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Old 09-20-05, 11:11 PM   #1
kritter
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first mud ride

Well its been raining a bit in so cal and the route I normally ride starts out in some loose dirt. The loose dirt turned into nasty clay that stuck to my tires and jammed in the fork crown and rear so that the bike wouldnt even roll...so I had to get off, roll it backwards to get all the packed up mud out and then go again until it packed up. This shenanigans went on about every 5ft so I gave up and walked to where the dirt changed to something rideable...is this the norm with wet soil riding? Should I drop a tire size? I am runing cont. velocity 2.3 front and rear.

the dirt that stayed packed on must have added about 5lbs to each wheel and killed me more then usual on the climbs....might have to find a new route until this dries out.
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Old 09-20-05, 11:24 PM   #2
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That happend to me about a month ago! Evil deceiving mud caught me by surprise, i though i could just continue to ride through it but clamped to my tires, built up and eventually clogged up to my v-brakes so i couldn't move. My tire would have grown 2 inches in all directions. I have 2.1 panaracers on the rear and I blame them for this. Took whole bike apart, brakes off, tyres off, every thing! Took at least 3 hours to clean out everything although my fork never recovered, thanks to crappy seals, it lost all its travel. DO NOT RIDE IN THE MUD ANYONE!

Best thing to clean down the tyres afterwards is to leave them dry, then ride them out on ashfelt, if you try and clean them straight away ,its like picking s*** off with a stick
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Old 09-20-05, 11:40 PM   #3
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Not necessarily the norm with wet riding at all (live in Seattle - trust me

In general it may be good to avoid riding on that soil type in those conditions for at least a couple of reasons. Trail damage over the long haul and excessive wear and tear on your equipment. Personally I would not recommend changing your tire size to compensate (definitely can make a significant difference though - many 2.1's have profiles like 2.3's etc etc depending on the manufacturer), rather tread as lightly as possible and work around the conditions/soil types.

I am definitely not down with SO CAL riding ettiquette and soil/trail sensativity though so definitely get a second opinion at your local shop.

If bored and interested in some pics of full on mud trauma in SW Utah check some pics from this spring (Gooseberry Mesa/JEM Trail/Zion Natl Park area). This was on a new road approaching the trailhead, we bagged the ride as didn't want to thrash the singletrack.

http://gprior.eskilade.com/gallery/s...2005_0428-Zion

Check out the riding in the ZION area if interested - absolutely gorgeous and pretty unique stuff, just a couple hour drive outside of Vegas.

http://gprior.eskilade.com/gallery/a...bumListPage=11

Take it easy.
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Old 09-21-05, 06:55 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kritter
Well its been raining a bit in so cal and the route I normally ride starts out in some loose dirt. The loose dirt turned into nasty clay that stuck to my tires and jammed in the fork crown and rear so that the bike wouldnt even roll...so I had to get off, roll it backwards to get all the packed up mud out and then go again until it packed up. This shenanigans went on about every 5ft so I gave up and walked to where the dirt changed to something rideable...is this the norm with wet soil riding? Should I drop a tire size? I am runing cont. velocity 2.3 front and rear.

the dirt that stayed packed on must have added about 5lbs to each wheel and killed me more then usual on the climbs....might have to find a new route until this dries out.
Ahh, don't you love our mud? Mud tires will not help you with the clay mud we have in some parts around here. The mud will stick no matter what tire you use especially if it gets over 2" deep and it can also get so thick on the drivetran that you will not be able to pedal. It may even get cloged between the stays and between the fork down tubes (like you found out) preventing the tires from turning.

And no. Not all mud is the same (depends on the type of soil). They clay stuff we have just compleatly sucks. There some areas where the mud will not stick but it is way to slippery to get any sort of traction and then we also have areas that may get muddy but offer good traction and does not stick like the clay.

Since you have the wonderful clay type on your route then you should find a different route when it is raining.
.



p.s. For the amount of rain we get around here there realy is no reason to get mud specific tires. Maybe more towards the end of fall and during the winter months if it rains for a week or more but right now we definitly do not need to swap out tires.
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Old 09-21-05, 07:59 AM   #5
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thanks for the info. as far as trail damage...the tire wasnt digging into the mud...it was picking up about a quarter inch off the top just like when I would normally ride through when it was dry.
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Old 09-21-05, 08:55 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kritter
thanks for the info. as far as trail damage...the tire wasnt digging into the mud...it was picking up about a quarter inch off the top just like when I would normally ride through when it was dry.
Yup, clay sucks, er, sticks! The problem around here is that you can't tell it's tacky until you hit it a lot of times. Welcome to MTB hell....
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Old 09-21-05, 09:25 AM   #7
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I raced a few times at the Muddpuppy in Edmonton. When it was dry, it was unbelievably fast with loads of grip. When it was wet, the race earned its name. Pure clay for 10 km, x 2+ laps. One of my favourite sections was about 10 feet wide, 15 feet long, with a rise of about 3 feet over that distance. I came around the corner and saw a pile of bodies and bikes trying to get up this "climb". Folks would try and ride up, get about 3' then fall over because the mud had packed into their wheels so tightly they couldn't ride. I stuck to the side of the trail, but it still took me over a minute to walk up the slope. After the race I [and several others] took our bikes and threw them into the river. That still didn't dissolve the mud, so I had to scrape it off with a stick while it was submerged. I <3 MTB.
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Old 09-21-05, 11:32 AM   #8
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Sticky clay needs a tyre with widely separated knobbles and curved recesses. Most decent manufacturers have a mud tyre. You can also wax your frame to reduce adhesion.
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Old 09-21-05, 02:09 PM   #9
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Clinging clay is a problem, and As you have found out, Ruins a good ride. There are a few tips though to cure the problem. First of all, not all bikes are prone to mud Suck. My old Bianchi Hardtail does not clog up, and this is my winter bike. First of all run a narrow tyre, pumped to 50psi. A 1.8 or even a 1.5 is the size I am thinking of. If mud suck occurs, find the sloppier areas, where the mud will fall off the bike. If the bike does clog, Don't think of pushing it-Pick it up on your shoulder and walk to a wetter or drier area.

Mud is the highlight of the winter, but The Clinging kind of mud will only occur about twice a year, and Yes It can occur in summer too. Two choices- pack up and go home or pick your route and conquer the stuff

Edit--- Reason for the narrow tyre at 50psi-- It will bite through the Gloop to the hard surface a few inches or 6 down below the surface and you will get grip. The 50psi is so the tyre will not get snakebites as its a lower volume tyre with the same weight, and the Ones I use are panaracer Mud Pros in 1.8 and Conti Crosscountry in 1.5. Both work and also give more clearance tyre to frame so mud cannot collect.

Last edited by stapfam; 09-21-05 at 02:15 PM.
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Old 09-21-05, 07:23 PM   #10
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Welcome to the wonderful world of MUD....

I'm a Native, apparently....
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Old 09-21-05, 08:03 PM   #11
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Well I LOVE riding through mud. To me it's a religious/esoteric experience. I use Tioga Factory XC 2.1 in front and Tioga Red Phoenix 1.9 in the back and work like a charm.

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