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hill climbing

mah

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#1
hey- i would like some tips on hillclimbing. what do you do? what do you do different in rocks, dirt and sand? thanks
 
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#2
I have found that being aggressive is your best start. I used to be nervous of hill climbs. Until I had a race that was filled with a lot of them. I got the attitude that Heck with This and I started attacking the accents and hit them perfect. Now I look for more and more challanging one to try... Remember to have the momentum, gearing and up off the seat are some of the best tips I can give.

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Scott #431
Some Fear Racing "Cause if you don't have any you ain't going fast enough"
'93 KX250
'92 ZX-7R and '97 ZX-7RR
"Doesn't hurt till the bone is exposed"
"When cut do you bleed green? I do!"
 
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#3
You really do need to attack most hill climbs. It's really important to get your momentum built up before you start climbing. Losing momentum half way up a monster hill is about the worst thing that can happen. You definitely need to stay off the seat, although certain really technical climbs may require you to move around the bike more. If there are lots of bad ruts and rocks you need to use a little bit more finesse with the throttle and your position on the bike. If it's just a wide open sandy hill climb, just stay on the throttle until you hit the top!
 
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#4
Your profile is not complete so not knowing what you ride or skill level is etc...All I can offer is some generic tips.
Keep the front end weighted down as much as possible, sometimes your head needs to be forward of the handlebars with elbows out, naturaly this will raise your butt off the seat. Failure to keep front end down will result in looping out. A really skilled rider can pull some wicked wheelies uphill and steer by shifting weight around.
When in loose soil where you need weight in the back for traction to burn through you can sit, but be ready for traction when you do hook up like on a rock or hard pack. With a finger or two on the clutch you need to control power to the ground while staying on the pipe.
On a big bore bike you can go from a dead stop at the bottom in third gear with lots of clutch use.
Smaller bikes you can sometimes start in second but it would be best to stay in a gear that will pull all the way to the top without having to shift which eats up momentem.
When powering out turn sideways to keep from crashing.
Hope this helps, just stay above the bike, don't let it come tumbling down on you in a crash.
 

fremontguy

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#5
Since were on the subject of hillclimbing,
whats the best technique to get back down those monster hillclimbs? Clutch and brake,
or low gear and brake?(4 stroke)
 
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#6
Hillclimbing where it´s much stone and rocky:

Do not ride aggresively, use 2nd gear or 3rd so you always have a gear to shift down to if you need. Don´t blip the throttle, low rpm´s not in the powerband. Your weight should not be on the front wheel, so you can climp over stones and rocks easily.

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Johan, Sweden
Husqvarna WR125 -96
 

mah

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#7
thanks alot guys. how do you do those quick turn arounds right before you cant climb anymore?
 

KWJams

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#8
Quick turn arounds -- are usually done by accident ;)
Going down a real ugly hill I use everything
I can. Always in gear of course, with motor running compression will only do so much use rear brake until it wants to lock and kill motor, don't be nervous about using front brake.
Dead engine thumb on kill button in gear when wheel starts to go sideways a little clutch action will straighten her out. and a handfull of front brake to scrub off some speed when needed all while standing on pegs leaned way back over rear fender. Let bike float under neath you while squeezzing w/knees.
 

Rooster

Today's Tom Sawyer
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#9
Going back down monster hill climbs is about 95% psychological because it feels like you are going to endo. Be gentle with the front brake, as you don't want to start a slide. On most climbs there is loose stuff so chances of an endo are slim (at least where I ride). Let the bike kinda float under you while you are slightly up off the seat and all the way back. The motor and rear brake should be sufficient to keep your speed down.

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I love the smell of two stroke in the morning.....
 

fremontguy

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#10
Yah,I know what you mean by 95% psychological. I look down a steep
trail with ruts and say a prayer.
I see 2 strokes decending in neutral with brakes, I switch between 1st gear and brakes,
and clutch with brakes, when rear starts locking.
 
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#11
On a downhill, I always try to go in gear. I figure it helps keep the back wheel turning when I get on the brakes. You will have better control even if it's slipping as long as the wheel is turning.
 

Strick

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#12
Here's a discussion I had with an older expert rider, who's sons are sponsored pros. What makes a hill any different from a flat road/single track? Gravity. His philosophy is you can go just as fast up or down hills, as you can on the flats, after taking into consideration gravity. I wish I could live up to this simple piece of advise.

Non rocky uphills - WFO. Sandy uphills WFO, and then some. Rocky uphills - pick your path carefully ahead of time if possible and keep momentum. General rule on uphills - speed is you friend.

Downhills: When locking up the rear wheel have the clutch in, and then slowly pump the rear to eliminate the skidding, and light to medium on the front brake. It is very important to pick a good line in rocks, and knowing the run out at the bottom is also beneficial.

Overall try to be very aware of the situation uphills and down. A good line is your best offense/defense.

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Strick '99 KTM 300mxc
AMA member
Blue Ribbon Coalition member
 
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#13
Riding a 4 stroke helps! I can climb stuff on my big XRL that I would never have attempted on my CR250 years ago. I am fairly new back into riding, but I seem to be riding a lot smarter than I was before. I am amazed at how much pressure I can put on that front wheel without it breaking loose on steep downhills. Someone above mentioned confidence.....this is a huge factor in my riding. If I think too long about doing a climb or knarly section of trail I usually screw it up. When I relax and "ride" the bike (stay on top of it) instead of just holding on for dear life the results are much more favorable. I am sure I am climbing nothing like what some of you guys do (I have seen some tracks going up stuff I would only dream about) but if you ride within your ability and push it from time to time to get better, you will.

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Scott in KC
XR650L ('97)

"...because I don't get this feeling playing golf!"
 
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#14
For going down hills I use first or second and just rev the bike, never go near my brakes and ride down the hill. :) Small displacement thumpers have advantages. For going uphill. Sand: WFO in fairly high gear Dirt with decent traction and just clear hill: WFO is fun for those hills Rocky/Technical: First or second gear, pick you line carefully, not too much weight on front of bike, if a twostroke, clutch slipping will probably be needed, be careful!!!

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1985 XR100R
1978 XL250S

Hondas Rule!!!
 
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#15
When going downhill in loose stuff remember"The throttle will save you more often the the gas!"