Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

Mountain Biking Mountain biking is one of the fastest growing sports in the world. Check out this forum to discuss the latest tips, tricks, gear and equipment in the world of mountain biking.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 08-29-07, 07:04 PM   #1
anoki
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Climbing technique - newb question

My local trails have short, steep, ascents that usually have a lot of loose "cobblestone" near the top. I was having trouble with the front tire having no purchase, so I got some bar ends. ( I am a female, short, and top-heavy, I thought using bar ends would help me with the traction problem)
Now I have great traction on the front tire while standing on climbs, but the back tire is spinning out. I give! Is there some mystery point in between that I just haven't found yet? What's the trick to this loose, cobbley surface?
THX
anoki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-07, 07:21 PM   #2
DirtPedalerB
unofficial roadie
 
DirtPedalerB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Out in the woods you see
Bikes: 2004 Marin bobcat trail, 2006 trek fuel ex7, 2007 iron horse road bike
Posts: 1,440
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
top-heavy are we?

you just have to find a balance point somewhere.
DirtPedalerB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-07, 07:25 PM   #3
mcoine
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: southern oregon
Bikes:
Posts: 2,631
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by anoki View Post
What's the trick to this loose, cobbley surface?
THX
You're doing fine. There is no magical trick to perfectly climb a hill like that. If you can do it sitting you will get the best traction on the rear. Don't worry about the front wheel being on the ground all the time.
mcoine is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-07, 07:31 PM   #4
bac
Senior Member
 
bac's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Pennsylvania
Bikes: Too many to list!
Posts: 7,481
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by anoki View Post
What's the trick to this loose, cobbley surface?
THX
Really, it's all about balance and feel. Practice shifting your weight fore and aft. Practice standing/sitting and practice the transition between the two. Some loose climbs just cannot be ridden. However, with some patience and practice, you'll get more than get you!

... Brad
bac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-07, 08:29 PM   #5
Shiva
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Bikes:
Posts: 29
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
A very common hill position is your butt off the seat, but just barely, and often you're towards the nose of the seat. Also keep your chest parallel to the top tube, this will keep you front tire from lifting. And then tweak this position as needed. Good luck.
Shiva is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-07, 09:09 PM   #6
norco_rider77
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Middleton, Nova Scotia, Canada
Bikes: 2007 Norco Katmandu, building a 2006 Norco Bigfoot
Posts: 684
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
also, a friend of mine who rides a lot told me i should keep my elbows tucked in, i dont know how well it works, since i dont tuck them in while climbing, but its worth a try

and its nice to she some girls in the forum! (and riding)
norco_rider77 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-07, 12:47 PM   #7
ocie
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 58
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
elbows in, sit on the saddle, put your weight on the back tire so it doesnt spin, and pedal like youve never pedaled before.

just be careful you dont flip back.
ocie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-07, 01:20 PM   #8
PistolPete
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Bikes: '03 Trek Fuel 80, '06 Specialized Allez
Posts: 14
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
It may not be the best form/technique/whatever for climbing but I usually raise myself slightly off the seat when I climb, especially if I start to spin out or my front wheel comes up. I find that this allows me to shift my weight forward and backward easier to get the right balance of rear wheel traction and front wheel weight.
PistolPete is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-07, 02:28 PM   #9
Barneco
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 38
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
most tough, steep, loose hills - butt on the seat, kiss the stem, spin like mad

really really steep hills - squat just off of seat, mash on pedals while yanking bars each stroke for traction in the rear. "float" around fore to aft to find a center of gravity that will keep front end from rising too far(it'll come up, just dont' freak)
Barneco is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-07, 05:50 PM   #10
idcruiserman
Mmmmm potatoes
 
idcruiserman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Idaho
Bikes:
Posts: 1,921
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Climb seated, and pull down and back on the handlebars to keep the front wheel down.
idcruiserman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-07, 08:55 AM   #11
prozacm
Newbie
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 3
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
you should try putting it on a higher gear
prozacm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-07, 10:54 AM   #12
junkyard
Fourth Degree Legend
 
junkyard's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: American Gardens Building
Bikes: 2005 Kona Cinder Cone & 2010 Cannondale SuperSix
Posts: 3,826
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by anoki View Post
My local trails have short, steep, ascents that usually have a lot of loose "cobblestone" near the top. I was having trouble with the front tire having no purchase, so I got some bar ends. ( I am a female, short, and top-heavy, I thought using bar ends would help me with the traction problem)
Now I have great traction on the front tire while standing on climbs, but the back tire is spinning out. I give! Is there some mystery point in between that I just haven't found yet? What's the trick to this loose, cobbley surface?
THX
Depending on how short the "short, steep, ascent" is, carrying some momentum up it may not hurt either.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Zumba View Post
Pics please.
It is these comments that cause the women to shy away from this forum. Is your life that dull that you want to harass some poor woman online?
junkyard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-07, 02:26 PM   #13
JosephPaul86
Change=inevitable. ?=+/-
 
JosephPaul86's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Sugar Land, TX
Bikes: MTB, 700c commuter, BMX
Posts: 295
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Dear god. No. Please. No.




