Several folks consider snow riding to be demanding, slow, and sluggish, making some abandon their ebikes until winter is over. However, some electric bikes have specific features to thrive on snow that aren’t compulsory for cycling on other terrains.
Staying on top of compacted snow depends on the fatness of your ebike tire. If you like biking in the snow, this article can guide you on everything you need to know about snow riding with your fat bike.
What is a fat tire ebike?
Fat tire ebikes have wider tires and rims than regular electric bicycles. The goal of inventing ebikes with these tire sizes is for a smoother ride on deep snow and reduced bumps and vibration. They come with specific features to cope on diverse terrains, making them the best choice for off-road and snow-riding expeditions.
The fat tires' spread on a larger surface area distributes the weight of the rider and the bike. This reduces ground pressure, ensuring you have a soft float over snowy surfaces without getting caught up or sinking. Compared to other sizes, fat tires conveniently run at a low air pressure of 5-14 psi.
There are several fat electric bikes on the market with distinguishable tire sizes, and Himiway Cobra Pro has 26” x 4.8” fat tires–the largest tire size in the ebike industry. The wheel, fork, and frame design are to accommodate wide tires specifically.
Fat tire definition
The better choice of electric bikes for snowy conditions have fat tires with 4.0 and 4.8 inches, especially when it’s difficult to get the layering right. All Himiway ebikes come with fat tires. Some have 4.0” while the Himiway Cobra and Himiway Cobra Pro run on 4.8” fat tires. These fat bikes provide extra grip and traction, with low pressure to allow you to pedal over the strangest terrains where conventional tires sink.
America’s Fattest Tire – Himiway Cobra Pro
When purchasing an electric bike, the main criteria are time, efficiency, and speed. Only with the fat tire ebike can one achieve these while snow riding. Even though some people often avoid the fat tire ebikes due to their high prices, their advantage over basic bikes is quite convincing.
It’s almost impossible to find an electric bike with more oversized tires than the Himiway Cobra Pro Softail Electric Mountain Bike. The Cobra Pro is more suitable for various terrains, including snow, mountains, rocks, beaches, or through forests, and it does not leave out city streets.
Benefits of Choosing Fat Bikes for Snow Riding
The size of your ebike tires keeps you on the ground in the snow. Therefore, it plays a crucial role in determining the convenience of your ride. The tires on fat bikes have a larger contact patch and extra with to give more grip and better traction.
Strong grip: more secure and stable
Fat bikes give you the edge while riding in deep snow because the tires distribute all weights across a wider surface area, including yours, your bike, and your gear. This balance, called flotation, helps the tires roll over deep snow without sinking or getting caught up like skinny bikes. Fat tires create better traction on slippery snow, with the extra-wide tires forming a larger contact patch with the ground.
The wide volume of fat tires gives a larger contact patch with the ground for improved traction. This feature keeps the ebike stable and away from sliding out on a slick patch, especially when turning a corner, accelerating, or braking. It creates more friction between the snow surface and the tire. Since you can ride on lower pressure of 5-8 psi, the tire has a softer contact to tread, which also improves the traction.
Comfortable and Durable: Conquer All Terrain
Snow has a way of roughing up a ride. However, the fat tires' high volume helps it run at a low air pressure, even on snow. The tire gives it a soft cushion to absorb shocks and vibrations such that when you hit an obstacle on the road or trail, the tire deforms around the object and bounces off, absorbing the impact.
The fat bike improves the ride quality and reduces the harshness of riding in the snow. It helps to avoid fatigue and increase comfort on challenging terrains like snow, ice, wet rocks, and sand. Also, you can get studded tires and make more impressions. Even with little experience, you can ride the fat tire ebike where other bikes cannot go.
How To Identify Fat Bikes For Snow Riding
You will need to consider a few important features when looking for fat bikes for snow riding. Instead of giving into the intimidation of the differences between regular bikes and fat bikes for snow riding, there are tips to make your choice quick and easy.
Go for oversized tires:
Even days after a snowfall, finding a perfect easy-to-ride trail is tough–then it’s all down to your tires. When choosing a fat bike, the tire size and tread are the first things to consider. With high-quality tires sized 4” or 4.8” in length, you can get maximum traction when riding over fresh snow. Studded tires offer an advantage in icy conditions with an ultimate grip, especially if you intend to ride a lot this winter.
Choose durable frames:
Most fat tire bikes for snow riding have aluminum frames to keep the ebike lightweight and strong to handle terrains. Some manufacturers build fat bikes with steel intended for maximum longevity, but this puts the bike at the expense of taking lesser weight. As highly performing fat ebikes, the design must be durable and versatile to support loaded racks or bags. The wheels are a contributing factor to the weight and frame size. Fat bike frames have 26” wheel sizes for the fat tires, which hold more value.
Check the suspension:
If you think you may someday be riding your ebike on snow, finding the right suspension that can thrive on any terrain is better. The right one will keep the bike steady and responsive to control while handling steep and challenging trails. Some fat bikes have rare suspension or suspension forks, but you need to be careful since these can add to the upfront and maintenance costs when you ride in gritty and slushy winter conditions. However, since the large tires give sufficient cushion on most surfaces, some fat bikes are comfortable using rigid forks.
Tips for riding e-bikes in snow
During winter, the riding conditions changes. Riding on snow involves dealing with smooth terrains that can be quite unusual. Even if you don’t necessarily need a higher riding skill, you must take certain precautions to ensure your ride is safe.
Adjust the proper tire pressure
The performance of your tires depends on the pounds per square inch and terrain. You may leave your tires as high as 14 psi for sharp, rocky conditions to avoid bouncy rides. However, it helps to take some air out of your tires to improve grip while riding in the snow. Adjusting the tire pressure in winter conditions–between 5 to 10 psi helps the traction and stability while contributing to the floating.
Safety Tips while riding in snow
In snow conditions, it’s better to use your bike’s electric abilities. Avoid pedaling and let the bike roll over the snow slowly. Being gentle helps reduce the force on the contact patch and the chances of skidding. Even if you have to pedal, lower the power level and gear. Also, avoid sudden movements like quick starts or stops to keep your fat tires in good shape. It’s important to note that cold conditions can deteriorate the battery life, so ensure you have enough juice for your ride.
Keep warm while riding in winter.
Depending on where you ride, you need to layer up and keep warm. The rule is to dress like you are going skiing. Staying too long in the cold while layered up can cause overheating, sweating, or even hyperthermia, and being underdressed can make you miserable. Therefore, it's better to have a bag or pack to store your layers. Your helmet and goggles can also do much good in keeping your face and head. Remember to get insulators for your hands to avoid frigid digits.
Enjoy your snow riding.
From deep sand to snow and mud, fat tire bikes are better for taking you to places with ease and threading on terrains where other bikes will fail. As much as they can handle the bumps on uneven surfaces, they also have extra-wide tires to distribute the weight, create balance, and float over more areas without sinking in. If you intend to enjoy snow riding, consider getting the legendary Himiway Cobra Pro.