Ski-eBike - An ebike for Skiing!


Local time
3:31 PM
Jul 13, 2020
This would have worked great for getting up to the skin tracks in the Butte and cause way less vehicle congestion at the trailhead. PU's and sled trailers take up a lot of room.

ebike setup for skiing.jpg

Not sure it would compete with the town bus system though.
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Here's how I do it, 1200' vertical, 2.5 miles, to the local ski area. I just do it once or twice a season, in the spring when the road is dry and on an off day, as the road up is crazy enough to drive much less ride.
ebike with trailer for skiing.jpg
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It really is easier to just hike up the hill or skin. I’ve ised bikes for the approach, but you can’t use a bike one way cuz you gotta go get it at the end of the day.

That Scott ebike is super silly with the stove and mocha pot, and those ginormous pogies, oh my!
There are plenty of flat approaches up drainages that have enough packed down snow to ride a bike on, where this would work great... if it was a fat bike. WTF were they thinking putting those little tires on it? Someone geeked out about putting mounts for a stove on the darn thing and didn't think about the fact that you'll have to at least sometimes ride it on snow?!?

We’ve had a few mountain lion hunters around here adopt a fat eBike as a go to conveyance for tracking and hauling mountain lions. Legal access on USFS roads closed to rigs over 40” wide, quiet, and enough ooomph to triple their walk-in hunting range.

Non electric fat bikes have been used too.

No doubt some ski access can be optimized by bike.

That pic is just a piss-take, and gives me a chuckle.
"There are plenty of flat approaches up drainages that have enough packed down snow to ride a bike on, where this would work great... if it was a fat bike."

My first experiment with electric assist took place in CB in 2001 with a Currie Drive and SLA battery throttle control system mounted on an XACD aluminum frame 29"er with Nanoraptors. I got it together in the early spring so there was still a lot of pack and rode out of 420 Belleview down 135 and turned up towards Brush Creek. At Veltries Ranch the road turned into snowmobile track and I thought what the heck and hit it. To my surprise the bike kept going and in fact went quite well to the point where I remember laughing out loud.

Since then I have ridden on packed snow trails with 2.1's or a little better at low psi many times. I feel if it is packed, and certainly if it is just a plowed access road, there is no need for fat tires. However for unconsolidated snow conditions fat tires work much better up to the point that they don't. Mike Curiak is pushing that envelope every year and is able to ride in powder with 5" tires and super wide rims at like .5psi.

However the Scott bike above has skis aboard so it is not meant to ride on unconsolidated snow, that's why you have the skis. But I do think it has studded tires, or at least should. Big problem would be keeping it secure at the trailhead while you are doing laps.

As an aside I ride my drop bar front hub bike with 45c's @35psi here on and off the beach just about every day as well as the sandy single tracks in amongst the dune grass. The front wheel drive feature is most of the reason it works but it has to be in sync with active pedaling to work at 100%.
I've seen guys on passes in the summer in Europe riding mtbs in AT boots set up more or less like that, so it would work, likely better there since distances are shorter and more roads.

Makes for good PR
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White is credited with the term Snow Mobile after adapting tracks and front end skis onto a car. Bombardier invented the roller track that launched what more commonly became known as Snow Mobile/Machines and led to nonsense such as this being ridden by Yvon DuHamel. I think it was called Deaf Wish....

vintage skidoo photo.jpg

They continue to be widely popular today.

Now there are Snow Bikes such as KTM's etc. with a single track and front ski originally made by a company called Timber Sled. I think that is what the guy from Tahoe is trying to sort of imitate on a smaller scale.
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Somewhat packed snow or supportable crust gets me about 3000' and around 20 miles of safe range above 15F on my fatsix with 4.8' tires.
(Lower power setting, still need to work for it.) Bit easier then riding up same pass naked on pavement, without the cargo in the summer on a pedal road bike.
Big advantage is keeping body temperature cooler, you can ride in touring gear without swamping out. Usually faster and more energy is left in analog tank for skinning/skiing/split boarding.

Class 1 with torque sensor is probably king, power is often not your friend. Need good control over power modulation.

(Yamaha Haibike fatsix can take 4.8", don't think the Bosh fatsix can)
An eBike might have saved me a dozen miles trudging up dirt roads blocked by intermittent melting snow but I never minded skiing up a packed snow road but I didn’t turn down a snowmobiler’s friendly offer of a ride which got me an extra hour of backcountry skiing. But most places I skiied I wouldn’t have needed or wanted an eBike for access; it’s just one more complication. Helicopters are nice though; we got a ride to and from a lodge system in Canada operated by Golden Alpine Holidays; no longer in business.