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  1. #1
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    My first time fatbiking

    I demoed 5 bikes at Winterbike Fest in Burke, VT today an I must say it was a good experience. I've been wanting to try out some fatbikes for quite some time but never got around to it until today.
    I learned three things today about fatbikes:
    1:You will crash, just you don't always know when
    2:Mountain bike techniques will most likely cause you to crash, especially if you start to lose control of the front.
    3: Suspension fatbikes are not as fun as fully rigid fatbikes.
    Although I demoed a full suspension fatbike my favourites were the Salsa Blackborrow followed my a Mukluk and a Rocky Mountain Blizzard with the Bluto fork.
    I liked fatbiking and it is really fun but I'm not sure that I want to fork over $2k to get a bike I'll ride maybe 5 times a year.

  2. #2
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    Oh, you just couldn't keep your mouth shut, eh? ;-)

    Here's the takeaway from what I read of your experience; 1) Yeppur... snow riding is more variable than any other form, and can be far more challenging. 2) If you think fatties are only for snow - 5 times a year - you are not worthy. Give your head a shake and keep your mind open. If riding is not solely done for fun, and challenge, then there is something wrong. If the type of riding fatties excel at is not your thing, skip it. You won't get it.

    Plenty of folks have sold their skinny stuff. Fat aint for everyone, but it won't be for anyone unless they are able to embrace it. Some can, some can't.

    YMMV.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by TrailMaker View Post
    Oh, you just couldn't keep your mouth shut, eh? ;-)

    Here's the takeaway from what I read of your experience; 1) Yeppur... snow riding is more variable than any other form, and can be far more challenging. 2) If you think fatties are only for snow - 5 times a year - you are not worthy. Give your head a shake and keep your mind open. If riding is not solely done for fun, and challenge, then there is something wrong. If the type of riding fatties excel at is not your thing, skip it. You won't get it.

    Plenty of folks have sold their skinny stuff. Fat aint for everyone, but it won't be for anyone unless they are able to embrace it. Some can, some can't.

    YMMV.
    Well I ski in winter, and there are few groomed trails near to my house. I also don't want to sell my nice skinny tire bikes, so I guess I'll wait a while before I get a fatty.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by CannondaleF9 View Post
    Well I ski in winter, and there are few groomed trails near to my house. I also don't want to sell my nice skinny tire bikes, so I guess I'll wait a while before I get a fatty.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by CannondaleF9 View Post
    I demoed 5 bikes at Winterbike Fest in Burke, VT today an I must say it was a good experience. I've been wanting to try out some fatbikes for quite some time but never got around to it until today.
    I learned three things today about fatbikes:
    1:You will crash, just you don't always know when
    2:Mountain bike techniques will most likely cause you to crash, especially if you start to lose control of the front.
    3: Suspension fatbikes are not as fun as fully rigid fatbikes.
    Although I demoed a full suspension fatbike my favourites were the Salsa Blackborrow followed my a Mukluk and a Rocky Mountain Blizzard with the Bluto fork.
    I liked fatbiking and it is really fun but I'm not sure that I want to fork over $2k to get a bike I'll ride maybe 5 times a year.
    Well, I'm glad this forum was here so you could get that off your chest.
    Veni vidi velo!

  6. #6
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    I never knew that the fatbike community was against people who test ride fatbikes.
    I was only saying what I thought about fatbiking, nothing more.

  7. #7
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    Glad you enjoyed it. I'm out once or twice a weekend, so it makes sense for me. I'm loving riding on snow. It is a challenge, I do not love riding in deeper snow, it's too slow and I love speed. But hard packed is so much fun.

    If it doesnt work for you all year, that's cool.

  8. #8
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    My first time fatbiking

    It is a year round bike for me now and I don't even have front suspension yet. People raved about the full squish fatties that came out. One is gonna be fielded in downhill in summer. Every year they are becoming more and more a year round bike.

  9. #9
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    My first time fatbiking

    Quote Originally Posted by CannondaleF9 View Post
    I never knew that the fatbike community was against people who test ride fatbikes.
    I was only saying what I thought about fatbiking, nothing more.
    I was up there today as well. Did the 4 hour ride! Winterfest Ruled.

    This forum is pretty harsh, which I still can't figure out why... It's the exact opposite of the 300 fully supportive and enthusiastic bikers today up at Burke. Maybe it's a Vermont thing.
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  10. #10
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    Rent one again and try it in the summer in technical single track.
    :thumbsup:It doesn't matter what I ride as long as I ride it Rubber Side Down●~●.

  11. #11
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    You can ride one in summer, but I prefer not to most of the time, as it's lethargic and slow.

    You can also get 29er rims for your fatbike and ride it like a normal 29er hardtail, which is a pretty nice feature.

    The thing is, it's not like a snowboard or skis where if you go to the mountain in the summer time, they just won't work on dirt and rocks. A fatbike will work on any trail in the summer just fine. Some people actually like riding them in these conditions. I say make sure to test this first before buying, but for winter riding and getting out there when other people are all holed-up, it's great.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by CannondaleF9 View Post
    I never knew that the fatbike community was against people who test ride fatbikes.
    I was only saying what I thought about fatbiking, nothing more.
    Fat biking is like any other sport. It takes a bit of work to ride the tricky stuff if you've never done it before. This is my first season and I've had an absolute blast. It's gotten me outside when I would have been stuck inside during previous winters. There has been a lot of trial and error with tire pressure, riding position, bike setup to get things dialed in. This forum is a great place to learn about fat biking. Good luck, and keep pedaling!
    Last edited by Chinman; 02-28-2015 at 10:01 PM.

