Saturday, 31 December 2016

Extending the Canadian Motorcycle Riding Season: Snow Bikes!

The idea of a snowmobile conversion for a motorcycle keeps popping up everywhere this winter.  Timbersled makes just such a thing.  It's seven grand Canadian for the system plus another fifteen hundred for the fitting kit.  The Husqvarna FE501S is a road legal dual sport bike that the kit fits.  They can be found for about twelve grand.  It's a rich man's game but that doesn't stop me from dreaming about it.  For about twenty grand Canadian ($14,900 US) I'd have a year 'round off road specialist that would also get down the road when needed.  The thought of pulling up to a RIDE spotcheck in a blizzard on a plated version of one of these makes me quite happy.  Officer: 'Uh, what's that?'

The KLX250 I tried a while back was so slow with me on it that I felt unsafe on roads.  I couldn't coax it to 100km/hr which meant I had a row of traffic behind me even on country back roads.  The Husky weighs less and has almost three times more horsepower.  Keeping up with traffic on back roads would not be a problem.  Those capabilities mean it'd carry me and some camping gear deep into the countryside in the summer while also being snow-bike convertible in the winter, all for twenty five hundred bucks less than a BMW GS.

A new snowmobile costs sixteen grand or more and only works for a few months of year if you're lucky.  From that point of view a road ready enduro bike with a Timbersled system looks like a more useful and cost effective approach to riding in the snow (and everything else). 

Timbersled Snow Conversion System

The Husqvarna FE 501S Dual Sport Motorcycle

In the snow!

In the desert!

On forest trails!  All on the same bike.