A cold February day seems like as good a time as any to share the latest concept from the designers at Venn, an Industrial Design Consultancy based in Turkey. “Sno” (as you might guess from the name) is a concept for a snow bike with a ski to replace the front wheel and twin treads in the rear to keep the bike on the surface and moving forward. I don’t know much else about the design, except that the Z-shaped frame features a Slingshot like tensioned cable element. It appears from the renderings that it might accept a front wheel in lieu of the ski, but the rear assembly indicates that this is definitely a dedicated snow only bike.
Going back to 2006, you may remember the KtracK. That was a similar idea that worked as a conversion to a standard mountain bike… and apparently it is still around. Since the KtraK first appeared nearly a decade ago, fat bikes have become much more popular for snow riding, so I wonder about the market for a human-powered, tread-driven bike like the Sno. It looks like fun, but seems like it would be difficult to ride uphill (and for pure downhill you might be better off with something like this). I am definitely not a snow bike expert though (as you can tell from this old post), so I would love to hear from those of you who do regularly ride off-road in deep snow. Would you like to try a bike like the Sno (or KtracK), or does a fat bike with 4 ½ inch tires at 15 PSI do the trick?
Update: I vaguely remembered having seen a drawing for a Victorian era ski bike when I wrote the post, but I didn’t see it in Sharp’s book at a quick glance. I did a little research after posting and found J.C. Steven’s, 1892 patent for an “Ice Velocipede”. Pretty interesting…read more on the history of ski bikes here.