Carbon wheels are often the pinnacle of upgrading a mountain bike. They are usually lighter, stiffer, and transfer power more efficiently, which makes for a transformative experience switching from alloy hoops, especially a heavy, flexy OEM alloy wheelset. For years, the carbon mountain bike wheel space was dominated by a small handful of brands, and they were often unattainable for many because of their price. After already spending a few thousand bucks on a mountain bike, who wants to go drop two or three-thousand more on a wheelset?
But every year, we have seen more and more affordable wheels for the average everyday trail rider, to make their bike lighter and improve the ride quality. UK-based Hunt Bike Wheels has been around for a little while, but their wheel distribution is fairly new to the US. Last year when I was in Sun Valley, Idaho for an event, I was introduced to the folks behind Hunt, and they gave me a look at their new All Mountain Carbon H_Impact wheelset. Since then, they have been getting more and more wheels to the West, and are setting up a North American shop in Boulder, Colorado.
At the time, the new carbon wheelset was retailing for $800 (!) Hunt caught my attention. Since then, the price has dropped by $20. But, yes, $800 for a carbon wheelset, is generally what people pay when shopping used.