  13. #13
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    I sold my 29er when I bought my Farley. Not all Fat Bikes are designed for slow snow cruisin
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  14. #14
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    #1 for sure. I only have 10 miles of fat biking under my belt and have crashed/fallen more times than I have ALL of last season on my 29er. Snow is soft and the speeds are slow so it's not a big deal, in fact it makes falling fun.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wisconsinite762 View Post
    #1 for sure. I only have 10 miles of fat biking under my belt and have crashed/fallen more times than I have ALL of last season on my 29er. Snow is soft and the speeds are slow so it's not a big deal, in fact it makes falling fun.
    Yeah it is really fun to crash fatbiking, especially after what I call a "fatbike hop" where after the front slides out, one foot tries to maintain balance and not fall over, but drags the bike along with one foot on the opposite pedal.

    Quote Originally Posted by RockyJo1 View Post
    Rent one again and try it in the summer in technical single track.
    I do want to demo one in the summer just to see how it rides on dirt compared to snow.

    Quote Originally Posted by tedo View Post
    I was up there today as well. Did the 4 hour ride! Winterfest Ruled.

    This forum is pretty harsh, which I still can't figure out why... It's the exact opposite of the 300 fully supportive and enthusiastic bikers today up at Burke. Maybe it's a Vermont thing.
    Yeah Winterbike was awesome!
    I kinda wish I could have ridden longer there but there's always next year I guess.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by CannondaleF9 View Post
    I never knew that the fatbike community was against people who test ride fatbikes.
    I was only saying what I thought about fatbiking, nothing more.
    We are against people drawing hasty conclusions on a limited sample and spouting off about it here, where people are passionate about these kinds of bikes.

    1. crashing can be limited significantly with practice and experience. I rode skinny bikes in the snow for a lot of years before riding a fatbike. the skills transfer over mostly, so I don't crash TOO much.
    2. they're still mountain biking techniques. riding in snow is a specific set of conditions with its own characteristics. it's not a dry summer trail. but if that's all you know, you're going to have a difficult time on any bike until you get the skills down. snow has a great tendency to expose limitations in your bike handling skills no matter what bike you're riding.
    3. maybe for you in the limited set of conditions you experienced during this demo event. but take a fatbike out into different conditions and you will probably feel differently.

    sure, where I live I'd have a hard time justifying a fatbike designed to optimize winter riding. Winters here are far too variable, and have too much time without any snow whatsoever to be able to justify a monster bike that can fit 100mm rims with 5" tires. So when I bought a fatbike, I bought one that works well in the widest range of conditions I have available to me. It's still pretty good in snow (much better than what I had), plus, with the suspension and the geometry, it's awesome on dry trails, and especially rocky stuff. Now I have a bike that works better for me on a wider range of conditions than my old bike.

  17. #17
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    I like riding a fat bike so much. It's difficult to not go out right now. I already rode today, yesterday and the day before. So, I need to rest the bones. Hitting the trails that are in my back yard under the almost full moon would be sweet though. Night riding on the snow is sick. I like to hit the slopes too. When it snows and conditions are great, like a lot of this last month, I go riding in the glades at Gore. The rest of the time I'll be getting fat and mixing in my 29'er when the snow melts for sure. There was just too much wasted time to ride a bike and now there's fun way to do it on the snow. I'll bet you $$$ that if you get a fat bike. You'll ride it more than 5 time in a year.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails My first time fatbiking-1st-fat-bike-ride-santanoni-farm-21.jpg  

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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by ADKMTNBIKER View Post
    I like riding a fat bike so much. It's difficult to not go out right now. I already rode today, yesterday and the day before. So, I need to rest the bones. Hitting the trails that are in my back yard under the almost full moon would be sweet though. Night riding on the snow is sick. I like to hit the slopes too. When it snows and conditions are great, like a lot of this last month, I go riding in the glades at Gore. The rest of the time I'll be getting fat and mixing in my 29'er when the snow melts for sure. There was just too much wasted time to ride a bike and now there's fun way to do it on the snow. I'll bet you $$$ that if you get a fat bike. You'll ride it more than 5 time in a year.
    +1 (ha, plus one is too short of a post so I had to add this note)

  19. #19
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    [QUOTE=Harold;11804984]We are against people drawing hasty conclusions on a limited sample and spouting off about it here, where people are passionate about these kinds of bikes.[QUOTE]

    ^^^This, though "against" (your word) is too strong.

    OP, I tried kale chips the other day. Everyone says they are great and good for you, too, but I didn't like them. Just wanted you all to know. Ummm... who cares right?

    Your thread is kind of like that. So you don't think you need a fatbike? Fine. Where do we go from there? Should the forum try to talk you into needing one? Don't think so. Fatbikes aren't a need for everyone, but fill a need for many. You didn't ask for advice, asked no questions, never even mentioned snow conditions (critical in the fatbike world). You tried it (5 bikes - awesome! - would be nice to know which ones). You made up your mind and shared your opinion. Thread over. (Or maybe not.)

