Riding in the snow? - Motorcycle Forum
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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 12:14 AM Thread Starter
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Riding in the snow?

I am just curious, I live where there is a winter full of snow. Is riding in the snow doable or is it too dangerous? Or do you have to wait til its a nice, clear day?
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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 04:11 AM
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Well, I have done it but to be very honest I was a fool for doing it. It is very dangerous. Especially when it comes to acceleration and braking. Just going down the road not so bad. But those two areas are where the real trouble can happen and happen so fast you can't do a thing. In my case it was go that short distance over a mountain pass when an early fall snow storm moved in or go nearly 300 miles to the next pass to get around it. I would never even consider doing it on a daily basis. Motorcycles are dangerous enough in the best of conditions and become questionable just in rain. Snow shouldn't even be considered in my opinion. But that's like saying do as I say and not as I do too.

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post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 05:22 AM
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We've got folks here in CT who ride in "Winter;" Some more reckless and foolishly than others. If the roads are clear of ice and snow (Parking lots and driveways too) It is then only a question of how well you and your bike tolerate the cold temperatures. Having the right amount and type of gear is important.

Do it if you want, but personally, if I were going to do it, I think I would have a "beater bike" that I drove in "Winter," and preserve my "all chromed out" bagger for the nicer weather.

I could see myself tooling around on a 500cc flat seated Kawasaki or something, in Winter.
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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 05:33 AM
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I got caught in a snow storm many years ago on my BMW coming home.
Most dangerous ride I ever did.
And the aluminum parts never looked the same again after getting slathered with road salt mush.
No thanks.
Been there. Done that. Don't wanna do it again.

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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 05:46 AM
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I wouldn't ride in the snow.

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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 06:07 AM
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I have a sidecar on my Harley Dyna and if there is enough traction to move, I'll ride but it is more of "an adventure sport" rather than practical transportation. There are people up here with Urals, sidecar, and 2-wheel-drive who ride in all conditions.

I grew up in southern Ontario in the 1960s and a motorcycle was my only transportation. On average there were only 5 to 15 days a year when it was too icy to ride.
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post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 10:27 AM Thread Starter
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Alright thanks guys!
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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 10:45 AM
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Riding in the snow is certainly not recommend, even on my sidecar. Still in the depths of a long winter, we all get stupid from cabin fever.
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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 11:52 AM
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Snow to me is not nearly as bad as black ice.

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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 11:55 AM
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As my avatar to the left shows, I've no problem riding in the snow. If the roads are dry I will ride. If they are slick, riding on two wheels is dangerous. If you fall, you may get ran over, for example. But if the roads are dry I will ride. I'll take my XT350 out on the frozen rivers, lakes, and trails. I'll ride the dry streets and roads to get there.

A secondary concern is if they use road salt where you live. They do here. So I will not take my nicer bikes out in it. Only the XT sees winter riding, and it gets a thorough bath once I get home, to wash off the road salt.
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post #11 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-26-2016, 04:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Badlands-4-2 View Post
Riding in the snow is certainly not recommend, even on my sidecar. Still in the depths of a long winter, we all get stupid from cabin fever.
LOVE the second picture!!!!

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post #12 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-26-2016, 08:34 AM
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I ride all winter in Pennsylvania and New Jersey if I can, cold I can deal with until it gets downright stupid out but 2 things scare me enough to get me back in the car, snow and black ice.

Black ice is scary, very scary, it will take out a 4 wheel vehicle instantly, with no warning,let alone a 2 wheel. My commute takes me over a couple of small mountains ( ~1200 ft), at times the weather on top of those is different from the bottom, I have no problems riding in 20 degree dry weather but 35 degrees and wet at my house in the morning scares me, that may well be below freezing on the top of the ridge!
Snow is not something I would intentionally ride in, it's just too slippery if your doing anything but going straight ahead. I did get caught twice last year, both time I ended up doing a few miles on somewhat snow covered roads to get home, it was NOT fun, but I was able to make it work, but that was on a small bike that I could muscle around with my feet too, I'm not sure it would go so well with the big one I ride now.

Be careful...

