The Power to Ride More Trails
It’s no secret that we love the ability to explore more on our Specialized Turbo Levo electric mountain bikes and every tour we run without fail our guests (and people in the street) ask us the same questions...
How far can you go? How long does the battery last?
Well the answer to these questions is very complicated and takes in so many variables that it can be hard to answer simply. So we decided that over the last few months we would put the bikes to the test and see what the exact answer could possibly be!
The basic facts you can find on the big wide world of the interweb tells us we can get 30-35km on Full Turbo mode! But is that on flat terrain? What about the weight of me and my backpack? How far will I go and how hard will it be setting the bike at 50% power? AAAAARRRRRRRHHHHHHHH!
For the first adventure we headed out to Pemberton in the Southern Forests Region of Western Australia to take on two days riding on the Mundi Biddi and meet up with a friend riding the whole trail. The plan was to base in town and ride 35-40km north and then return day 1 with our friend Colin. Then repeat the same but heading south on day two.
The beautiful town of Pemberton, where we based our adventure.
Without actually knowing what we might be in for on our first day out I loaded up my backpack with two spare batteries (one for me, one for Jodie), water and other bits and pieces, Jodie was in charge of carrying the food and emergency spare parts/tools for the day and her water.
At the start of the day I set my bike to 35% support and Jodie had 65% support (we stayed in these settings pretty much the whole day) and off we went, not pushing hard to go as fast as we could but just cruising along enjoying the amazing southern forests that we were riding through. After about 20+km we were discussing the fact that it had felt like we had done a lot of downhill thus far and our return trip might be harder. The climbs felt short and descents long and fun so we were expecting to be riding uphill a lot on our return.
At 35kms we stopped for lunch and it worked out perfectly to meet Col who was heading south on his own 10 day Mundi Biddi adventure. Oh, by the way Col is a freak on a bike, he was cruising easily on his Fat Bike loaded with pannier packs while we rode ebikes next to him on our return to Pemberton.
Jodie emptied her battery around 55km (3.5hrs) and I finished the 75km (5hr) day with 17% left in tank of battery number one. BEER TIME!!! We both felt the day was highly enjoyable and didn’t feel completely rooted despite riding for 5 hours and carrying heavy packs. What about that feeling from earlier in the day that we would be climbing up hill most of the way back? Not there at all! It strangely felt the same as the morning, short climbs followed by long enjoyable descents. A perfect day riding if you ask me! The Turbo Levos definitely gave us the #powertoridemoretrails.
Day 2 was much like Day 1 highly enjoyable riding in some of the most beautiful forests the State has to offer, I ran a slightly lower power setting all day and managed 80.44km with 1544m of vertical gain over 5hrs 11mins with 13% left in the battery. The take home from this adventure, the ebikes allowed us to head out for two big days on the bikes in a row without feeling really worn out. The best thing that we both thought was the ebikes shortened the uphills and seemed to lengthen the downhills, winning in both cases I say!
After these two days it was time to put the bikes to the ultimate endurance test… over 126km and 3400 vertical meters in the Seven bike race in Nannup, Western Australia.
I’ll start by saying the Seven bike race is freaking amazing and a must do for all lovers of off road cycling that want a huge challenge. I’ll also say that other than our general riding of fun on the MTB trails around Margaret River and our winery tours, we both did next to zero training in the lead up to Seven. I took on the full Seven 126km 3468 vertical meter course and Jodie attacked the shorter but no less challenging Three 50km 1100 vertical meter race. My goal for the day was not to be fast but to see if I could answer the question I always get asked
HOW FAR CAN YOU GO ON ONE BATTERY?
The morning of the race was very cold misty and dark and I was concerned the very cold temps would affect the battery life but we couldn’t really do anything about that. I set my bike to 10% support, Jodie was set at 25% with 50% as a hill climb back-up. At first light the race started and we took off for the days adventure of 7 long climbs uphill, 7 very long fast down hills, 126kms of amazing scenery and sharing it with 550 like minded humans on bikes. I carried one back-up battery in my backpack just in case I couldn’t finish on one battery. Anyone want to have a quick guess of just how far you can go on our Specialized Turbo Levo hard tail mountain bike? I now can definitively answer the question and it’s NOT 126km and 3468 vertical meters, lucky I took that back-up battery. The answer is...
5hrs:29min 101km with about 2800 vertical meters of hill climbs!
Now remember this was at only 10% support so not an easy day out on the bike for me, could I have done it with zero support on my standard old school acoustic natural aspirated retro non assisted bike? Probably but dam it would have been a suffer fest (that’s next year).
So what does one do with a second full back-up battery for his ebike and 25kms left in the ride? Plug it in, set it to FULL TURBO and blast the hell out of the last two climbs and ride as fast uphill as some go downhill that’s what!!!!! There were some angry comments claiming I was cheating, but remember… you can only cheat a race, I was just out to ride my bike (not race) and have fun and that’s just what I was doing.
Riding high above the mist on one of the Seven climbs
What about Jodie I hear you say, well she too had an amazing ride experience. With her bike set to 25% and 50% support for the big hills she rode for 3hr:06mins and had 26% left in the battery when she crossed the finish line. Safe to say she would have never had the experience of riding bikes in that part of world without the Specialized Turbo Levo. Did it take away from her experience? No. Did it have an effect on the stoke level? Yes it increased it!
So now we can answer the question how far we can ride our ebikes.
Don’t worry though our Easy Ride Winery Brewery Tour is made to be easy for everyone so you’ll get full power the whole day with only one battery and plenty left in the tank so there is no huff or puff! Check it out here Easy Ride Winery Tour
My question now is, if you have an electric bike just how far do you go?
If you can answer that we’d love to hear from you and your ultimate ebike adventures, but if you can’t answer the question you know what you have to do. Get out and test it, hit the road, take that trail and have your own ebike adventure. Or get in contact and we can help you plan an adventure with us in the South West.