How To Ride Steep Rock Pinches | How To
Many of us have been out trailriding and come across a small, yet sharp pinch of a hill. One of those ones that sneaks up on you and catches you off-guard, which can then result in a failed attempt.
So here are a couple of quick tips to help you out.
1: Choose Your Line
As you can see, I have a pretty good view of the rock and quite a clear run at it. The right-hand side is quite steep, so I decide to go for the left. It’s very important to make sure that once you commit to a line, you ease the throttle on rather than just give it a fistful. You want momentum but it needs to be smooth. I am in second gear and I reckon throughout this sequence I am only at quarter throttle.
Build constant drive and make sure you’re fully committed to the hill. I’m standing almost central over the bike and just rolling the throttle on. Its important to maintain constant drive leading up to this, especially if the rock is slick. Being off-balance and abrupt with the throttle makes it quite difficult to maintain a straight drive before the rock.
3: Go Easy
I’ve hit the rock and the rear-end is starting to compress. I am still easy on the throttle and I am about to start transferring my body weight forward to ensure I don’t loop out. It is about now that the momentum you built up before the rock really becomes noticeable. This particular rock is quite dry and grippy so that is a positive.
4: Move Forward
I am up and onto the rock now. My balance is good, my drive is good and as I mentioned in the previous point, this rock is quite grippy. I have been easy and constant with the throttle at all times leading up to this stage which means the rear tyre actually will bite in and grip the rock. If you notice the front wheel starting to lift a little, start moving forward on the bike.
5: Almost There
I am almost there and the front wheel is well and truly off the ground. You can see all the knobs on the rear tyre which means it is not spinning fast, its biting into the rock. I have transferred my weight right over the front of the bike now and I am ready to drop the front wheel. It is important to not panic when the front does lift. Don’t completely shut the throttle and lose momentum. Be smooth with your throttle and clutch.
6: Easy On The Whiskey
Once you have reached the part where you are ready to ride away, still be mindful of your throttle and clutch. Don’t get too whiskey with it. Make sure you are well and truly past the worst of the pinch. Geoff Braico
That scary face
If you come flying around a corner and come across one of these, don’t hesitate or look for the chicken run around the rock. That will make you look like a swapper and your mates will make fun of you for years.
Need more of a challenge or want to show off? Try the trials technique known as the splat or splatter. Position a log or rock a metre from the base of the rock face you’re about to climb and use it as a launch pad to propel you to the top of the pinch.
Confidence is key with this obstacle. The actual act of climbing the rock is not that hard but it’s imperative you are full of confidence when you attack it otherwise you’ll want to dab the foot and that can only end in tears. Keep your feet on the ‘pegs!
It is all about the early balance and momentum.
Constant throttle. Smooth clutch action. Listen to your motor.
Be aware of your surroundings. Make sure the dirt or rock is grippy. Ensure you pick the best line.
Rev your bike to the moon and then hit it.
Panic. If your drive to start with isn’t good, stop and try again.
Lean back. You’ll loop out fast. Ensure you’re over the front at all times.