There is a saying that has been around since cyclist took to the dirt. It still holds true after all these years riding. Riding the Ross bike back in the day it held true. Getting serious into Mountain Biking and riding a Specialized Stumpjumper Comp made out of Steel in the States it held true as well. My next bike was when I began to build descending skills more and it was a Gary Fisher AL-1. This was an Aluminum tubed XC bike that was mid range but at that point I thought I had my hands on a Ferrari.
The Litespeed Obed saw many miles crunched into it. I had that bike for about two years. I sold it eventually and took some time off. Then in 1996 I bought a Specialized FSR Elite. It was my first foray into full suspension. The meaning of the original term became somewhat muddier while riding around with suspension to absorb my mistakes. Once the speeds increased and the trails became rougher then it once again rang true.
I had that bike until lat 1999 and then in early 2000 I got an Orange Patriot LT. The bike was wicked, stiff, light, responsive and stuck like glue. It was a whole new level of bicycle for me. My first real ride on it was down a few trails in Santa Barbara. So it may have had 6.5" of rear travel but the big rocks still made the old saying true.
Since 2000 I have had over 15 different bikes and almost every one was of the Downhill variety. Sometimes out on the trail things just flow together like water over rocks and that trail with the knee high rocks feels like a sidewalk. Your mind drifts away and the decades of riding and fast muscle memory take control. So next time you are out on a ride look for the smooth lines, ride loose, lay off the brakes and glide. It's as if you are in a dream and it feels oh so smooth and oh so fast.