Friday, January 04, 2013

To the FAT BIKE Dark Side I Go




One of my resolutions for the New Year is to keep my blogs up to date.  Whatever I post here will also be posted to

While in Johannesburg, South Africa I was informed that road cycling may not be safe:  Cars are not bike friendly and a cyclist stands a chance of getting "bike jacked" if cycling alone.  My wife knows I "have to cycle".  At her school where she works my wife was chatting with a group of teachers who she knows cycle.  One of them said: "Maybe Joe wants to try mountain biking.  We've got our daughter's bike he could borrow."  Another way to cycle: I'll try it.

Went for a ride with the Johannesburg Mountain Bike Club.  Remember what I said about bike jacking? Their club rule for any group from beginner to advanced:  Must have at least 6 riders for a group to ride.  Strength in numbers!  Oh, the sweep carried a special device that should the group run into trouble gets triggered to send a signal for help to the police.  I fell in love with mountain biking!!  Never had the need to try it before.  Wish I had.  No cars on single track. 

Leaving Johannesburg to return home for good I sold the mountain bike and vowed to buy another once I returned to the states.  In the meantime I had been following a thread on bikejournal http://www.bikejournal.com  about Fat Bikes.  The Fat Bike Thread intriqued me about the versatility of a Fat Bike.

Quickly Fat Bikes go back to development in Alaska.  Some history here.

I kept vacillating between a Fat Bike and a "29er" mountain bike.  The more I read about a Fat Bike the “interested”  I got. 

In October a decision to move to the Bend Oregon area sealed the decision.  Bend has a reputation for being a mountain biker's paradise.  Our area, Sunriver, has 31 miles of paved bike paths and is near many forest roads good for mountain biking.  I visited a bike shop in mid Decmeber that sold Surly Pugsleys. None in stock.  Went to a shop that had Salsa Mukluks.  Hmmm...one in my size.  Orange.  Couldn't test ride it outside but was able to ride inside a big open area of the building.  Felt Ok. 

Fat Bikes are in demand.  Some bike shops are already sold out of their 2013 allotment.   Chat with the wife.  Sold!  The mechanic said it would take 30 minutes to check it out and I could bring it home.  With over 12" of snow in the last week the bike/pedestrian paths get plowed but there's at leasat 1" of hard packed snow there. Perfect for a Fat Bike. 

I AM IN LOVE WITH THIS BIKE!!!  I've taken it on hard packed paths and on some areas where x country skiiers have packed down the snow. With this bike living in a cold snow plenty area I can ride any time me please.  And this bike pleases.

Fat Bike Thread on BikeJournal.com:
 http://www.bikejournal.com/thread.asp?ThreadID={029BF13C-5D45-4995-BC29-1FA3D74BD44A}



1 comment:

Pete Heal said...

Will you ride the Phat bike on PBP Joe? Hope all is well. Pete.