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How deep of snow can you ride in?

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How deep of snow can you ride in?

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Old 12-25-17, 02:58 PM
  #1  
mdadams1
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How deep of snow can you ride in?

Just gota fat bike and waiting for snow. What air pressure do you run in tires in snow?
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Old 12-25-17, 05:39 PM
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If it is fresh snow, with no tracks, 4" is about my max. You are making tracks through 4" of snow and that is a lot of resistance to pedal against.
I run 4-5 pounds because I have tubes, but some of my tubeless riding buddies go as low as 3-3 1/2.
The best riding is after the snowmobiles packing down the snow. You can roll faster than on dirt and the roots and rocks are covered over, so it gets to be fast and smooth with lots of traction.
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Old 12-25-17, 10:21 PM
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Daniel4
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Confirmed. 4in max fresh snow. 4 to 5psi.
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Old 01-03-18, 10:00 AM
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Psi? Less. Rider weight, rim width? Running tubeless? Tire width?
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Old 01-13-18, 08:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Daniel4 View Post
Confirmed. 4in max fresh snow. 4 to 5psi.
SOoooo ... if I get a Fat Bike I won't be able to make pedal tracks in the snow like I did as a kid?
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Old 01-14-18, 07:30 AM
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13 inches fresh now on the road (combination of fresh and tire tracks) worked great yesterday. Tried it on the towpath (no tracks to get moving) and it was an epic fail.
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Old 01-14-18, 08:39 AM
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In addition to the points about tires, tubeless, rims, weight ... Not all snow is created equal, light fluffy pow is ridable when much deeper than heavy wet snow.

With all that said, I'm able to ride 4 inch deep snow consistently and can ride deep snow depending on the condition of the snow.

One last consideration, is the riders strength and bike handling, snow conditions that are ridable for a strong/experience rider will be unridable for a n00bie.
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Old 01-14-18, 08:41 AM
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I was hoping to find the answer this week end, then the temperature jumped up and rain melted most of the area I wanted to put tracks in.
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Old 01-15-18, 12:08 PM
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Are we talking powder or mash potatoes? Chunder from a snowplow? Granular stuff? Flat or slope?

No single answer on this one. I've ridden on snow deep enough to leave the pedal imprint on the side. Had to push on less deep snow.
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Old 01-15-18, 02:51 PM
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These numbers don't sound significantly different than 2" MTB tires. But I imagine there is a certain snow density where a fat bike can ride on top and an MTB would sink.
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Old 01-15-18, 03:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Kontact View Post
These numbers don't sound significantly different than 2" MTB tires. But I imagine there is a certain snow density where a fat bike can ride on top and an MTB would sink.
It isn't about how deep of snow you can ride in, it is about how much can you enjoy it.
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Old 01-16-18, 08:46 AM
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Originally Posted by frozenk View Post
it isn't about how deep of snow you can ride in, it is about how much can you enjoy it.
+1
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Old 01-23-18, 02:22 PM
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Today I tested the limits of deep snow... My Dillinger 4 tires couldn't keep my riding in 8 inches of fresh snow. If I was going down a slope, it was OK. But I couldn't get any traction to push up a hill or on the flat sections of trail. I had the front at 3 psi, and found I dropped the rear to 0 psi. I ended up walking when I couldn't get on plowed trails/roads.
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Old 01-23-18, 02:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Hypno Toad View Post
Today I tested the limits of deep snow... My Dillinger 4 tires couldn't keep my riding in 8 inches of fresh snow. If I was going down a slope, it was OK. But I couldn't get any traction to push up a hill or on the flat sections of trail. I had the front at 3 psi, and found I dropped the rear to 0 psi. I ended up walking when I couldn't get on plowed trails/roads.
That is a lot of snow.
Is it because you just can't pedal?
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Old 01-23-18, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by PdalPowr View Post
That is a lot of snow.
Is it because you just can't pedal?
The rear tire just spins out on you - no traction. I think you could ride these conditions with 5" tires and bigger knobs on the tires. Surly's Lou is a rear specific designed tire for these kind of conditions. I know a lot of people that love the Bud and Lou combo for snow riding.

