Unbound Gravel: How to Master Water Crossings

We are here at Unbound for the 2024 edition and figured it was a perfect time to share some gravel coaching tips.

If you take on a gravel event like Unbound you are going to come across water crossings.  These can be challenging as you never really know what’s on the bottom and how deep they are.

Tip #1 Enter the water with a controlled entrance speed. This usually means slowing down before the water to a speed you think you can get through safely. Avoid coming in too fast which can result in you flipping over if there are any holes and avoid slowing down too much to a speed you that must reaccelerate in the water to keep moving.

Tip #2 Shift to an easier gear before you enter the water. This is important so you are able to keep pedaling if the bottom is soft or bumpy or if the water is deep. Going in with too big of a gear could result in bogging down in the water and possibly getting stuck.

Tip #3 Position your weight back as you enter the water. This is best done standing and moving your butt up and back over the seat with your knees bent, and elbows out. This is called the “attack position.” This position is important as it helps you absorb the rocks and holes in the water crossing to keep your speed and get through the water.