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Hunting from a bike
Who does it? I’m setting up my new fat tire bike. How do you carry your bow? I feel like bow strapped to pack is the way to go but I’m not sure. The bow racks mounting to the back rack might be ok?? I think I’ll add a trailer too.
This is my setup I shoot a recurve but the way I use the bike its no problem. Tight single track would be a problem.
Just like Greg E has in his picture. Recurve, no problem.
Use my mountain bike all the time to get way up gated logging roads closed to motorized vehicles. I have those U-shaped ATV gun holders on my handlebars for my LB. I plan to try one of those fat tire bikes when I take my bike in for a new shifter.
They work great in wilderness areas.... at night. Wink ;-)
Dumb question - where do you hide your bike and how do you find it in the dark?
I strap my bow to my backpack. The idea of it rattling around on my handlebars gives me nightmares
Some years back there were three toms that would come running every time they heard my HD. They would come from over 100 yds to within 20 feet of me. Every time I’d rev the engine they would gobble. Never could bring myself to hunt those three Harley enthusiasts.
I know, different kind of bike.
We did 20 miles on our morning hunts this year. Haven't locked my bike in that unit in the two years I've hunted it. It's bike or walk in only, so everybody is in the same boat and they leave stuff alone.
There is one place where I usually use a bike, it's 8 miles in on a gated road. All up hill on the way in, and downhill all the way out. The fat tires work better, as you're less likely to get a flat. Nothing as bad as being miles in at dark, and getting a flat tire. As far as the bow goes, I keep it on my backpack, as attaching it to the bike on the way downhill would cause it to rattle too much. Also, riding the bike makes less noise than walking.
I do, and can tell you from experience to wear a helmet. If I wasn't wearing one when I crashed coming out in the dark I would probably be dead now. Or a vegetable.
My next hunting bike will be a 27.5 + (3" tires). I believe that's a great compromise for how I use it.
I've got a Fugi with the 27.5" and 3" tires. Gets around very very well. I use the Y shaped things on the handle bars. I just leave mine laying down in brush where I can see it from my stand.
Good point jaq, I’ve never wore a helmet on a bike but have been considering it. Things happening fast especially in the dark. Did all your equipment survive that wreck ?
I hide my bike in the bushes and build a couple of small cairns off the side of the logging road. I stick it out far enough that headlights won't pick up the reflectors but a headlamp shining out there will. Some of my cairns in Newfy have been undisturbed for years. The same here.
Jag, is right about a helmet, going on a field turning row, hit a rut, slam me down, head it first, very hard, thanks for the helmet.:>)
Coasting down a road closure in Idaho. just enough light to make out the road when I realized elk were running alongside us close enough to touch with a longbow. Over in 4-5 seconds, but exciting.
I have put the bow on the bike and didn't like it. Lou makes a good point about wearing a helmet, I walked away from a crash because the helmet crushed, not my head.
Funny thing was that I almost didn't take the helmet that day. Decided at the last second. I was riding out in the dark, nobody knew where I was, hit a big loose rock and the bike went one way and I went the other. Was lnocked out briefly and had two cracked ribs. Without the helmet I'm pretty sure I'd have died on the mountain that night.
My bow was on the handlebars and was fine. The bike ran into a big spruce tree. But I'm not a fan of that carrying method and am looking into the various scabbards that attach to the rear fork and rack.
What type of seat are you bikers using for rough trails?
I’ve got a non-suspension, regular mountain bike and most of the time it just kills my butt. Put on a pack and it’s worse!
Yea, I had a hard tail first. They suck. I bought a full suspension Release 1. Like ridin on a cloud.
I put a soft seat on mine and it changed everything
We did it antelope hunting this year. My Salsa Mukluk fat tire worked pretty slick. It definitely wasn't a piece of cake, but it was better than walking for sure. It was a rifle hunt and I strapped the rifle to my pack. I would do the same for my bow. I got a rack for the back with saddle bags and between that, and my pack, I had plenty of room for a few days, including carrying my own water. The front end does get pretty light. At the end of the hunt I was able to get 1-1/2 antelope and camp back to the truck but I did have to walk up all but the most gradual slopes. The downhills were a hoot!
The other plus side is that I've found that riding the local singletrack is by far the most enjoyable way to get in shape for me. It's an 11 mile loop and I'm spent at the end of it. An hour doing that goes by quicker than 5 minutes jogging or 10 minutes at the gym for me, and is easier on my knees.
