It's all fun either way!
In lots of parts of the United States it feels as though summer is having a tough time getting here. There are places in northern New England that still have some snow on their ski slopes. While we’re all still thrilled about this past winter let’s revisit some icy, snowy times!
At root this is just a fantastic fun video of two friends hooning around on frozen lakes, through snowy forests, school playgrounds, hockey rinks? You know, like you do. There are some other points to consider, though, as you watch these two sort-of mismatched bikes tear up varied terrain.
The sport bike (is that an R6?) and the dirt bike both are shod in studded knobby tires, the street machine gets blocky sneakers and the dirt bike a bit knobbier. They both do great on the wide open and disturbingly wet melty ice. Once that terrain changes, though, and they start riding through old packed snow the sport bike gets bogged in the drifts.
This is an obviously professionally-produced video and I don’t have to tell you that rolling through a playground or down a ski slope on your motorcycle is a bad idea. I will say, though, that getting your studded bike out on trustworthy ice is some of the most fun you’ll ever have on two wheels. Studded tires on ice have better traction than sticky tires on hot pavement. It is a thorough hoot!
You can have ice tires made by a pro, or you can buy them set up, or you can buy something like “kold kutters” and stud your tires yourself. Note that if you’re going to participate in ice races, there are specifications about which studs are allowed in races. I can tell you from first-hand experience that while sheet metal screws do sorta mostly work as ice studs, your bike will spit those studs out at speed and they are a pretty dangerous projectile.
If you’re using those, put a dab of superglue on each screw before you install it, and tell everyone you’re riding with to put their visors down and beware of flying sheet metal screws. Or do what I did, and just let everyone there take turns on the same bike, and then it’s no big deal.
Note, also, that although the bikes in this video do roll over concrete and pavement, that is the very best way to dull your studs. Just a hundred or so feet on pavement and your ice studs will be way less useful on ice. Ice-studded tires have terrible grip on pavement so you’re going to want to stay off it anyway.
Now is the time to start planning your icey adventures for next winter! You have plenty of time to buy a beater bike, and some ice studs, and maybe a tire machine, and some spare wheels...