With a few helpful hints you can go from snow plough to powder king.
Mountain biking in snow is a whole other world of fun.
Four seasons, one bike. We’re firm believers that mountain biking is a 12-month thing, so when it snows in winter time, we ride. And to let you in on a little secret, riding in snow is when an eMTB can really come into its own.
To know more about carving powder turns, Guido Tschugg brings us up to speed on making a snow day count.
“Snow days are when an eMTB has a real advantage over MTB bikes. The pedal-assist makes it easier to ride in the snow - you’ll be surprised where they can take you.”
Bike setup mirrors that of ‘normal’ use, but over the years Guido has worked out a few tweaks to get the best out of his Mountain Cross 7.
“It’s the right amount of output from the motor. Boost mode tends to spin the rear wheel too much and eco isn’t enough. Also using trail mode instead of boost prevents the battery from draining too quickly, which in cold weather is important.”
“I use mud tyres with a strong carcass and run a tubeless setup. This allows me to lower my tyre pressure as much as possible. You can risk it a little more because if the snow is deep enough, you won’t have rock strikes to worry about."
"You slide a lot in the snow and are sure to fall off a few times, so riding on flat pedals allows you to get your feet out super easily and react faster. You can control the connection between you and bike better and it’s easier to dab a foot if needed.”
“In snow you need to remain as relaxed as possible and try not to fight the changes of direction in the bike. Your body position should be similar to that of riding in mud - keep your weight more to the rear of the bike."
“The deeper the snow, the more I tend to lean back. It takes practice to find the balance between leaning back far enough but not too much, so that you start to lose control of the front wheel.”
“Successful cornering boils down to controlling your entry speed. Using more rear brake than front, brake upright, in a straight line, and earlier than normal to slow down in plenty of time."
“In the corner I drop my outside foot to weight the tyres for grip and to prevent the bike from sliding away from underneath me if traction breaks. Another tip is to always look ahead - look where you want to go and not where your front wheel is at.”
“Riding in snow is fun and not something to take too seriously,” finishes Guido. “It’s just a cool chance to ride your bike in new terrain. It takes practice to gain confidence and although you’ll never get it quite right you will have a good laugh doing it.”
So just enjoy the ride because even an hour outside will always be better than sitting at home on the sofa!