Sunday, January 23, 2011

Training for the desert in subzero temperatures

Its at the end of January and there is still quite a lot of snow left here in Sweden in and around Stockholm. I need some time in the saddle so my plan is to get as much riding time as possible up until the rally in March so since it was a beautiful winter day today I took the opportunity to get some good riding on snow covered dirt roads.

Pogies keeps your hands out of the wind
Riding with spike tires on snow covered roads is actually quite fun and I can really recommend it if you never tried it before. The only real differences compared to riding in the summer is that you need to put on a lot more clothes and if it's really cold you might need to cover up the radiators with some duct tape or cardboard so the engine gets warm enough.

It was about -7°C today with a clear blue sky and nice, dry snow. I had to stop every now and then and warm up my fingers but apart from that it was great and I got a couple of hours of riding. This was my second ride with the new KTM 530 and I'm starting to get used to it now. It's heavier and got different motor characteristics compared to my KTM 400. I think I need to adjust the gear selector a little and I also need to experiment with some different size sprockets to find out what I will be using in Morocko. I spoke to my riding partner Carl and we are currently thinking of using 14/45, with the possibility of switching to a 13 front sprocket if we need to in the dunes. The plan is for us to have as identical bikes as possible so we can share each others spare parts.

Clear skies, beautiful sun and cold temperatures
The rally is getting closer but when there is snow everywhere and you are standing with your hands in your underwear trying to get the feeling back in your frozen fingers the dunes in Sahara feels very distant...

1 comment:

  1. Riding with spike tires on snow covered roads is actually quite fun , i think so too.