2015 Arctic Cat M800 mod for low elevation tree riding
Hi everyone from Hors Piste Quebec!
It’s interesting that people from the east want to know what’s new in the west (riding techniques, new products, tuning, etc.) and folks from the west are curious about what kind of riding we do at low elevation, set-up, etc.
Things are a bit different for us: we don’t have a lot of open space or alpine bowls, our playground is actually under 3,500′ in Eastern Canada, but it’s a paradise for tight tree-riding.
The backcountry beginner usually rides on farm land or frozen lakes to learn the basics before playing in the woods, but intermediate and experts play on what we call an “Electric pylon session”. If you want the best playground, you have to head up to Gaspesia Chic Chocs Mountain, Monts Valin and others.
The snows out here contains more humidity than yours and so we need a nimble sled. The fluffy stuff disappears faster, but the snow piles up in the woods and we can ride pow longer if we ride tight terrain, so we need a reliable sled to go the distance in our playground.
Here is our top mod priority list to improve our cat’s fleet for 2015.
This sled definitely needs to float better. We decided to put on a pair of C&A Pro powder skis to help float better. 8 inches is better than the OEM 6 inches, trust me!
2) Float Plate/Bumper
For the same reason, we added a Skinz float plate and bumper to improve the nose-diving tendency. This is a great combo with the larger skis.
3) Too wide/Go Narrow
We used the Skinz Concept A-Arm kit to narrow the stance to 37″ wide. We also used 17″ Elka Stage 5 shocks to match the A-Arm kit. We really like the Elka coil over fully adjustable shocks with this set-up. Plush and easy to incite technical maneuvers.
4) Running Boards
The Skinz running boards are awesome, but you have to take the time to do it right! You have to use a cutting wheel to remove the stock boards. We really like that the running boards come with traction cleats that you can place wherever you want to customize your grip. Also the step-over tube on the running board helps us to roll the sled on its side easily.
6) Bag/Gas Rack
We put on a clean-looking and solid gas rack and a waterproof tunnel bag for long days.
7) Shed some weight
It’s easy to shed 14 pounds by installing a lightweight silencer can.
8) Rear Bumper and Snow Flap
The OEM flap is too long, and there is isn’t enough space for your hand to grip it firmly.
A special thanks to Arctic Cat Junior Mechanique, Skinz, C&A Pro, MSD, and Elka to help us build this project sled!