Even with piles of snow on the ground, my son still asks to ride his bike outside EVERY SINGLE DAY. Since it’s only mid January and we’ve got at least another 3 months of the white stuff, I’ve decided that my stance on biking needs to change. After searching local outdoor forums for ideas, I stumbled across the solution for biking 365 days a year in Canada—Strider Snow Skis.
Although we don’t own a Strider, we were able to work with the local rep at RunBikesYYC to determine if the attachments were compatible with our Spawn Tengu. After a few minor modifications (compliments of my husband) we got the skis set up and ready to go! So here’s the nitty-gritty…
- The Set Up
Apart from the fact that my husband had to shave away some plastic, the skis themselves are easy to attach. Each ski has 2 looped velcro attachments that go around the wheels. There’s also a free-standing piece for the front and back tires to secure the wheel to the frame. You want to make sure they’re tight and secure but it only took me about 10 minutes to put them on with my toddler “helping”.
I prefer to have the bike set up before leaving the house since it can be a pain to gear up and fiddle with the attachments in the cold.
2. The Ride
The best way to see and understand how these skis perform is to check out my Instagram account (scroll down to find it). Since purchasing the skis, my son has already put on about 10 days (which isn’t bad since we only bought them 3 weeks ago!) and he’s totally addicted.
The skis are relatively stable but they do pick up speed. They aren’t meant for carving (no edges) so it’s easy to “hook a ski” if you plan on working in some tight turns. My 2yr was able to adjust quickly and balance however stopping at increased speed has been a little trickier. All in all, it definitely beats having rubber on ice and snow.
I recommend finding open terrain with hills that have a nice gradual run-off. The skis perform well in fresh powder and on packed, groomed trails. Since they are plastic, I’d avoid sun crusted and ice surfaces—especially since the falls hurt a lot more too.
3. The Issues
I hate to call these “issues” since the ski bike has been a major win in our book but being on the bike in the middle of winter has forced us to do some brainstorming… Keeping warm has been the biggest issue—especially hands.
Unfortunately our toddler (like most others) does not like wearing mitts/gloves and even if we do magically get him to wear them, they still fall off or they don’t allow him to properly grip the handle bars. Thankfully we were able to track down some ZippyRooz and they have been great. Bearing in mind, they are not meant for cold weather either, we put together some make-shift poggies from a pair of old fleece mitts that our toddler can slide his hands into, stay warm, and still grip the wheel.
The skis make biking downhill super fun but depending on the snow conditions it can be pretty difficult for a toddler to walk back up. To help speed things up (and work in a little exercise) my husband put together a tow rope and bungee cord. Although originally used to get him back up the hill, it’s become a great device that I can attach to my waist during cross country ski outings to bring him along! (More on this in another post!)
4. The Win
As you can see, we are definitely having fun and putting our Strider Snow Skis to good use. At $40 for the pair, I think there’s great value and it also lets you get in a lot of extra days on the balance bike. Once paired with a good ski helmet and pair of boots, you’re set for lots of fun days in the snow!
We are slowly building our Strider Ski posse and hope to see you out there!