Results 1 to 15 of 15
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Posts
    28

    Is trail riding in the snow feasible?

    Tried it out today and had a lot of wheel spin, I was thinking of getting studded tires. Will that make a huge difference?

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    138
    With little or with hard packed snow it's totally feasible but a whole different experience than on dry trails. If it's just snow, also aggressively treaded regular tires work ok. On the other hand, spike tires are a must if there is any ice on the trails. Proper ones like Schwalbe ISP cost a bunch though.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Lone Rager's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Posts
    3,052
    ^^^ yep. Ice can put you down stupidly fast. Recommend flat pedals and studded tires.
    Do the math.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: cookieMonster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    425
    It is very much condition and temperature dependent. I've been riding on snow for many, many years -- long before the first fat bike ever came into existence. Many of our trails close to town get packed down fairly quickly from hikers. When the temperatures are warmer, ie -- high 20s to low 30s, this makes for pretty good snow conditions -- as it packs tightly but does not quite turn into ice yet. I run very aggressive DH tires year-round, and these work very well in snow. The knobs bite into the snow and give pretty good traction. When it gets colder, as in 10-20 degrees, it's hard to ride in new snow that hasn't been packed down, because it is too cold to pack and stay cohesive. If we're only talking 2-3" of snow, then it doesn't matter because your tires will engage with the ground underneath. I'm talking feet of snow over a long winter.

    It's late winter/early spring when I find that studded tires become necessary. Because at that point, the trails have been getting packed for months, and it's warming up during the daytime to the point that the snow can turn into glare ice.
    Dear U.S. Forest Service: Please ban all wilderness in my riding areas.

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: sturge's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    185
    It's feasible but if riding technical stuff be prepared for more 'hike a bike' over terrain that you usually can ride. Studs do help but at a certain point most of our trails are too tech to make it worth riding until snow melts. When snow is too deep we ride perimeter of local bogs or ponds and wear in a track. Once it's worn in it's pretty fun...studs are a must for that. For really cold riding <20 degF) I put on flats so I can use use warm boots.
    12 Santa Cruz Heckler...still kicking
    18 Kona Process 153 AL/DL...

  6. #6
    Elitest thrill junkie
    Reputation: Jayem's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    27,733
    Sometimes. If it's just an inch or so of dry snow on a cold surface, it can be fairly fun. At other times, it's frustrating with your wheels sliding off the trail when you pick up just the slightest amount of speed or stray just slightly from the middle of the trail. This is where fat-bikes come in, they tend to have massively more traction and don't suffer from the same problems, until the conditions get way more extreme. I doubt studs would help much. They help on hard packed snow, ice and roots, but if the conditions are at all soft or loose, your main problem will be the wheel sliding out and you'll have to essentially "tip-toe" down the trail, which isn't much fun a lot of the times. I did plenty of snow-riding before I got a fat bike and sometimes, it was fun, but the fatbike blasts it into a totally different category.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  7. #7
    Monkey Wrangler
    Reputation: Speed Goat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Posts
    166
    Fatbike.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Dr Evil's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Posts
    355
    Ski's are more feasible.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: LargeMan's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2017
    Posts
    194
    Quote Originally Posted by Speed Goat View Post
    Fatbike.
    This, can ride up to 10 inches normally, up to 6 easy.

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Timothy G. Parrish's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    759
    Feasible. Just drop your PSI and tires that are lower profile seem to work better. Less snow gets packed into the tread. As others noted, you'll probably be pushing up the uphill climbs you can usually ride. A few weeks ago we had some good snow. I think I dropped PSI to 10 lbs. Tubeless. Best pedal choice is probably flats. Snow, mud, and ice make clipping into pedals difficult at times. We do this every time it snows and temps stay below freezing.

    Sent from my MotoG3 using Tapatalk

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Posts
    28
    Thanks for the help, also I forgot to mention that the snow right now is powder.

  12. #12
    meatier showers
    Reputation: Sparticus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Posts
    8,065
    Quote Originally Posted by cookieMonster View Post
    Dear U.S. Forest Service: Please ban all wilderness in my riding areas.
    Love this.
    =s
    disciplesofdirt.org

    We don't quit riding because we get old.
    We get old because we quit riding.

  13. #13
    Thinking about riding.
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Posts
    1,006
    I ride pretty much every snow under a foot. Sometimes it works great and I end up doing a relatively normal loop, sometimes it barely works and I push up a big climb so I can get all drifty on the descent... Usually it's somewhere in between. Every now and again you get that perfect snow that actually seems to have more traction than normal, those rides are glorious.

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation: dirtrider76's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Posts
    1,956
    Ride year round every year and none of us uses a fatbike. Usually we don't have a issue unless its deep and soft or flash freezes every day. We go looking to crust ride at times. The top layer melts and freezes enough that it will support you easily then ride on top. No studded tires makes it a challenge and its a blast.

    We actually have a trail with 4 drops in it that in winter has 5 cause the last one shoots onto a lake. I love winter riding and its killing me this year missing it.
    I like to fart when I'm in front of you on a climb

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation: vikb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    10,712


    Locally we ride snow with our normal 2.4" "summer" tires. No studs, no plus or fat tires. Works fine. We can climb 80% of the normal techy climbs we ride dry and 100% of the downhills including all the drops and features.



    Most of the time I prefer getting fresh tracks in the snow. Traction is great and I love how soft the trails feel. Occasionally we get enough snow where riding a packed down trail is better.



    I would just take whatever bike you currently have and go try to ride. See what happens. Try a few times as conditions can change a lot with a bit of time and some temp changes or with some traffic.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
    www.vikapproved.com

Similar Threads

  1. Is riding at West Magnolia feasible?
    By TheNormsk in forum Colorado - Front Range
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 02-27-2012, 03:24 PM
  2. MTB Resort: Feasible?
    By SWriverstone in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 40
    Last Post: 08-13-2011, 01:05 PM
  3. Is this feasible?
    By Archi-Magus in forum Frame Building
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 03-21-2011, 10:01 AM
  4. Wilson Creek & Farlow feasible on 5.5" trail bike
    By stevehollx in forum North & South Carolina
    Replies: 24
    Last Post: 02-16-2011, 08:13 PM
  5. Is a 16.5" MTB frame feasible for 5'9" 32" inseam?
    By GotoDengo in forum Beginner's Corner
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: 02-15-2011, 10:06 AM

Members who have read this thread: 108

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •