Black ice is one of the most common causes of accidents in the mountains, especially during the winters. This video shows how a Royal Enfield Bullet gets stuck on a patch of black ice while the KTM 390 Duke crosses it without much problem.
The video shows that a Royal Enfield Bullet is parked on the middle of the road and the riders standing nearby. The bike is parked at an incline and the black ice is very much visible in the video. The KTM rider, Lokesh Swami stops and asks the Royal Enfield guy to take the bike forward but they say that it is not moving forward. The rider on the KTM 390 Duke then goes over the black ice and parks his bike and comes back for help.
It can be seen in the video that the Royal Enfield bike starts skidding on the black ice as soon as the rider starts to move it forward. Black ice is extremely slippery and it is quite difficult to get traction on the surface. Later, the bike was reversed by keeping a stone behind the rear tyre to ensure that it does not move backwards and then was pushed forward by a few people. It sure looks like a hectic task but why did the Royal Enfield Bullet could not cross the patch while the KTM 390 Duke did it quite easily? Even a Himalayan can be spotted in the video, which comes out without much problem.
The Royal Enfield Bullet’s heavy weight acts against it in such situations. Due to the heavy bike, it became difficult to move it on the incline on a slippery surface. Also, the grooves on the Royal Enfield Bullet tyre’s seems to be non-existent. The tyre treads help in getting traction and gripping the surface in a better way. Otherwise, the heavy low-end torque of the Royal Enfield Bullet would have been sufficient to move it forward.
What is black ice and how to ride on it?
Black ice forms overnight in the cold areas when the temperature drops near to zero degree Celsius. Water flowing on the road freezes to become a very slippery surface. This patch cannot be identified easily as it looks like a wet patch. Most of the bikers fall on the black ice due to sudden braking or accelerating. Many times, when a rider realises that the surface below is slippery, they brake in panic and lose balance.
The best way to tackle black ice is to identify it and ride slow over it. As it is difficult to identify black ice, it is always better to ride slowly during early morning hours and slow down even more after spotting any wet patch on the road. The black ice melts after the sun rises but in the shadow area, they can stay for much longer time. Always use both the feet to balance the bike over the black ice and ride as slow as possible. It is important to maintain the same speed without changing the gears while riding on the black ice. Also, maintaining the tyre properly ensures optimum grip. Always change the tyres after the tread depth goes below 1.5mm to get the maximum grip out of every type of surface.