Riding through a puddle

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    • #237216

      Hey guys! Ive started XC riding in Belgium a month ago and clocked 300 km’s already. We havent done many technical stuff but Ive been struggling with the same thing.
      A pool of water about half a wheels heigth and about 1,5m long. Theres a ramp in and out of dirt but I cant really seem to have a surefire way to get through. Can you help?

      i tried medium speed leaning back, and sometimes i manage to pull through but the force of the bike getting to a halt in the water just off balances me completely.

      Am I missing something obvious?

    • #237231

      Half a wheel height sounds really deep. Once you start getting that deep, you risk getting water and dirt into your hubs which is not good. Can you walk around it?

    • #237242

      That’s pretty deep and more than just a puddle- so Kudos to you for taking it on- although as Jeff Barber points out- watch out for water in rims.  My advice is three-fold- Your Line, your gear, and your speed.

      First- examine the bed underwater prior to taking it on next time.  Look for a line, put the image of where that line is to the top of the water in your mind, and ride that line.  Riding through water is no different than riding dry- you still have to pick a good line, it’s just more difficult to because it is more difficult to see the bottom due to the water.  But look for the smoothest line under the water you can find and try to ride that line.

      Second is your gear.  What gear are you in when going into the water?  I always go for a lower gear BEFORE I hit the water than I feel like I should use for two reasons- first the water always slows me down more than expected due to the friction of the water and usually hitting something unforeseen under the water and second, getting out up a slope with wet wheels is always harder than it looks.

      Third- Speed.  Speed is your friend.  You have to attack water.  You can’t be passive.  With that said, one of the risks of riding through water is your front wheel getting stuck in something unseen and you going a** over handlebars.  So this has to be done with caution.  Hence, my first piece of advice, scope out your line ahead of time.

      Once you know you have a good line, gear down low BEFORE hitting the water and attack that line through the water with speed and ferocity.  Water is really no different than any other obstacle like a drop or jump or whatever- it’s scary and your natural inclination is to slow down, but this is exactly what you need to avoid.  Don’t be out of control, but be confident in your line choice through it and let yourself go.  And if you start to slow down pedal like h*ll!!  Have fun.

      BTW- going fast also has the Moses parting the seas effect of helping keep water out of your hubs.

    • #237344

      Hehe, yes I have read that riding through water can be damaging. So i’m not sure wether I should keep attacking this one.

      I like the advice, ill try to get a pic next time i’m passing it/through. The kid inside me just wants to get stuck in the middle but the idea of falling head to toe in water just keeps lingering. ???????????

      That being said last time we tried it a couple of times and choosing different lines and that seems to be the preferable choice.

      Also something Im wondering is, say you get Around 15 or 20 KPH, what is the amount you can clear when doing a proper bunny hop? 1m? Or …

    • #237409

      You’re not going fast enough. You must achieve planing speed before hitting the puddle or your wheels will just sink to the bottom.



    • #237448


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