set up for winter riding- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    set up for winter riding

    hey guys, i want to build a bike for winter riding (i live in ottawa, Canada)...but not sure of what size tires to get and if going tube less makes a differnce in winter....can those of you that ride in the white stuff give me some tips on building a proper winter ride ? thanks

  2. #2
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    Have you looked at the Salsa Mukluk or the Surly Pugsley? Those would be my personal choice for such ventures.

  3. #3
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    For me it's always tubeless no matter the conditions. Don't want to be messing around changing tubes trail side in the middle of winter.

    The best tire I've found so far for winter conditions here in western Pa, would be 2.4 mountain kings. They have tons of grip and work well in a few inches of snow. After that it's time for XC skis or a snow bike (which I would love to try!).

  4. #4
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    I have a SS Haro that I'm going to put gears on becuse when I use the stand-up and mash gear the back tire brakes loose and also going with a big fat front soon, but for the most part i too XC Skate Ski.

    If you ride your bike on saltY roads you will also want to have some know how and tools to tear down and put back togather your bike to protect it from the salt. I'm in Northern MN.

  5. #5
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    Just south of you....

    ...about an hour and a half in upstate NY.

    While I'm a huge tubeless fan, and riding that way for over 8 years, on a winter bike I don't find it necessary. Pinch flats are usually not an issue and neither are thorns and such. Snow and ice cover most everything sharp and really fast downhill speeds are unlikely. So, assuming you are using winter specific tires, just go with tubes.


    Which bike/tires..... of course it depends on your riding conditions.

    My personal favorite has been a rigid, SS, karate monkey for a number of years. While a Pugsley, or similar ride might be nice, I find them necessary only for riding in deep snow. If you are riding in shallow snow, or heavily crusted snow, a fat 29" knobbie will often do. A Pugs is quite an investment and I find if the snow is that deep, I'm skiing, not biking anyway. Seems to me snow riding comes into play when there is not enough snow for good skiing, and in that case a Pugs is usually not needed. Whether or not you need gears is dependent on what terrain you'll ride and your fitness level. A SS is very nice as winter riding can be hard on a geared drivetrain.

    Ice vs. snow... If riding in ice, studded tires will be needed. No amount of knobbage or tire volume will save you on ice. Studs or stay home. Nokians are standard fare, but the Schwalbe Ice Spiker looks nice and may be my next studded tire.

    Riding on snowy trails, or are we simply talking winter commuting? That is another discussion then....

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