ROCKING MY FRONT WHEEL AROUND A TIGHT UPHILL SWITCHBACK Once I got confident in my track stands, it became much easier to learn to 'rock' my front wheel, a skill that I now use frequently in all sorts of technical situations. I recorded this 50-second video clip yesterday of me rocking my front wheel in the Figure 8 segment of Cannon River Offroad Cycling and Trails – CROCT's Sechler Pk trail in my hometown of Northfield. You'll see me using a few track stands and ratcheting in the sequence as well. Who loves rocking while rolling? I learned all of these skills from the courses and mini-modules that are part of a @ryankleech Connection membership at: mtbskills.net/ryan
BIG BOULDERS = PLAYGROUND EQUIPMENT Whenever I see a big boulder around town now, I want to see if I can play on it. I recorded this video last week at the entrance to a park in town where #croctmtb has an #mtb trail. Track stands, backwards hopping, ratcheting, and the 3/4 pedal stroke make it possible. I learned all of these skills from the courses and mini-modules that are part of a @ryankleech Connection membership at: mtbskills.net/ryan
If you armor up, let 99% of the air out of your tires, & drag the rear brake while pedaling, riding icy trails can be a fun challenge. I spent over 30 minutes sessioning this corner on CROCT's Sechler Pk trail this week. After a dozen+ fails, I was able to make it up 3 times: once cheating to the left, once cheating to the right, and once right up the middle.
Side-to-side bike/body separation is a basic skill for holding a line on skinnies or any narrow terrain. The increased feeling of stability at low speeds increases one's confidence, too. Steering a bike by its seat & riding no-handed helps demonstrate how a bike can be controlled this way. I created this video yesterday when a rider who was having a difficult time riding a narrow snowy rut in a fat bike race posted his frustration in our MTBSN Facebook group at bit.ly/MTBSNFB
A 50-sec video of my driveway braking skills practice session yesterday. It's based on the article "3 braking drills that will add speed to your riding" by @leelikesbikes, posted to the how-to category of @mtb_project's blog I definitely need some work on getting my heels down more for drill #3, what I refer to as 'hop-heavy braking.' @leelikesbikes was right when he wrote, "This is a double complex move! But it’s double rad." I also need to find a different surface other than pavement to practice., eg gravel or hard-packed snow.
We had a lot of rain on Xmas here in southern Minnesota that completely ruined our several inches of fluffy snow. But as the temps dropped, the melting snow froze, creating some unusual ice. I found this mini-skating rink near my house that coated a sidewalk, curb, and access street. The gradual slope made it an ideal traction challenge. I kept tightening my approach to make it more difficult. I'm using ratcheting, track stands, and rocking skills. And you'll see the difference between tires inflated at 10 psi vs 1-2 psi. But the main technique I deployed was to constantly apply the rear brake with just enough pressure to prevent any wheel spin. I call it 'dragging' the rear brake since that seems to best describe it, ie, applying steady power/pedaling while the brake is engaged just the right amount. I learned this technique riding mototrials, most typically on slippery off-cambers where steady power via the throttle while dragging the brakes could help prevent the rear wheel from slipping out underneath you. 1-min video, no slowmo: