How to Ride in the Mud
To most UK mountain bikers mud is a friend and a foe. Getting soaking wet and coated in mud while slipping and sliding down a trail is what mountain biking is all about and I personaly love it.
That being said, what I don't like is unexpectedly face planting into the ground when my front wheel decides to exit stage left at the speed of light.
So here a a few very simple things I do when things get soggy to improve grip.
- Lower your tyre preassure. This is the easiest thing you can do to help with grip and its free. It makes a big diffrence especialy at the front when cornering. Try to always run a little less preassure in the front than back. Its prety simple, the softer the tyre the more it deforms, the more contact that it makes with the ground and thus the more sticking power it gives you. 👍
- Mud specific tyres. Most mountain bike tyres are designed to perform in a variety of conditions meaning that they may compromis weight over durability or speed over grip. Mud specific tyres are as it says on the tin made for mud. Designed to run on lower preassure and with "shedding" in mind there is maybe no better fix for staying upright in the mud. By having larger knobly bits with bigger spaces between them the tyre can shed mud quicker so the trad can sink in. Yes it'a faf to try change your tyres and it costs too but it is well worth it and some arent as exlensive as you might think. A cheap mud specific tyre will be alot better in ghe slop than an expensive allrounder.
- How you ride. Its pretty obvious but keep your head up and be prepared for whats comming. Stay loose and upright on the bike. Dont snatch the breaks. This goes hand in hand with knkwing whats comming. Keep momentum and use smoother pedal strokes.