When I climb(note: I'm in Houston) I get some momentum up before the hill and lean just enough to keep my COG forward but still seated unless the front starts to lift. One thing I can recommend would be Power Grips or clipless pedals so you can pedal down with one leg as you pull the other up. I know this helps in some situations.
JosephPaul86 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-07, 05:23 PM   #14
anoki
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thanks for all suggestions

You guys are great. I used to whitewater kayak and the people who post on that forum are cruel and unhelpful. I'm going to have fun here!
"Kissing the stem" and "elbows in" helped me quite a bit on my ride yesterday.
anoki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-07, 05:29 PM   #15
DevilsGT2
ಠ_ಠ
 
DevilsGT2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: SF
Bikes: One of the first Aluminum Rockhoppers to come with front suspension.
Posts: 624
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Spin quickly too, but be smooth about it.
DevilsGT2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-07, 05:40 PM   #16
norco_rider77
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Middleton, Nova Scotia, Canada
Bikes: 2007 Norco Katmandu, building a 2006 Norco Bigfoot
Posts: 684
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
if your on a grippy climb, its always fun to try and catwalk up. theres a pretty steep hill as my backyard, and ive made it up the whole 40'? of it catwalking, but as for your climbs, (use stuff thats been said) practice, figure out what you want to try and change, and practice some more. good luck!
norco_rider77 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-04-07, 05:48 PM   #17
SprSonik
Junior Member
 
SprSonik's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Poway, CA
Bikes: Treks: Madone 5.2 roadie and Fuel EX9.9 mtn
Posts: 21
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
climbing pointers.

1- Correct tire pressure...make sure you have enough air in the back tire that you don't risk pinch flats, but not so much that the tire won't deform over objects. That deformation (vs. deflection) is where you get your traction on the climbs.
2- Keep the bike a gear higher than you feel is right. Too much torque in a low gear will guarantee you spin the rear, while taller gearing may take away just enough torque to keep your wheel turning with traction.
3- Use clipless pedals and pull up on the back stroke while trying to maintin a smooth pedal motion. Too much mashing on the down stroke can make you spin if you hit lose traction right as you hit the power point.
4- Momentum will only help on short hills, and trying to get going too fast before the hill forces you to shift out of a high gear at the bottom of the hill...not good unless you are really smooth
SprSonik is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-05-07, 01:29 PM   #18
delay
I am an incurable.
 
delay's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Champaign, IL
Bikes: IRO Mark V pro (RIP), Bianchi Giro, Giant Xtc1, Redline Conquest Pro, Kelly Deluxe singlespeed.
Posts: 993
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete Fagerlin View Post
My advice is to be skeptical about some of the advice in this thread.

Sometimes watching a video can help, even though video tends to flatten the terrain.

That video makes me feel ashamed by my climbing skills. I think I need to ride my bike more often.
__________________
www.oldsylebeer.com
delay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-06-07, 04:43 PM   #19
anoki
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I wish I were 5 years old again....like Pete

Great videos, thanks!
anoki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-06-07, 04:52 PM   #20
BenLi
Hardrocker
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 1,569
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
nice video. Is the one in orange is you?
BenLi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-06-07, 05:27 PM   #21
Aaron_F
A guy who rides bikes
 
Aaron_F's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Mid-Missouri
Bikes:
Posts: 459
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Cool video.

To answer the original question, I've found that getting as low as possible--"kissing" the stem; elbows in; using my bar-ends; butt barely off the seat--and a lower than usual gear help, as do very low tire pressures. I've been running Kenda Kinetics Sitck-E's lately with thick tubes, and about 25psi (I'm 150#) and I'm finally beginning to hook up on all the annoying loose rocks that have frustrated me so much in the past. By keeping my gearing lower than what feels right, I'm able to instantly get my cranks spinning--but, thankfully, my tires gripping--at the moment I need to.
Aaron_F is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-06-07, 10:18 PM   #22
sirtigersalot
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 624
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
to add another climbing question: how do you deal with obstacles on steep uphills, small roots no problem, but logs and larger rocks... i can get my front wheel up but on steeper climbs my rear wheel gets stuck on the obstacle, and i can't pull it up cause no momentum, somtimes i can just spinn up things but somtimes i either just get stuck, or my rear wheel spins out, and most of the time i manage to unclip in time,

hope this isnt jacking the thread, its about climbing
sirtigersalot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-06-07, 10:21 PM   #23
Dannihilator
User Title
 
Dannihilator's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Annandale, New Jersey
Bikes: 2014 Surly Steamroller, 1989 Nishiki Altron
Posts: 19,421
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Best way for this is trial and error.
__________________
Signature.
Dannihilator is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-08-07, 06:23 PM   #24
rufus
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Bikes:
Posts: 565
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
it's not so much a matter of shifting your weight. shift too far back, and the front wheel lifts, too far forward and the rear tire has no traction. that's a delicate balance point to find.

rather than shifting your weight, try remaining seated in the saddle, but pull your(there's no delicate way to phrase this, so no ofense intended) chest down toward the top tube. In effect, this is the "kissing the stem" mentioned earlier. the steeper the hill, the lower toward the bar you go.

it keeps your weight back over the rear tire, but also weights the front end, keeping the front down.

I absolutely love bar ends, I don't know why they've gone so out of favor. extremely effective, and also offer alternate hand positions.

Last edited by rufus; 09-08-07 at 06:29 PM.
rufus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-08-07, 06:56 PM   #25
Terrapin Ben
I'm simply not credible.
 
Terrapin Ben's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Atlanta, GA
Bikes: A blue one and a black one.
Posts: 612
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
old school barends make your bike look like a bull. i think that maybe why they've gone out of favor. i think they own face as well. also, sliding forward in your saddle on very steep climbs helps a lot as does putting your thumbs on the top of your bars. happy trails!
Terrapin Ben is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:02 PM.