Fat bikes – they’re all the rage! While many consider fat bikes to be a trend, they are, in fact, here to stay!The hottest trend in the mountain biking world right now is the oversized bike that can accommodate tires up to 5 inches wide.
Fat bikes are hard to miss. Their bulbous, “fat” tires roll over virtually anything, which makes them an ideal winter mode of transportation because they help cyclists traverse snowy and icy trails with ease and traction.Sounds good, but why ride a fat bike? Fat bikes behave much like a mountain bike but, in many cases, they are much more versatile. You can practically ride them anywhere and they are particularly useful during winter rides in snowy conditions. They are also great beginner bikes and will make you feel like an 8 year-old again, bouncing gleefully all over the trails.
So, how are fat bikes different than other mountain bikes? Many fat bike models today are similar to “normal” mountain bikes, which have slacker head tube angles, lower stand-over heights, thru axles, and tapered head tubes. The main difference is the tires. The wider tires have more traction in both dirt and snow. They climb better than almost any mountain bike and the fat tires provide greater cushion that feels like extra suspension.
But what makes them special is they entice you to ride outside when it’s cold! According to the post, Fat Biking 101: 10 Things You Need to Know Before Biking in the Snow, most people do not ride when it is cold because, well, it’s cold. Fat bikes offer a unique experience and allow you to explore familiar trails in a new light. Fat biking lifts the winter doldrums by giving you a new freedom to ride off-road.
Sounds good so far, right? You might be wondering in what kind of conditions can you ride your fat bike? Fat bikes can ride pretty much anywhere. They do really well on dirt but they are also very capable in the snow. Packed snow will feel very much like riding on dirt. Pushing through heaps of freshly fallen snow will provide more of a challenge and there will be some days when riding is simply impossible. Remember, while sliding around on ice may be fun, ice is ice. The bike will still go down if you are not careful riding on slippery subs.
There are other factors to consider with fat bikes – as in, how to stay warm, best pedal and footwear options, and basically, how does a fat bike ride?
Are you curious about fat bike riding? Demo a fat bike at Peak Cycles Bicycle Shop in Golden, Colorado and stay tuned for more upcoming blog posts on fat bike bike selections, cycling apparel, hydration strategies, fat bike bike parts, and accessories.