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East Siders, Tell Me About Ice

Discussion in 'Motorcycle Talk' started by Apex, Nov 23, 2012.

  1. Specifically, hitting ice/black ice in a corner. It's my biggest fear, and somehow I've lucked out riding to work on 25F mornings and never hitting any.

    I obviously minimize lean angle and keep a constant speed through corners to avoid getting the back end out; the vector is kept as straight as possible. Any other tips? There's a couple vids out there of guys hitting big patches of it and dumping their bikes - nasty stuff.
  2. When I get on something slick I think could put me down, I pull in the clutch so my drive wheel isn't pushing and I will often skim my feet along as outriggers to catch the bike should it try to lowside. Because the surface is slick, your boots will skid on the surface without sticking, as they would on dry pavement.

    Mostly, on the East Coast, we don't ride street bikes during the winter. We may ride dualsports with an aggressive tread, though.

  3. Stay out of the wheel tracks and ride the center or preferably the outside edge of the turn where the gravel has been thrown to, and car tires haven't polished the ice. You will also be taking the curve at the widest radius. Also helps to drop your tire pressure about 5psi.
  4. PeteN95

    PeteN95 Moderator Staff Member

    If you hit black ice at much lean angle at all, you're going to be down before you know it. Otherwise, treat any slide the same, stear into it and try to stay up. Don't chop the throttle, but roll off if you're using very much. Don't stand up and ride into a solid object, better to try and lean more and low side than hitting it head on.
  5. KevinD

    KevinD Modulator Staff Member


    Or a Ural with a side car & 2-wheel drive...

  6. Good tips, thanks.

    Transported, do you mean big nobs or studs?
  7. #failingtounderstandthelogicbehindthis :scratchea
  8. ^^^ He's a fair-weather rider.

    Either full knobbies, as on a motocross bike, or smaller knobs, as on a dualsport bike. I didn't know anybody who actually put studs in their tires.
  9. james1300

    james1300 Track School Dazed

    Ya can't see it. It gives no warning. If it is cold enough to freeze, don't ride.
    (EDIT) If there is FOG count on ICE.
    Bridge's and overpasses are easy to fall down on. Just because you made it through don't mean the truck behind/in front you will.
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2012
  11. Um, physics says you are wrong. Your tires have more friction than the metal/plastic/leather/textile of your bike gear. So you will get yourself slower faster (and therefore hitting the object at a slower speed) by staying upright and hitting the brakes before you hit object then if you lowside.

    It is a myth that you are better off intentionally lowsiding (well I suppose you could argue maybe you would slide under the object if it is tall enough but then if the object is still moving that could get you run over instead).

    Posted using Outdoor Hub Campfire
  12. KevinD

    KevinD Modulator Staff Member


    James is a great guy, and he wants you to stay alive & healthy.
    If you never ride on ice, you'll stay safe. 4 wheels & ice often don't play well together: two wheels & ice is a formula for disaster.
    Trust us guys on this side of the mountains where ice is (usually) a daily occurrence this time of year. Many of us have found out the hard way what it's like to ride on ice. :angry7:

    Last edited: Nov 24, 2012
  13. Bald Guy

    Bald Guy Cone Head

  14. Texasl

    Texasl Totally Charming Retired Moderator Staff Member

    As a person who chased a bike around a corner w/in a mile of my house on "clear" roads, I can definitely vote with James o this one. Commuting in the Lacey area before dark can be really sketchy with all of the moisture that wicks up from the Nisqually and Puget Sound. If you can come up with a cheap beater car for the icy commutes it mite make so me sense.

    As for rain? Gear up and go for it.
  15. That's not what he meant. Go for the turn and you have a chance to make it. Stand the bike up and you're guaranteed to crash.
  16. Wow, I hope I don't ride with anyone that thinks it's better to just stand the bike up and run into the object (at a slower speed) than it is to TRY to lean more and avoid the object altogether, haha.
  17. Last year, I decided I wouldn't ride to work if the temperature got below 32 degrees during the night. That worked out ok for me and we have really bad roads in Frederickson. In theory you might be ok at lower temperatures because the earth probably warms the roads enough to prevent ice a few degrees below that. I decided that I have years of riding ahead and crashing isn't worth testing out my theory.
  18. Not an issue in Nov. but watch the first cool mornings in Oct. A lot of people leave their sprinklers on at night, and the water goes across the road and freezes. You can be going around an ice free corner and all of a sudden there is ice on the road. You go down so fast you don't know what hit you.:tard:
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2012
  19. Thanks much guys...advice taken to heart.

    Are the DOT road temp maps worth anything?
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