Originally Posted by snowrider
I've found most of what you said to be true, except for the knobbies. I get a lot of mixed surfaces, and I find full on thick snow cover is the least common surface for street riding in winter. This may depend on how often it's plowed where you are. I rode on street tires, not even dual sport tires every winter but the last one, where I had the stock trailwings on the DR. I was always opposed to knobbies because of the mixed surfaces and the fact that usually I was riding on a slippery road surface which is not like dirt at all. Now I'm very interested in what dual sport tires can do and will be trying TKC80s this winter though I think Anakees would be better. I've always just wanted a little more grip in snow, not a lot, because I want something that breaks loose evenly and predictably, no matter how early.
This is a great point. Snow is the least common riding surface around here, too. The studs were the most important part of my setup. I knew the knobbies were deep enough to put studs in and didn't want to waste a street tire seeing if they were deep enough to hold a stud.* Compact snow and ice is the worst surface and the studs handled them with ease. Frankly, I don't have to stones to run sideways up a hill all winter
I went with the most reliable (read: overkill) setup I could think of and it worked well. The studs do break loose, but there's a definite choice with them whether you want to tractor up a hill without breaking it loose or go for broke and spin it like crazy.
Right now it's the distance that's hurting me- 30 miles is well beyond my limits for a day-in day-out bike commute. I am in the process of plating my TTR125 and I have my GF almost convinced she can commute 3 miles on it daily
My good pictures come from one storm- nobody else was getting anywhere so there were lots of people standing around to take pictures. You and I both know we'll never have pictures of the really good stuff and we'll never be able to truly explain the sensation of taking 2 wheels on a surface most 4-wheelers have trouble with...
*That said, nothing's better than the hookup of a studded knobbie when you're drag racing some yahoo in a jacked-up 4X4 on the first night of a good winter storm.