    Seriously you seem like a nice guy. Lots of folks decide fatbikes are stupid without even trying 1, let a lone 5. Cheers, vb
    Veni vidi velo!

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by CannondaleF9 View Post
    snip..... I'm not sure that I want to fork over $2k to get a bike I'll ride maybe 5 times a year.
    That is why I sold my mountain bike and my cross bike and only ride fat now.
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by TrailMaker View Post
    Oh, you just couldn't keep your mouth shut, eh? ;-)

    Here's the takeaway from what I read of your experience; 1) Yeppur... snow riding is more variable than any other form, and can be far more challenging. 2) If you think fatties are only for snow - 5 times a year - you are not worthy. Give your head a shake and keep your mind open. If riding is not solely done for fun, and challenge, then there is something wrong. If the type of riding fatties excel at is not your thing, skip it. You won't get it.

    Plenty of folks have sold their skinny stuff. Fat aint for everyone, but it won't be for anyone unless they are able to embrace it. Some can, some can't.

    YMMV.
    My fat bike excels in snowpacked conditions, my Moots ybb excels at dirt single track, my Hamsten road bike excels at smooth pavement. One bike can't excel in every condition. Some get it, others get passed on a bike not optimized for the conditions.

    I embrace using the right tool for the job, and letting everyone else choose their own ride. If you want to ride fat all the time, fine, just pull over when I come up behind you.

  22. #22
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    I don't have any issue with the original post at all. At least the guy has taken the time to ride some different bikes before forming an opinion. Many folks haven't even ridden a fat bike and they write them off.

    I bought my Fattie ONLY as a means to stay active over the winter months, 'cos I hate the idea of spinning indoors. I never expected to actually enjoy it.

    Now I'm riding around like a crazy person loving every minute of it.

    We're all in it for different reasons and it affects us all differently. I love being out at dusk and catching a neat sunset over the Bay of Green Bay, or being miles into the deep woods and stopping to listen to the sound of complete silence. But that's just me.

    Kudos to the OP for taking the time to try the bikes and for sharing his thoughts.

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  23. #23
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    My first time fatbiking

    [QUOTE=veloborealis;11805213][QUOTE=Harold;11804984]We are against people drawing hasty conclusions on a limited sample and spouting off about it here, where people are passionate about these kinds of bikes.

    ^^^This, though "against" (your word) is too strong.

    OP, I tried kale chips the other day. Everyone says they are great and good for you, too, but I didn't like them. Just wanted you all to know. Ummm... who cares right?

    Your thread is kind of like that. So you don't think you need a fatbike? Fine. Where do we go from there? Should the forum try to talk you into needing one? Don't think so. Fatbikes aren't a need for everyone, but fill a need for many. You didn't ask for advice, asked no questions, never even mentioned snow conditions (critical in the fatbike world). You tried it (5 bikes - awesome! - would be nice to know which ones). You made up your mind and shared your opinion. Thread over. (Or maybe not.)

    Seriously you seem like a nice guy. Lots of folks decide fatbikes are stupid without even trying 1, let a lone 5. Cheers, vb
    +1

    Well stated. I found nothing of value in his original post, but many pieces of friendly "community" advice in the comments.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by sbsbiker View Post
    just pull over when I come up behind you.
    STRAVA!!!!!!!!

    Sorry, couldn't help myself.

    I'd agree with Velo. Thanks for sharing your experience OP, nothing wrong with that at all.

    Unfortunately, it's finished with a bit of a hanging chad, and folks who love these bikes don't like dangly bits of unsettled opinion. It didn't seem like you really wanted to be persuaded, but darn it, we're still gonna try like hell!

    I don't ride my all year, all the time, but I do ride it a fair bit, year round, and like crazy once the snow is good enough.

    29+ FS has taken over as my favorite summer wheels, and I don't see that changing any time soon.

    If you literally have to sell a bike to fit another in, I get it. But with so many new models coming out seemingly every week, as well as a tidal wave of cheap off brand models, the upgrade market is strong, so the used market is full of decent quality, lightly ridden offerings. So, well under a grand, and you have a bike to play with, and can likely get near that in a years time, if your thoughts on your estimated usage prove accurate.

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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by CannondaleF9 View Post
    I never knew that the fatbike community was against people who test ride fatbikes.
    I was only saying what I thought about fatbiking, nothing more.
    Don't take it personally. There was a time when fatbiking was so niche that it needed all the cheerleading it could get.

    It's past that phase and being pushed in all different directions with a zealousness that isn't uncommon for a newly popular sport that still has the psychology of insecurity front and centre.

    As a community it feels to me where we are at the high school level of maturity where it's all or nothing and whatever is hot must be the best answer to every question.

    That will change over time as the novelty wears off and reality sets in.

    Sort of like when you get a new bike and you ride it for everything despite having better bikes for a particular ride. Eventually the new bike phase winds down and you grab whichever bike is best again.

    Don't let it get you down. Skiing and riding skinny tired bikes is great.