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post #13 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-26-2016, 08:39 AM
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Since we are doing bikes in the snow pictures....
This December day was actually not too bad, it was below freezing but snow was melting in the bright sun, the roads were mostly clear and dry, but there was snow around if you looked for it, I hit a few icy patches on shady side roads so I decided to get back on the Interstate to finish the ride, that was much safer.
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post #14 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-26-2016, 08:47 AM
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Black ice nearly got me once. Was riding two up very early in the morning before the sun even thought about popping up and was going over an overpass. Next thing I know the bike is sliding toward the edge of the bridge. Since I ride in the left track of a lane I had room to just pulled the clutch in and hoped my guardian angel was right there. The sudden change of engine speed woke my "would-be wife" up who asked what was wrong. I just said, "don't move and inch" which she complied and we were soon off the bridge without a problem. But any kind of correction would have been a disaster. Maybe even a slight wiggle from my passenger. Had several mornings like that so I learned to approach that overpass with the clutch in right off the bat. It's why I ultimately decided that riding in anything below 34º in California because of the fog that was also present, probably wasn't a good idea so I stopped and caged it. Just wasn't the same commute though when I had to.

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post #15 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-26-2016, 09:11 AM
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Yikes, that's the kind of black ice story that scares me!

I had black ice take me out in my cage years ago, I was working midnight's, going home at 0700, the roads had frozen overnight but thawed out as the sun rose, there were accidents here and there but for the most part the roads were fine. I was driving 30 mph, exiting the airport, the road curves round and goes UNDER the highway.. solid black ice there, I slid slowly but totally uncontrollably, I tried clutch, brakes, steering, none had any appreciable effect. I slowly slid across the roadway and down to the bottom of the banked road and hit the curb and bent a wheel and broke a tie rod. It was so icy in that underpass that a cop pulled up and got out of his car, then watched as it slid IN park sideways on the backed road until it hit the curb too.

I learned a valuable lesson that morning.

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post #16 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-26-2016, 12:11 PM
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I've done it on my dirt bike, and sometimes it's not all that fun.

Street bike - I have no desire to try it. Call me a wimp, that's OK.
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post #17 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-26-2016, 12:55 PM
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"Snow?"
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post #18 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-26-2016, 03:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eye_m_no_angel View Post
"Snow?"
Yea, think of it as cold sand. Get the picture?

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post #19 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-26-2016, 03:39 PM
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Cold SLIPPERY sand!!!!

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post #20 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-26-2016, 04:01 PM
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Oh, THAT stuff!

I love to look at snow.

On the Internet.

From Florida.

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post #21 of 30 (permalink) Old 10-04-2016, 09:04 PM
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post #22 of 30 (permalink) Old 11-29-2016, 08:23 PM
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Fresh Snow on a dirt bike is a blast. Packed snow on road is a disaster on a road bike. Black ice is a no no on either a road bike or dirt bike.
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post #23 of 30 (permalink) Old 11-30-2016, 09:55 AM
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I have been in the snow. Got stranded on Lizard head pass in Colorado on June 22 one year. I spent most of the day under a tree waiting for the roads to clear enough to ride. I have been stuck on the Snowy Mountain Range in Wyoming for a while due to the same thing and this one was the second week of July . When you ride in the mountains, the snow can hit at anytime. Keep an eye on the weather and don't be afraid to hold up somewhere warm until it is safe to travel.
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post #24 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-01-2016, 08:05 AM
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Except if you're riding a Triumph Tiger 800 Snow Bike. Link: Ice, ice, baby | MCN

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post #25 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-01-2016, 09:43 AM
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Cubesock I see you live in Illinois. In Illinois with the excessive amount of salt they use on the roads, the snow isn't the main problem. Nevermind the other traffic soaking you to the bone with the below freezing salty road spray. Slush is like riding through wet cement.
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post #26 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-01-2016, 10:07 AM
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I never minded riding in snow but slush scared me to death.

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post #27 of 30 (permalink) Old 12-06-2016, 11:31 AM
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Quote:
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I never minded riding in snow but slush scared me to death.
yea, slush sucks, Eisenhower tunnel in CO. It can be sunny going in, you never know what you will see on the other side. Went in on the east side, came out in a solid 4 inches of slush. I still don't know how I managed to follow those cage tracks through the slush for 4 miles until I could take the next exit.
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post #28 of 30 (permalink) Old 02-14-2017, 08:16 AM
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Duel-sport! LOL
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post #29 of 30 (permalink) Old 02-14-2017, 01:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eye_m_no_angel View Post
Oh, THAT stuff!

I love to look at snow.

On the Internet.

From Florida.

Same here in Mexico

Last time I see snow here in Matamoros it was 12 years ago. It was December 25 and it starts snowing at 10 p.m., when the family was gathered and having dinner. It had not snowed since about 80 years.
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post #30 of 30 (permalink) Old 02-14-2017, 01:41 PM
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Well, you couldn't have picked a better day to have snow down there.

I've been to Matamoros! When I was a kid I stayed with my Aunt for awhile in Brownsville and then near Mission.
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