns provide better grip on loose and muddy surfaces, while smoother treads are ideal for hard-packed trails.
  • Compound: Softer compounds offer better grip but wear out faster. Harder compounds are more durable but provide less traction.
  • Casing: Look for reinforced casings for added puncture protection and durability.
  • Tubeless Compatibility: Tubeless tyres offer better puncture resistance and can be run at lower pressures for improved traction.


The Best Trail Tyres


Are There Different Types of Trail?

In short, yes! There is a reason why there are different types of tyres, because each trail can differ. Whether that’s the type of ground you’re riding on and if it’s purpose built or not, or if you prefer to head downhill or take on the terrain. Though there are plenty of trails all around the country, which you can find on our handy Trail Guide, they tend to be categorised into the following:


MTB Trail Centres:

Purpose-built networks of mountain bike trails designed for a variety of skill levels. Often have designated green (beginner), blue (intermediate), red (advanced), and black (expert) trails.

  • Pros: May include man-made features like berms (banked turns), jumps, and drops, but also utilise natural terrain.  Safer environment with clear signage, facilities like bike shops and cafes, and often offer uplift services (transporting riders back to the top) for downhill sections.
  • Cons: Can feel less natural than riding on untamed trails.


Natural Trails:

Existing trails, often hiking or horse bridleways, that mountain bikers can ride on. Can be official or unofficial routes.

  • Pros: More unpredictable terrain with varying difficulty, often less maintained than trail centres. Offers a more adventurous and natural riding experience. Great for exploring new areas.
  • Cons: Requires good navigation skills and knowledge of trail etiquette (respect for other trail users). Can be more dangerous due to potential for unexpected obstacles or loose terrain.


Downhill Trails:

Steep, purpose-built trails designed specifically for descending.

  • Pros: Focuses on technical challenges like drops, jumps, and rock gardens. Provides an adrenaline-pumping ride with minimal climbing involved. (uplifts are generally provided)
  • Cons: Requires specialised downhill bikes with robust suspension as well as adequate downhill tyres. Usually involves taking a lift or shuttling back to the top after each run.


Enduro Trails:

Short, challenging trails that combine uphill sections with technical downhill segments. Often part of enduro racing formats.

  • Pros: Varied terrain with both climbing and descending elements, can include natural and man-made obstacles. Tests overall fitness and technical riding skills. Offers a more self-sufficient riding experience where you pedal both up and down.
  • Cons: Requires good physical conditioning and a bike that can handle both climbing and descending effectively 


Now we know our trails, it’s time to take a closer look at our tyres and make sure you are gripped for whatever trail you choose!


Continental Kryptotal Enduro

Continental's Kryptotal Enduro is a worthy contender for the grippiest trail tyre out there. The soft compound grabs onto anything it touches, this tyre excels in the dry and is confidence inspiring when hitting the technical stuff! The tread pattern is well-spaced to avoid clogging yet still has a great rolling resistance ensuring consistent performance whilst out on the trails, making it a great choice for the conditions we often encounter in the UK.

  • Pros: Superb all-round grip, soft compound for confidence inspiring control 
  • Cons: Soft compound means the lift span is limited 
  • Ideal for: Trail/Enduro riders who are looking to put grip first! 

Best Price: HERE


Continental Kryptotal


Maxxis Minion DHR II

A legend for a reason, the DHR II excels in dry conditions. Its centre tread design minimises rolling resistance for powering up climbs, while the aggressive side knobs dig in for superb cornering grip, letting you carve those berms with confidence. The Maxxis DHF & DHR II combo is a solid front and rear choice for UK trails.

  • Pros: Legendary grip carves corners with confidence, good rolling resistance.
  • Cons: Can feel heavy, less ideal for very wet conditions.
  • Ideal for: Trail centres with hardpack climbs and flowy descents, aggressive all-round riding

Best Price: HERE


Maxxis Minion DHR II Tyre

Maxxis Minion DHF

Maxxis needs no introduction in the MTB world, and the Minion DHF is legendary for a good reason. The DHF, with its aggressive tread pattern, excels as a front tyre, clawing into loose terrain and providing confidence-inspiring grip on corners. The Maxxis DHF & DHR II combo is a solid choice for UK trails.