    Not owning a fatbike will not lead to total misery.

    Plus when you get around to owning a fatbike perhaps we'll have evolved to 2nd year college/university maturity?
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  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by ADKMTNBIKER View Post
    I like riding a fat bike so much. It's difficult to not go out right now. I already rode today, yesterday and the day before. So, I need to rest the bones. Hitting the trails that are in my back yard under the almost full moon would be sweet though. Night riding on the snow is sick.
    +1

    I think I will still go out on my fatbike this afternoon anyways, though. Last night's moonlight ride was incredible: white snow, dark trees, sky full of stars. Lights not necessary.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by vikb View Post
    Plus when you get around to owning a fatbike perhaps we'll have evolved to 2nd year college/university maturity?
    Funny you're saying that about the responses the OP is getting, considering the OP's own posting history on mtbr.

    I don't care if you like fatbikes or not. Not everybody needs to love my favorite [insert whatever here]. But I WILL call out anyone for overgeneralizing based on a limited sample.

    If the OP had rephrased things as follows, I doubt many would have given him a hard time over it.

    I demoed 5 bikes at Winterbike Fest in Burke, VT today an I must say it was a good experience. I've been wanting to try out some fatbikes for quite some time but never got around to it until today.
    I learned three things today about fatbikes:
    1: You will crash, just you don't always know when
    2: They require slightly different handling skills to avoid crashing, especially if you start to lose control of the front.
    3: I enjoyed fully rigid fatbikes more on groomed snow [ed. making an assumption about conditions - I have no idea because OP didn't say] than fatbikes with suspension.

    I got to demo a full suspension fatbike, but my favourites were the Salsa Blackborow followed by a Mukluk and a Rocky Mountain Blizzard with the Bluto fork.

    I liked fatbiking and it is really fun but I have a hard time justifying at least $2k to get a bike I'll ride maybe 5 times a year.

  28. #28
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    Get a fat bike right now and enjoy it. Or else.

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    You might find that fat bikes create a different experience on your local trails in the summer months too. I've been riding for a long time and appreciate mixing up the bikes when I can't mix up the trails.

    That said, I wouldn't buy a fat bike for $2k if I was only going to use it 5 times a year either. But I'm a rider, not a skier, riding is what I like to do. Some people just like to ride even when it doesn't make much sense to do so. This is the person the fat bike was created for.

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    i live in san diego and ride my fatbike on trails , beach and road.. my personal experience, a fatback with rigid fork is difficult to ride on the trails, especially on consecutive jumps.. it is very unforgiving and will throw you off the saddle.. with bluto, it is different ride.. you would ride faster where you would have to slow down with the rigid fork.. the big tires and front suspension are great on rocks, roots and what have you.. i had a kona wo for 2 mos and sold that for a specialized fatboy.. added bluto days later.. sold my 29er fs.. never tried riding in the snow (yet)..

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Co-opski View Post
    That is why I sold my mountain bike and my cross bike and only ride fat now.
    Well I just bought a new gravel grinder and I love my mountain bike so that isn't happening any time soon.

    Quote Originally Posted by MendonCycleSmith View Post

    If you literally have to sell a bike to fit another in, I get it. But with so many new models coming out seemingly every week, as well as a tidal wave of cheap off brand models, the upgrade market is strong, so the used market is full of decent quality, lightly ridden offerings. So, well under a grand, and you have a bike to play with, and can likely get near that in a years time, if your thoughts on your estimated usage prove accurate.

    Welcome to the club!
    Well there are more groomed fatbike trails near to my house than I initially thought, so maybe I'd go more than 5 times, probably around 10. I also might use a fatbike on some root covered trails in the summer too.

    Quote Originally Posted by ntm1973 View Post
    You might find that fat bikes create a different experience on your local trails in the summer months too. I've been riding for a long time and appreciate mixing up the bikes when I can't mix up the trails.

    That said, I wouldn't buy a fat bike for $2k if I was only going to use it 5 times a year either. But I'm a rider, not a skier, riding is what I like to do. Some people just like to ride even when it doesn't make much sense to do so. This is the person the fat bike was created for.
    Possibly I might try to replace skiing with fatbiking. I was gifted a season ski pass for Christmas so I'm trying to go out on the mountain as many times as possible. But I never know what will happen next year.

  32. #32
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    The only thing that bothers me about the OP is that he didn't completely fall in love with it! I'm a roadie. I tried a fat bike once and fell for it like a ton of bricks. Don't get me wrong; I'm still dying to get out on the Roubaix. But right now, I am obsessed with fat. OP, you can ski AND fat bike. Yay for cross training!

  33. #33
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    Conditions at KT's winter fest were about as challenging as you can imagine. A 4" rut going down the middle of the singletrack and the steeper the hills the deeper the ruts. Craters all over the place from people getting pitched off. Not good conditions for testing bikes or dipping a toe into the sport. No wonder the guy sounds a bit jaded.

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    That explains a lot.

  35. #35
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    Threads like this could be a SNL skit. Do some of you even hear yourselves? lol

    Riding a fat bike is like, well, riding a bike. You learn how to do it when your 5, and if your still into it, then it can be fun at 45 (errr, or 41 . Who cares about falling, technique, bike type, conditions, brand of bike, skill level, or strava.

