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Timbersled's Mountain Horse kit converts motorbikes into snow machines

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February 13, 2014

A Kawasaki KXF450 with the Mountain Horse Short Track kit

A Kawasaki KXF450 with the Mountain Horse Short Track kit

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Do you hate not being able to use your dirt bike, all winter long? Well, it turns out that there's a way of pressing it into service, even once the snow has fallen – aside from swapping in studded tires, that is. Timbersled's Mountain Horse kit replaces a motorbike's front wheel with a ski, and its rear wheel with a snowmobile-like track.

Quite similar in concept to the Snoxcycle, the Mountain Horse can reportedly be mounted on a wide variety of dirt bike makes and models, as long as the buyer makes sure to get a properly-spec'd kit. With the exception of the KTM 690, no modifications to the bike are required, and all the components can be simply bolted into place.

There are three versions of the kit, depending on the intended use.

The standard 120-inch (305-cm)-long Short Track provides the best maneuverability along with the optimum power-to-traction ratio, allowing it to be used on bikes with engines as small as 250cc. The 137-inch (348-cm) Long Track, on the other hand, offers a claimed 20 percent better traction in deep snow. That added traction comes at the expense of about 8 mph (13 km/h) off the top speed, however, and it should only be used on bikes sporting 500cc or higher.

The Long Track kit
The Long Track kit

Finally, for racier types, there's the 121-inch (307-cm) Snow Cross kit. It's narrower than the other two, and its track is made from a harder rubber. The addition of a swing arm boosts the travel of its rear suspension, plus the paddles on the track are longer in the middle and shorter on the sides – this gives the track a rounded cross-section, similar to that of a tire. Along with snow cross racing, this version is also intended for use on hard-pack snow and rough terrain.

Prices range from US$5,500 for the Short Track through to $6,200 for the Long Track, and top out at $6,500 for the Snow Cross. Bikes using the kits can be seen in action, in the video below.

Should it be your mountain bike that you want to use in the snow, you might instead be interested in the K-Trak. And if you're more interested in making your four-wheeled vehicle more snow-worthy, you could check out Mattracks or Track N Go.

Source: Timbersled

About the Author
Ben Coxworth An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away.   All articles by Ben Coxworth
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8 Comments

Considering Global Warming is going to make less and less snow, and when there is snow it will be unpredictable, so the market for this thing is just going to shrink.

Nelson Hyde Chick
14th February, 2014 @ 11:14 am PST

It may be fun. Can't quite tell from the video. At first it looks like the single ski front end likes to dive into the snow and stick. Header into big drift. Not fun. Maybe two front blades would be better? Like a snowmobile? Don't know.

The other, bigger, problem is that these machines are noisy. When out hiking or cross country skiing or just trying to enjoy the peaceful natural world there's few greater annoyances than having some noisy, stinky machine come charging by to spoil the mood. But that may just be me.

duh3000
14th February, 2014 @ 01:44 pm PST

solitude and beauty. Just because something can be made doesn't mean it should get made, and this video demonstrates the mindset of Timbersled's disregard for the sanctity of solitude and reverence for nature. Time to start enacting and enforcing laws to limit where these motorized snowcycles can travel with a hefty tax and registration. Pooling money into a fund paid for by all who travel the outdoor (human and motor powered alike) will help keep the sanctuary of nature pristine for those who prefer solitude to speed.

ADVENTUREMUFFIN
14th February, 2014 @ 03:29 pm PST

Excellent way to extend the moto hobby into winter. Another way to prevent winter doldrums just because of a bit of frozen precip!

REScott
14th February, 2014 @ 05:23 pm PST

With the ski under powder so much, I can only imagine how many times they caught snags and went over the handlebars. Also, they don't have enough travel - you give up nearly half the height of the front wheel and plenty at the back. I expect your feet would be under powder quite a bit and it'd be a challenge staying on the pegs.

Plus, dirt bikes year round in pristine environments? No, don't need it, thanks...

Marcus Carr
14th February, 2014 @ 10:04 pm PST

Now THIS is something I could get into! I was a snowmobiler for years but just couldn't afford to stay in the game? But a good dirt bike and this set up plus I'm sure much easier to haul around then a regular snowmobile. Wish I had one now since the earth is going into a deep freeze I could use this all the time! :-D

mrhuckfin
16th February, 2014 @ 07:10 pm PST

If you had two skis in the front it would alter the handling quite a bit. They appear to lighter in weight and much easier to maneuver than a snowmobile. The riders in the video were using the machines like motorcycles.

King Penson
17th February, 2014 @ 06:37 pm PST

Idea is good but the price is stupid one can buy a whole tested snow machine with this price tag .Snow machines need a lots of power .Your dirt bike usually will last for a long time but if you put this kit on your bike the engine life is half even if you are happy with a lousy performance. Bike engines are designed for normal weather but a snow machine is for winter .So save your money for now.

Khan Kia
18th February, 2014 @ 11:35 pm PST
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