Trail Riding



I was just reading a post from a new member (kahnkrunch), and it occured to me that there isn't too much out here on the subject of trail riding.
I can't believe that I'm the only one out here who's heart starts going vrooom, vroooom when I see a trail that looks even marginally passable.
I'd like to hear about what kinds of trails you ride and what kind of equipment you feel works for you. Also, trail riding (at least the way I do it) is bound to seriously stress the equipment so how about some details of mods you've had to make to your bike, drive train, etc. to cope with it?


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I know that a mountain bike without any engine cane take plenty abuse at the hands of a rough trail, but how does it hold up once you put an engine on it?
I don't like doing trails unless it's a downhill where I can shut her down. It seems with engine power some handling suffers when your going over obstacles and stuff. Then it's hard on the spokes out back. The back spokes are already dealing with the sprocket stresses then to add ruts and holes? I try to stay clear whenever I can.
Mine is a rack mount on a mountain bike with front suspension. I don't have to deal with sprocket stresses, but I check the spokes regularly. I have a couple that need tightening. I dont really do radical trails. Mostly old roads through the woods. they are very poorly maintained, if at all. Many of them get most of their use by snow machines in the winter, when washouts, etc. are not noticable.
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i enjoyed a few years of semi-serious offroad bicycling, '92 diamondback "outlook" fully dressed for road-running...but on the weekends i took her to the missouri state parks & rode the trails.

so long as i could trust myself to motorize but not exceed the limitations of the bicycle, i'd love to go back there with a happy-time on that old would be a total hoot :cool:
I would say that perhaps a full-suspension bike, with a 50+tooth rear sprocket would be just the trick. that would take a lot of stress off the spokes, and the higher-gearing would aid greatly with power.

we went camping up Mt.Lemmon awhile back, and i took 'Creep', but no suspension and a 36t sprocket...not as much fun as i'd hoped.
I do a bit of offroading. I use the pedals a lot and have the motor idle till I need it. I tend to be a bit rough on the clutch so I don't do it as much as I'd like to. The standard muffler mount is also not in the greatest place for semi serious mt biking. I've already cracked one off on a rock and I've smacked it plenty. I'm considering putting on one of those side mounted pocket bike mufflers. The bike itself (I have an old Giant Iguana) has no problem lugging the motor around when its not engaged but you can't ride like you could if it wasn't there. It's not as manuverable and it's obviously no where near as light hehe.
I think off roading would be OK on a well built mountain bike but depending on how rough the terrain was you may have to gear down significantly to keep from lugging the engine...I was riding on a very bumpy trail one day and had to go at it manually (pedal) since I was going too slow for the engine to pull comfortably (40T)....Also, if it is very dusty may want to think about better air filtration.