    If you like riding bikes, then ride your damn bike, doesn't matter what size tires it has on it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by radair View Post
    Conditions at KT's winter fest were about as challenging as you can imagine. A 4" rut going down the middle of the singletrack and the steeper the hills the deeper the ruts. Craters all over the place from people getting pitched off. Not good conditions for testing bikes or dipping a toe into the sport. No wonder the guy sounds a bit jaded.
    sounds tragic. is it because there's been no warmup/freeze up at all? rode down my way yesterday and we've had over 100" of snow in just over a month with no thaws. snowmo trails rode super well yesterday, but were actually softer than last week and there's been no new snow in a week, cept for last night we got 3-4 inches.

    hmmm, to ski or to ride today. that new 3-4 could sway me to the skis

    rog

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pauldotcom View Post
    Threads like this could be a SNL skit. Do some of you even hear yourselves? lol

    Riding a fat bike is like, well, riding a bike. You learn how to do it when your 5, and if your still into it, then it can be fun at 45 (errr, or 41 . Who cares about falling, technique, bike type, conditions, brand of bike, skill level, or strava.

    If you like riding bikes, then ride your damn bike, doesn't matter what size tires it has on it.
    I agree with this. Riding bikes is fun, so let's just do that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by radair View Post
    Conditions at KT's winter fest were about as challenging as you can imagine. A 4" rut going down the middle of the singletrack and the steeper the hills the deeper the ruts. Craters all over the place from people getting pitched off. Not good conditions for testing bikes or dipping a toe into the sport. No wonder the guy sounds a bit jaded.
    It did get thrashed but I guess that's to be expected when 300+ riders, many brand new to snow riding, are out there. Dragging brakes plus HUGE groups of riders. Sunday they firmed up a bit so you could ride inside or outside some of the ruts. Friday the trails were amazing. I still had a great time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by radair View Post
    Conditions at KT's winter fest were about as challenging as you can imagine. A 4" rut going down the middle of the singletrack and the steeper the hills the deeper the ruts. Craters all over the place from people getting pitched off. Not good conditions for testing bikes or dipping a toe into the sport. No wonder the guy sounds a bit jaded.
    Hmmm. You must have went out late in the day. I went out for the 9:30 "Spicy" ride, and returned around 1:30pm. Trails were fine. They were REALLY good before noon, and gradually degraded. A few ruts here and there, but mostly great single-track... It's mountain biking... technical sections are okay.

    I just found this from Saturday:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9yu9h_YS0zk

    These trails are a perfect way to get into fatbiking. We don't really have groomed trails besides Catamount, down in Chitt / Wash Co., so the Kingdom Trails were like a perfect chocolate chip cookie, after a great prime rib.
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  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by tedo View Post
    Hmmm. You must have went out late in the day. I went out for the 9:30 "Spicy" ride, and returned around 1:30pm. Trails were fine. They were REALLY good before noon, and gradually degraded. A few ruts here and there, but mostly great single-track... It's mountain biking... technical sections are okay.
    I started my first loop at 10:30 or so, and that was Heaven's Bench to Ridge to Vast to Bill Magill (which is an epic trail in Summer), and Heaven's Bench was already quite rutted. My second loop was at 11:40 or so and that same loop was very badly rutted and full of dents where people jumped off to walk up or had fallen off, etc. My third loop was at 12:40 or so and that time I tried the Demo loop, which was worse climbing than Heaven's Bench but better descending. That loop was with the Mukluk.

    Quote Originally Posted by radair View Post
    Conditions at KT's winter fest were about as challenging as you can imagine. A 4" rut going down the middle of the singletrack and the steeper the hills the deeper the ruts. Craters all over the place from people getting pitched off. Not good conditions for testing bikes or dipping a toe into the sport. No wonder the guy sounds a bit jaded.
    Well by the third loop I was getting the hang of riding a fatbike, but still I was exhausted and on the roughed and rutted singletrack I could barely climb on the Muk. I enjoyed it, especially after I knew what to do.
    I've always liked riding on snow with skinny tire bikes but maybe next year I can get a fat tire bike (I hope).

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    Quote Originally Posted by tedo View Post
    Hmmm. You must have went out late in the day. I went out for the 9:30 "Spicy" ride, and returned around 1:30pm. Trails were fine. They were REALLY good before noon, and gradually degraded. A few ruts here and there, but mostly great single-track... It's mountain biking... technical sections are okay.
    ...
    Actually I was there Sunday and it was pretty crappy. Technical riding is great but we found a lot of badly rutted trails so we went elsewhere. Glad to hear it was better for the early folks on Saturday. I had a bunch of friends there for Winterfest and their description was "less than stellar".

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    Quote Originally Posted by radair View Post
    Actually I was there Sunday and it was pretty crappy. Technical riding is great but we found a lot of badly rutted trails so we went elsewhere. Glad to hear it was better for the early folks on Saturday. I had a bunch of friends there for Winterfest and their description was "less than stellar".
    Did you watch that video I posted? How much more "stellar" could you possibly get? Maybe hardpack dirt?