Does anyone have any experience with this style of rack? I may build one along this line. I was also looking at trailers.
"I’ve got a non-suspension, regular mountain bike and most of the time it just kills my butt. Put on a pack and it’s worse!"
To be honest, I never spent a lot of time in the saddle while on singletrack unless it was a fairly smooth trail... which Elk paths often seem to be. They're not as dumb as we can be!
Helmets. Oh, yeah. I had a favorite ride up the hill - took an hour & ten minutes: 60 up, 10 down. One day it occurred to me that JUST MAYBE it would be a bad idea to Endo off into the aspens where nobody would be able to find my sorry carcass!
Another thing... they're sneaky. I never rode with the Elk, but I did once almost T-bone a big cow. Locked 'em up front & rear and we stood there looking at each other from MAYBE 15 yards....
Agree with the helmet though I haven't always worn one. I've kissed the road more than once. Good lighting is needed also- a head lamp isn't enough Not sure if fat tires do better on ice but coming down around a corner where the sun melt has re frozen is not fun :(
What about hunting in November in western Montana? Many gated roads, sometimes 4-5 miles of bottom road before you get to the mountain. How difficult would it be to bike on a snow on road in the cold of November? I've seen it done, by an Amish kid who was allergic to horses. His bike was as basic as it gets, but there wasn't much snow that year. What kind of set up would be best in the snow?
I run studded tires if I use my bike in the winter. They work pretty well but you still have to be careful. The hardcore bikers up here make their own out of screws. I went for a ride with a couple of guys I taught in school. They are crazy screaming down almost vertical skidder trails. They were both distance runners for me and literally run deer down when they track. Nice to be young and bullet proof.
Trax, you can use studded tires but the fat tires really shine in the snow. They have lots of flotation and most have aggressive knobs so they dig well. Hard, slick topped snow is hard regardless, but softer snow is great.
Bigdog, that looks like an awesome setup! Sure wish we could use e-bikes here in CO. But everywhere an e-bike is allowed I can drive my truck or ATV so not much point in it.
Bigdog, what kind of trailers are those in your pics?
go to amazon then bicycle carts. there is a bunch of different ones I would get the two wheel one it will handle the weight of game animals better. axle bolt up is best but seat post is quicker to hook up
bigdog, Big boys, bigger toys. Nice rig. Paul
Always thought those bikes would be great to hunt from. Problem is, I would look like Pee Wee Herman on one.
We can't ride a bike on the fed land up here. Trucks are allowed. Now they are starting to posting their land which they said they would never do. If the big timber holdings are sold to them, Northern NH, Vermont, NY, and Maine are done. I have gone to their meetings and they want it all for a national park.
You can put a suspension seat post on a hard tail bike. Makes a big difference. Not quite like full suspension, but a lot better than without. Mine cost around $125. Not cheap, but way less than a new bike.
I read somewhere the federal definition of a motorized vehicle is something over 1000 or 1500 watts. If your electric bike is under that, it is not considered motorized and legal to use behind gated roads and two tracks. Many states use the federal definition when making their own rules for gated roads and two tracks. It maybe worthy to check up on that.
i thought the definition deciding whether a bike was allowed was done by whether they had wheels or not. God Bless
JL, the USFS specifically calls out e-bikes in their regulations. You can Google it. They are considered "motorized" no matter the wattage. People were getting in trouble and getting fines because of that old definition you referenced. And now on county and state land they post "No E-Bikes" signs on all the closed and bike trails. Until some group (AARP?) lobbies for pedal-assist to be considered non-motorized, they will be restricted to motorized trails only.
For trailers the 2 wheel version is best as the 1 wheel can get very unstable and cause you problems even on paved roads.
Jaq, You're correct. It looks like the Moab USFS or BLM office banned e-bikes at the request of mountain bikers and other groups in that area and the main offices followed suit. In a March 2016 letter, the USFS stated they are open to revisiting the regs and allowing e-bikes to be used. On state owned lands you have to know what each state has for rules. I posted a link showing what states have rules for e-bikes, which do not have rules and which states allow e-bikes. Some states already have rules that classify e-bikes as non-motorized or as bikes. IMO it shouldn't be a stretch to petition the USFS to allow e-bikes for hunters and other sports-folks in your local area. If I was going to push it, I'd also get my local Congressperson onboard.