Funny enough, I'm going to end up with more tires for my fatbike than the rest of my bikes combined
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Old 01-23-18, 02:51 PM
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^^^ Go up to 2 XL.
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Old 01-23-18, 10:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Hypno Toad View Post
Today I tested the limits of deep snow... My Dillinger 4 tires couldn't keep my riding in 8 inches of fresh snow. If I was going down a slope, it was OK. But I couldn't get any traction to push up a hill or on the flat sections of trail. I had the front at 3 psi, and found I dropped the rear to 0 psi. I ended up walking when I couldn't get on plowed trails/roads.
My experience also. We rode out to LTD in Hopkins for a couple of beers. I couldn't handle that snow at all. Back wheel kept spinning when I tried to start and when I did get going any rut took me out. Luckily it was only a block and a half to a plowed street and we were able to ride just fine there! I pretty much walked it the last block home.
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Old 01-24-18, 07:03 AM
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Originally Posted by reverborama View Post
My experience also. We rode out to LTD in Hopkins for a couple of beers. I couldn't handle that snow at all. Back wheel kept spinning when I tried to start and when I did get going any rut took me out. Luckily it was only a block and a half to a plowed street and we were able to ride just fine there! I pretty much walked it the last block home.
I saw a report for a friend that went into Theo on Tuesday night. He was running Bud and Lou 4.8 and was able to ride some of the trail, but everybody on 4" tires needed to walk. They rode the short trail south of the Luce Line and bailed as soon as they got back to the Luce Line.
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Old 01-29-18, 07:50 AM
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I want to ask about your experiences with deep snow and fat tires:

Do you find it easier to get through deep snow when you reverse the tire pattern on rear tire? Making the rear tire more of a paddle wheel.

Here's a post from the makers of the Dillinger - 45 NRTH: https://45nrth.com/blog/post/pro-tip...tire-direction (yes, this is a promo post)

I typically have my winter tires set up like this post suggests. However, this winter I've been working with a LBS to convert to tubeless (my Marge Lite rims are not tubeless compatible and I want some experienced help). The person that made the tubeless conversion had the rear tire set up like the front tire, good for rolling resistance, bad for traction/grip when pushing in deep snow.

My post above about walking because of 8 inches of fresh snow was on my way back to the LBS for help with a leak in the rim of my rear wheel (free of charge). When they returned my bike, the tech set up the rear tire per the link above and I found it much easier to push through deep snow. Unfortunately, we'd had a big melt day and the snow conditions were very different, so it wasn't a great comparison.

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Old 02-01-18, 06:50 AM
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There is no magic number that applies to everyone. It all depends on the weight of the person. 3psi for a 200lb person isn't the same as 3psi for a 140 lb person. It's something that has to be experimented with individually.
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Old 02-11-18, 08:26 PM
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I tried to pull off the path on my Pugsley today by Minnehaha. Don't know how deep the snow was, but it was deeper than 4", and heavy, and I ground to a halt real quick.
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Old 02-11-18, 08:58 PM
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Tried riding my fatbike with Mission Command tires around the yard today. nearly 40, snow was wet and heavy. 2-4" wasn't too bad, but once I got in the 6-8" stuff...forget it, rear tire would spin out. I dropped pressure down pretty low, I'm only 165lbs.

Still was fun to play around. I think in fluffy powder, i would have kept going in the deeper snow. Packed trails? I would have been fine at slower speeds, only limited by the tires (not the best, but they worked well on my driveway which is packed snow) Almost tempted to go ride the snowmobile trails, but... that might not be welcomed lol.
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Old 02-12-18, 08:43 AM
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Same exact thing would happen to a little 4 door sedan.
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Old 02-13-18, 01:06 PM
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I think fat bikes really excel on trails that have either been groomed or gone over by a snowmobile. Fresh snow is tough no matter what.
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