    And, of course it was not good on Sunday. Saturday was the Festival.... You my friend got sloppy seconds (this is sarcasm, not to be taken personal...)
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    These are good considerations when planning for next year. I didn't go, wanted to, but now maybe realize aside from cool festival activities the riding during that time may not be optimal.

    OP... get a fatbike. You want to but your conscience just doesn't know it yet.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bad andy View Post
    These are good considerations when planning for next year. I didn't go, wanted to, but now maybe realize aside from cool festival activities the riding during that time may not be optimal.

    OP... get a fatbike. You want to but your conscience just doesn't know it yet.
    It was a fun event and yeah the more I think about it the more I want a fatbike.

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    For my next trick...I will go into a church and say 'I don't like Jesus, lol'

    Thank you, thank you, I'll be here all week

    Try the veal

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    Quote Originally Posted by CannondaleF9 View Post
    It was a fun event and yeah the more I think about it the more I want a fatbike.
    Are you just saying that to shut us up? Or are you really on your way to the Dark Side?

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    Quote Originally Posted by tedo View Post
    Did you watch that video I posted? How much more "stellar" could you possibly get? Maybe hardpack dirt?...)
    I did watch the vid and it looked great given soft snow conditions. Early bird gets the worm, blah, blah. My friends got there mid-morning and had a great time, but the 'groove' was apparently well worn by the finish. And there was some good trail to be had yesterday, it's just dealing with the deep rut outweighed it.

    I had a plan B in reserve and it turned out to be excellent so no harm done. We need more freeze-thaw for prime conditions; it's been cold for over a month so I should have known.

    On topic, I think improvements in fat bike technology the past couple years are changing the face of mountain biking. Just like snowboards changed the face of alpine skiing equipment, many (if not most) MTBs are going to be sporting 3" and larger tires in the near future. That's my prediction anyway.

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    Quote Originally Posted by HotHead View Post
    Are you just saying that to shut us up? Or are you really on your way to the Dark Side?
    The more comments I read about fatbikes and the more I think about how fun it was to ride them the more I want to get one.
    The bad thing is I just bought a new bike and don't have the money to buy another one now.

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    Looking at your signature though shows the 2015 Raleigh is for sale- freeing up some money for something?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave in Ozark View Post
    Looking at your signature though shows the 2015 Raleigh is for sale- freeing up some money for something?
    Yeah, I need to sell a bike or two to get some more money, and also to free up some space in my garage.

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    Took a friend there too, for his intro to fatbiking.
    Got carried away and the short demo loop ended up on trails, as he put it "above his pay grade" (Ridge).
    Still, an excellent time was had. He too was not quite ready to drink the Kool-aid, but felt it was a great venue and wants to return next year for another taste.
    We were both quite puzzled by the amount of remarks we heard about the "less than optimal" trail conditions. Granted we were probably responsible for some of the postholes and ruts due to our "less than Optimal" riding techniques, but there is sooo much riding there, it seemed like there was still plenty of fast spots. I guess if you are a local there, you can get a bit spoiled by the usually uncrowded conditions. For me though, it was still heavenly, ruts and all. And what about that Zero Gravity at the Publick House? "Aromatic" huh? Definitely going again next year!
    "....All of your so-called friends, I'll take you where the sidewalk ends..." Robbie Robertson, "American Roulette"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hpirx View Post
    We were both quite puzzled by the amount of remarks we heard about the "less than optimal" trail conditions.
    hey, these days if it ain't metrosexual machine built everything perfectly placed with JUST the right FLOW, then the trail conditions aren't "optimal". vermont's doing it's best to create flowy woods sidewalks one trail at a time

    it's true.

    rog

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    I'm a newb to mountain biking (last mountain bike was 20-years ago) and to Fatbiking. I bought a Surly Pug just before Christmas. I love it. I've ridden mud, dirt and now snow. It's a lot of work and not fast, but I get out almost every other day if at all possible in NH. My other bikes are a Spec Sirrus Hybrid that I will likely sell and a Crux that I ride road, trails, and am learning CX on.

    The Pug is just fun. It's not fast but it's a blast everywhere I've ridden it. I am lucky to have some nice areas to ride nearby in Southern New Hampshire and this year they are pretty well groomed from what I hear.

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    Quote Originally Posted by newmarketrog View Post
    hey, these days if it ain't metrosexual machine built everything perfectly placed with JUST the right FLOW, then the trail conditions aren't "optimal". vermont's doing it's best to create flowy woods sidewalks one trail at a time

    it's true.

    rog
    +1 It sounds like IMBA Trail Solutions is taking over fat biking, too. Flow is highly, highly overrated. Give me #EastCoastRocks, roots, logs & tech, any day.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gigantic View Post
    +1 It sounds like IMBA Trail Solutions is taking over fat biking, too. Flow is highly, highly overrated. Give me #EastCoastRocks, roots, logs & tech, any day.
    Hellz yeah! Create your own flow. Makes you a much better rider when the red carpet isn't all laid out for ya.

    Imba trail solutions. Heh. No bueno.

    rog

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    Back to the OP. Those trails at Burke were the best manicured trails I have ever ridden. That would have been a perfect time to get the "feel" for fatbiking. Riding groomed in the woods. Real intermediate.