  • Pros: Superb grip giving excellent cornering bite on loose terrain
  • Cons: The DHF isn't the lightest tyre on the market. If you prioritise climbing efficiency above all else, there might be better options
  • Ideal for: Trail centres with hardpack climbs and flowy descents, aggressive all-round riding.

Best Price: HERE


Maxxis Minion DHF Tyre

Michelin Wild Enduro

Michelin's Wild Enduro lives up to its name. This tyre is super tough, built to handle the UK's rockier trails with ease. The aggressive tread digs deep into mud and loose soil, while the big central knobs provide excellent rolling for when you're getting up the hills. If you're an enduro rider or someone who loves pushing it on technical trails, the Wild Enduro is a great option.

  • Pros: Super durable build, excellent mud shedding thanks to open tread, soft compound for control.
  • Cons: Higher rolling resistance, Weight, not the lightest tyre around
  • Ideal for: Enduro riders, wet and muddy natural trails, technical descents in all conditions.

Best Price: HERE


Michelin Wild Enduro Gum-X


Schwalbe Magic Mary

This tyre is a true all-rounder, offering a great balance between dry grip, wet grip, and handling. The aggressive tread pattern with large, widely spaced knobs provides exceptional grip on loose rocks and roots, making it a great choice for technical natural trails. The softer compound option prioritises grip in mixed conditions.

  • Pros: Excellent all-rounder, great grip in loose terrain, comfortable with softer compound options.
  • Cons: Can feel sluggish on hardpack, heavier weight,
  • Ideal for: All-round trail riding, natural trails with a mix of terrain, riders who value versatility.

Best Price: HERE


Schwalbe Magic Mary


Vittoria Mazza G2.0

Embrace the challenge of technical terrain with the Mazza G2.0. The aggressive tread pattern provides exceptional grip on loose rocks and roots, common features on natural trails. The supple casing offers excellent bump absorption, giving you a comfortable and confidence-inspiring ride.

  • Pros: Superb grip on loose rocks and roots, comfortable with supple casing, great for technical trails.
  • Cons: Aggressive tread can feel sluggish on hardpack, 
  • Ideal for: Technical natural trails with loose rocks and roots, aggressive trail riding, riders who prioritise grip over speed.

Best Price: HERE


Vittoria Mazza G2.0


Pirelli Scorpion Enduro

Enduro riders will appreciate the aggressive tread pattern and enduro-optimised construction of the Scorpion Enduro. This tyre prioritises downhill grip and cornering control in loose and technical terrain, making it perfect for enduro racing or pushing your limits on natural trails.

  • Pros: Enduro-optimised construction, excellent downhill grip and cornering control, perfect for enduro racing.
  • Cons: Aggressive tread sacrifices rolling resistance, heavier weight.
  • Ideal for: Enduro racing, technical descents with loose and challenging terrain, riders who push their limits.

Best Price: HERE


Pirelli Scorpion Enduro


Choosing Your Perfect Pair

These are just a small selection of the fantastic trail mountain bike tyres available at Tweeks Cycles. Ultimately, the best tyre for you depends on your riding style and the trails you frequent but rest assured we will have a tyre that suits. Considerations when choosing new tyres should be:

  • Terrain: Are you riding mostly loose and technical trails, or a mix of surfaces?
  • Conditions: Do you encounter a lot of mud and wet weather, or are dry and dusty trails more common?
  • Riding Style: Do you prioritise climbing efficiency, descending prowess, or a balance of both?


By considering these factors and researching the specific strengths of each tyre, you can find the perfect rubber companion to conquer the UK's amazing mountain bike trails.


Top Tip: Don't forget to consider using tubeless tyres and a tubeless set up for added puncture resistance and a lighter setup!



Selecting the best mountain bike tyre for trails depends on your specific needs and riding conditions. By understanding the different types of trails and tyre features, you can make an informed decision to enhance your riding experience. Whether you're tackling downhill descents or cruising through trail centres, the right tyre makes all the difference.

For more information and to purchase these tyres, visit Tweeks Cycles. Happy riding!