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While my first reaction to the surge in fat tire bikes made for hunting was one of curiosity, that has turned to excitement for trying out this new mode of transportation. Will this be another of those trends that ends up as a bit of hunting history, or will they find a niche that offers long-lasting usefulness? Speaking as a DIY bowhunter, let’s hope it’s the latter.
Cogburn understands that there are people who use a bike as human-powered access to the backcountry to hunt and fish. It will be fun to see how other hunters use this machine and what innovations will be made to upcoming editions.
Johnson hunts on-the-go with the bike along remote forest trails. We must note that we do not recommend riding with a loaded gun. We also urge readers to check local and state regulations first if they decide to pedal into the forest in pursuit of game.
Every stick, vine, rock, branch and felled log finds a way to impede your progress — and that’s just going downhill. Skinned ankles, banged-up shins and the never-pleasant lunging off the seat and onto the bar of the bike are good-enough reasons not even to try it.
Recently electric fat-tire bikes have entered the realm of hunting. The ATA show this year featured a few different national brands of these bikes being marketed specifically at the hunting community. Sticking with my mantra of being hyper-local, I was able to get my hands on entry level Shooter-750 manufactured by a company called Huntin’ Wheelz based right here in Clare, Michigan. This electric hunting bike’s specs equal or exceed the brands with the bigger marketing budgets but at a fraction of the cost.
I purchased this bike to replace a mongoose Ledge 2.1 from Walmart. (lasted only 12 miles then fell apart). Although the bike came with crappy tires, front forks AND shock did not match the product description. i am still happy with it overall. It looks cool and rides very well for being so inexpensive. EASY ASSEMBLY.
Felt founder Jim https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electric_bicycle an avid bow hunter, wanted to design a rig that could shlep gear far into the backcountry for multi-day hunting trips. His answer: the concept Bosch-powered Outfitter than can haul a trailer with up to 100 pounds of equipment. The trailer we saw at the show was a modified model from B.O.B., but Felt is apparently working on a design of its own for 2015.
The frame’s lowered top tube maximizes stand over clearance and rider comfort, making it easy to mount and dismount. The frame is engineered to ensure an efficient, responsive ride and stable handling, even at low speed.
While he’s not one to brag, Rick’s frames are the go-to choice of riders from the legendary DFL Cross Dress Series to the Cycle Messenger World Championships. They will all tell you the same thing: There is no finer frame than a Hunter.
The low slung top tube is key with a the scabbard. I had no idea how much I roll off the back of a bike when I dismount. With a gun or bow is sticking up off the back of your trusty steed, you must go over the top tube to dismount. In heavy hunting gear the movement is like high stepping over an electric fence.
I received my ALL TERRAIN 750 right before my month long Colorado archery deer and elk hunt. I was able to quietly get in to places in 15 minutes that used to take me over an hour to hike in! If you are a serious hunter that wants to get away from the crowds to hunt then you NEED one of these bikes. I did a ton of research and comparing and M2S hands down has the best bike / customer service for the price, period!
But when trucks, four-wheelers and marching hunters break the eight-month silence and begin spreading foreign smells through the woods, it takes almost no time at all before the deer completely change their ways, transforming, seemingly overnight, into nervous, mostly nocturnal animals that proceed with caution, scenting the wind before emerging from thick cover. They pattern human movement — not difficult to do when humans are associated with running motors and exhaust fumes.
The scabbard is built as a transport for guns and bows and not for quick removal and hunting while under way. The actual rubber mounts for the guns are geared toward sleek weapons and not a short stubby shotgun and I have had to improvise the upper attachment.
So the design was coming together in my mind, actually it kind of distracted me from the hunt. The bike would be kind of a super-muttonmaster, a 29-er with fairly relaxed geometry and a long-ish rear center. It would have a strong, solid, welded-on steel rack like the muttonmaster. The bags would be an epic pair of panniers running from the front end of the bike all the way to the end of the rack. The seat, shoved way down into the frame, would help carry the bags. It would have gears and disk brakes. The rear brake had to be especially powerful to hold the loaded bike on downhill runs. And, it would probably run front suspension.
My first idea was to devise a means of carrying the bow across the handlebars somehow, but they were too narrow, and the handbrakes were in the way, so that proved impractical. The handlebars would have to serve another purpose. A visit to a local bike shop produced a large handlebar-mounted basket; perfect for carrying my backpack or other bulky items, it removes easily when not needed. A fanny pack fastened to the handlebars is another good option for carrying smaller items.
I use a Pack Rack bow rack mounted to my handlebars. I carry a couple sets of snubbers in case one breaks. I also invested in a VistaLite halogen lights with three nightstick Ni-MH 2200mAH batteries. I have a 5W and 10W on the bars and one more 5W light for my helmet or hat It attaches with Velcro and works really well. A bit pricey but well worth it. I also have a set of bar ends to change up my posture and leverage while riding long distances.
While the Outfitter was intended for hunters, we think it will suit anyone who wants to bring lots of gear into the woods under their own power—with some help from that Bosch eDrive. Several photographers remarked that the set-up is ideal for lugging professional camera equipment in for a shoot, says Felt Sales Manger IanMcCabe. And you can always carry beer. One hundred pounds of beer.
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I bought this bike with intended use on my hunting farms. I’ve ridden it now off road several times, and to say I’m blown away, is an understatement. This bike simply blew me away on all fronts. The motor is super strong and pulls me around great. I’m 6’2 210 so I’m not a small guy either. Like others have said, if this thing doesn’t make you smile the first time you ride it, you’re just not a happy person!!!!
What I learned wringing the bike out: first thing was, the controls needed to be reversed (I’m right handed) so I could control the bike with my left hand while keeping the rifle from falling off my shoulder. Also, I push the bike from the left side and I wanted the rear brake on the left for control on downhill stretches. You wouldn’t want your load to drag you downslope to an uncertain fate ….
The rewards can be great—in our camp that means a fair share of public-lands elk nearly every year. Don’t let the locked gates or trails stop you if you have the will to get in shape, equip a plain-old mountain bike, and get pedaling—your next elk may be just around the corner.