    I just got back from a ride right now, that was un-groomed. Real, real big difference. Just the tire tracks from other fatties. That was fun and technical just not to dab a foot.

    And Rog... Vermont trails are the best, buddy!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hpirx View Post
    Took a friend there too, for his intro to fatbiking.
    Got carried away and the short demo loop ended up on trails, as he put it "above his pay grade" (Ridge).
    Still, an excellent time was had. He too was not quite ready to drink the Kool-aid, but felt it was a great venue and wants to return next year for another taste.
    We were both quite puzzled by the amount of remarks we heard about the "less than optimal" trail conditions. Granted we were probably responsible for some of the postholes and ruts due to our "less than Optimal" riding techniques, but there is sooo much riding there, it seemed like there was still plenty of fast spots. I guess if you are a local there, you can get a bit spoiled by the usually uncrowded conditions. For me though, it was still heavenly, ruts and all. And what about that Zero Gravity at the Publick House? "Aromatic" huh? Definitely going again next year!
    Exactly!! The trails were super smooth. I think the people saying they were less then optimal, I feel sorry for them... Maybe gravel road riders.

    Can't wait for next year. Met a lot of really cool / positive people!
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    Quote Originally Posted by tedo View Post
    Exactly!! The trails were super smooth. I think the people saying they were less then optimal, I feel sorry for them... Maybe gravel road riders.

    Can't wait for next year. Met a lot of really cool / positive people!
    On Heaven's bench and Ridge especially were quite badly rutted. After a while I got used to those on Heaven's but I still crashed a lot. But yeah if the trail wasn't rutted it was perfect.

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    Have to admit, didn't even read the whole thread, but..........

    OP, if you sell ALL of your other bikes, and buy a good "FatBike", you will ride it more than 5 times a year, and be giggling most of the time.

    These are not your normal bicycles, and all preconceived notions need to go out with the trash.


    Cheers.
    Kevin

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kbbob View Post
    Have to admit, didn't even read the whole thread, but..........

    OP, if you sell ALL of your other bikes, and buy a good "FatBike", you will ride it more than 5 times a year, and be giggling most of the time.

    These are not your normal bicycles, and all preconceived notions need to go out with the trash.


    Cheers.
    Kevin
    I'm not going to sell all of my bikes. Even then I could probably only afford a Mukluk.
    I'm going to wait a couple years, my LBS told me Trek is coming out with something new in a year or so and I want to wait for that before I even seriously think about buying a fatbike.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tedo View Post
    Back to the OP. Those trails at Burke were the best manicured trails I have ever ridden. That would have been a perfect time to get the "feel" for fatbiking. Riding groomed in the woods. Real intermediate.

    I just got back from a ride right now, that was un-groomed. Real, real big difference. Just the tire tracks from other fatties. That was fun and technical just not to dab a foot.

    And Rog... Vermont trails are the best, buddy!
    You just keep on telling yerself that.

    rog

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    less than optimal trail conditions... ha.
    thinking back to when i got my pugsley and needing to tramp out my morning loop in the local woods after a snow dump. and wait for the hikers and dog walkers to pack it in. usually 3-4 days after new snow of 4" or more (wet, the good kind that packs into nice trail) things would be prime. that first winter was awesome. or i was just drinking so much kool aid i was numb to the pushing, falling, walking, stalling...



    fast forward to today, and there are places that groom for you. there were 300 riders at burke? holy shit! thats a crazy amount of riders to join the fatbike ranks in such a short time. boom times, for sure. some folks are spoiled, for sure, to get out to places where they drag a weight around a sled to pack things in before you show up... even if things are 'less than optimal'.



    but, much as i have enjoyed my local trail center (catamount), and i do like riding on groomed, maintained, lovely single track and double track... i still prefer getting off the beaten path - either on dirt or on the fatbike or xc skis.

    the great thing about bikes is that right now there are so many many options. mtb, road, touring, cross, gravel, gravel touring, fat, obese, plus sized.

    life is good.

    i held a 24 pound krampus single speed today.
    that was enlightening.
    made my rohloffed bikepacking krampus feel obese.
    then picked up a beargrease. wow. compared to my white pugs... that was also enlightening.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bmike View Post
    less than optimal trail conditions... ha.
    ...
    I remember too, hiking miles and miles up a hill just cruise through some powder on a steep downhill. Hiking miles and miles next to my bike - I think I hiked more often than pedaled that first year with the endomorph and larry combo. It was still amazingly fun.

    It is really crazy to see how many people are into it this year, many people re-establishing a relationship with cycling. I think that's pretty exciting and cool.

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    oui oui

    rog

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    I ride FS 29er and Surly Ice Cream Truck...both awesome bikes and I love them equally! When I take my skinny tire 29er out I stick to the trail and have a blast....When I go out on my ICT it's a complete different adventure! You can make your own trails and go places where my 29er can't go. Last week I rode my ICT on a trail that I haven't ridden in a while and set 13 new PR's on Strava without even trying...something about 4.8 tires on desert terrain that's just awesome. Happy Trails Fat riders
    SWING YOUR LEG OVER IT AND PEDAL:cool:

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    Quote Originally Posted by rooze View Post
    I don't have any issue with the original post at all. At least the guy has taken the time to ride some different bikes before forming an opinion. Many folks haven't even ridden a fat bike and they write them off.

