Minneapolis --one bike, four seasons, doable??- Mtbr.com
Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    139

    Minneapolis --one bike, four seasons, doable??

    I'll be moving to Minneapolis this summer! I realize that it is not uncommon for people to own several bikes, including one for winter specifically. But I was wondering if rather than split the budget, I could get a "solid" bike for all four seasons, and for both commuting and trail riding.

    For example, I am thinking of getting a titanium fatbike with 27.5 wheels, and have Schwalbe Ones for commuting and Hodags for trail and winter. I would go singlespeed and rigid fork for simplicity, and likely would only go to trails near the U.

    Are there flaws or things I am overlooking in this plan? Are two mid-tier bikes better than a higher-level one?

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    930
    First, welcome to our delightful town.

    Second, the local mountainbike organization, the Minnesota Off-Road Cyclists or MORC, have a reasonably robust forum and facebook presence where you will get a plethora of opinions on this topic.

    Third, here is my thought. If you are looking for a bike to ride only singletrack, a single bike is doable. There will be times when a non-fat option will be limited simply because the snow hasn't been packed enough to ride. Might consider a fat, front suspension bike for year round use if you are willing to sacrifice maximum speed. A plus size option is, to me, a worthwhile consideration to blend ability to ride softer surfaces and still have a pretty fun summer ride.

    If you are looking to ride everywhere, especially in the winter, know that we salt the bedjezus out of all paved surfaces, and this takes a toll on bikes. I would much rather ride a bike that I can do simple, but constant , maintenance on for my every day riding around, using my MTB for MTB riding only.

    Theodore Wirth park is the closest official ride to the U proper. Roughly 6 miles from the U, and about half that if you catch the train to Target field.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Posts
    217
    I'll second what zombinate said. salt is not your friend. I ride my fat about 2x/week in the winter. I ride about 2 blocks on my side street and then the rest on bike path with 3 street crossings to get to the trail and then repeat on the way home. I have rust on my front derailleur I installed in January of 2017. My bike resides in the garage so it doesn't get washed off until spring. Just something to be mindful of.

    I think Jeff G commutes around the Theo area year round on his fatty and puts on tons of miles. Look around for him in the fat forum and maybe send a pm. I'm not sure how to call his attention over to this thread

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Jeff_G's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Posts
    673
    My experience:

    I commuted and rode a lot of single track in the summer on one mediocre bike. I was riding Theodore Wirth singletrack, and commuting the western suburbs and Downtown Minneapolis.

    Then winter was coming and I thought a fatbike would be better than skinny studded tires. And fatbikes looked like FUN>

    So three years ago in the fall I bought a Trek Farely 7. Expensive for me but I was full time commuting and wanted to ride single track in the winter. A single speed isn't remotely appealing to me. I don't have the chops for it. Especially in Theo. Lots of hills.

    The bike was way faster than I anticipated on the road. LOVED riding in the singletrack, set my Strava record on my first ride on the way home from the bike shop.

    Good all purpose summer tires are key. Barbegazzi's or Jumbo Jims are big, roll well on pavement and work well in dry singletrack.

    Then it snowed. And I figured out pretty quick it was not a snowmobile. Then it got icy. Fat tires are not a solution for ice. I'm old. (47 at the time) I could break a hip and need a walker. Riding was no longer peaceful, meditative or fun when snow or ice was involved. My mind kept spinning. Is that ice? I better slow down. Is that ice? I'm going to fall and break my arm.

    So I sprung for studded tires. BEST thing I ever did. I rode the bike everywhere over everything. Ruts, slush, ice, curbs, icy rutty curbs. 100% confident on the bike commuting in all conditions and even on pure ice singletrack. And by the way, the 45N studded tires are fine albeit a little slow on dry tar. I probably have well over 1,000 dry tar miles on them with no noticeable wear.

    So, I'm riding the most expensive bike I've ever owned with a drivetrain that's more expensive the most bikes I've owned and I'm riding on the salty Minnesota roads daily. Most said the bike would be ruined in a week.

    Went to the Freewheel Winter Bike Expo to a winter maintenance class. Long story short.

    -I wipe my chain after every ride.

    -I clean and oil my chain every few weeks.

    -I have a Hudson sprayer with washer fluid, simple green and water mixed in it. I spray the bike off after salty rides whenever possible.

    I've got three years and probably 6,000 + miles on the bike. I'm on my second chain, cassette and chain ring and there is not one spot of rust I can find on the bike.

    I vote fat with two sets of tires. One fast rolling summer tire for pavement and singletrack. And one set of studded tires for winter.
    "At least I'm enjoying the ride"

    16' Trek 8.4 DS
    16' Farley 7
    and I'm OK admitting..
    16' Sturgis

    Minneapolis MN

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Posts
    806
    One bike and two wheelsets.

    Fat in the winter and 29+ in the summer. You could even swap forks too. If you want to SS find something with sliders so you have options like a Kona Wozo or a Trek Farley

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    139
    Thank you all for the kind words and/or helpful advice, this is just what I was looking for! It is great to hear about winter maintenance tips, and the existence of MORC. Though I initially considered the two wheelsets option, I think I could make it work if I can find a nice studded fat winter tire in 27.5", and use some ++tire like the 3.8" Hodags during the summer

    Does Theodore Wirth park ever get closed? It sounds like a belt-drive would be a nice thing to have for cold weather, yeah? Though chain-only, both the Wozo and Farley have fun geometries for sure.

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Jeff_G's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Posts
    673
    Theo is closed a lot. "If your foot or tire leave a mark on the trail tread the trail is closed"
    "At least I'm enjoying the ride"

    16' Trek 8.4 DS
    16' Farley 7
    and I'm OK admitting..
    16' Sturgis

    Minneapolis MN

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Posts
    24
    Yes, you can do it on one bike (in full disclosure though I am a n+1 guy). I use my Farley with studded tires (a must) to commute in the winter. Plan on cleaning your chain a LOT and then throwing it away in the spring. I also do a full teardown and cleaning every 60 days or so during the winter to ensure rust isn't building in tight corners.
    Last edited by kerns bbo; 04-15-2018 at 01:53 PM.

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 35
    Last Post: 10-15-2018, 10:20 AM
  2. Four seasons of riding in Alaska (in pics)
    By tscheezy in forum Riding Passion
    Replies: 353
    Last Post: 11-05-2016, 06:07 PM
  3. Four Seasons of Horsetooth Mountain Bike Challenge
    By jradin in forum Colorado - Front Range
    Replies: 24
    Last Post: 12-23-2014, 05:28 PM
  4. WNC - Four Seasons in One Week
    By M-U-M in forum North & South Carolina
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 02-21-2014, 05:45 PM
  5. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 02-21-2011, 11:05 PM

Members who have read this thread: 3

Posting Permissions

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

THE SITE

ABOUT MTBR

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2019 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.