    I bought my Fattie ONLY as a means to stay active over the winter months, 'cos I hate the idea of spinning indoors. I never expected to actually enjoy it.

    Now I'm riding around like a crazy person loving every minute of it.

    We're all in it for different reasons and it affects us all differently. I love being out at dusk and catching a neat sunset over the Bay of Green Bay, or being miles into the deep woods and stopping to listen to the sound of complete silence. But that's just me.

    Kudos to the OP for taking the time to try the bikes and for sharing his thoughts.

    Ditto,
    Bought the bike solely as an exercise/tinker project. In the mean time I have ridden every weekend since October, snowshoeing and xc skiing the days the snow might be too fresh up here in VT. Never thought I would enjoy the cold so much but this has been the funnest winter of my life weather 22 degrees out or -22degrees. Central Vermont has never been as cold as this year and I have never spent so may hours outside enjoying the freezing!

    OP depending where you are, they groom Millstone pretty regularly in Barre. Nice loop

    My first time fatbiking-img_4172.jpg

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    I think the OP's statement was more of a self denial confession. He doesn't want to spend $2,000 for something he'll ride 5 times a year. Obviously you don't need to spend $2k for a decent fatty and definitely once you have one you'll ride more than 5 times a year. Probably more like 5 times a month or more.

    I'm a slow rider that lives for the technical, challenging aspect of mountain biking. Give me snow, rock gardens, tree crossings and roots, short steep technical climbs and other slow grinding technical things mother nature kindly lays out for us to enjoy. Obviously fat biking plays right in to my type of riding. When our first rider shoed up with one I thought it looked bad ass but figured there was no way I could hang with our group on such a heavy bulky looking ride. I normally ride once a week with a group of guys that ride at least 3-5 days a week. The majority of the group I ride with prefers the rolling singletrack that's less technical. I parked my previous favorite ride which was a Santa Cruz Nomad because I couldn't hang with the other guys on their carbon or titanium 29er HT's. At that point I went to a Specialized Carbon 29er HT so I could keep up again. Fast forward to around Christmas time when the first guy of our group showed up with his fatty. That day one of our guys tried it through a short steep very technical washout area that is very difficult to climb. He rode right up through it with little effort. He also showed up. next week with a fatty. That scenario played out for the next few rides. Someone else would try it and then show up the next week with one. For 3 or 4 weeks I insisted there was no way I'd have one of them because I wouldn't be able to keep up let alone survive pedaling one of those through the mountain. Well sure enough I rode one of the guys Trek Farley 6 in the snow for about a 1 mile and I was hooked!! I immediately started shopping all the models, availability, pricing, tire size capability, etc.. By the next weekend I had a Specialized Fatboy for the ride. This bike has completely reenergized my riding because it is for exactly the style of riding I enjoy. I'm back on a bike that weighs almost as much as my Nomad but I'm keeping up with the group and enjoying the pain as I work my way back in better shape. I've only had the bike for about a month but I'm already planning on selling my Nomad and possibly even my Carbon 29er. I plan on riding this bike in the trim it is (except for the possible addition of a suspension fork) all year round!!

    Fat biking isn't for everyone, but 12 of our 14 regular riders have all made the move and are loving every minute of it plus another guy I know that rides just scrapped his plans for a carbon 27.5 FS and ordered a fatty.

    You're in denial OP.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 03'Darin View Post
    I think the OP's statement was more of a self denial confession. He doesn't want to spend $2,000 for something he'll ride 5 times a year. Obviously you don't need to spend $2k for a decent fatty and definitely once you have one you'll ride more than 5 times a year. Probably more like 5 times a month or more.

    I'm a slow rider that lives for the technical, challenging aspect of mountain biking. Give me snow, rock gardens, tree crossings and roots, short steep technical climbs and other slow grinding technical things mother nature kindly lays out for us to enjoy. Obviously fat biking plays right in to my type of riding. When our first rider shoed up with one I thought it looked bad ass but figured there was no way I could hang with our group on such a heavy bulky looking ride. I normally ride once a week with a group of guys that ride at least 3-5 days a week. The majority of the group I ride with prefers the rolling singletrack that's less technical. I parked my previous favorite ride which was a Santa Cruz Nomad because I couldn't hang with the other guys on their carbon or titanium 29er HT's. At that point I went to a Specialized Carbon 29er HT so I could keep up again. Fast forward to around Christmas time when the first guy of our group showed up with his fatty. That day one of our guys tried it through a short steep very technical washout area that is very difficult to climb. He rode right up through it with little effort. He also showed up. next week with a fatty. That scenario played out for the next few rides. Someone else would try it and then show up the next week with one. For 3 or 4 weeks I insisted there was no way I'd have one of them because I wouldn't be able to keep up let alone survive pedaling one of those through the mountain. Well sure enough I rode one of the guys Trek Farley 6 in the snow for about a 1 mile and I was hooked!! I immediately started shopping all the models, availability, pricing, tire size capability, etc.. By the next weekend I had a Specialized Fatboy for the ride. This bike has completely reenergized my riding because it is for exactly the style of riding I enjoy. I'm back on a bike that weighs almost as much as my Nomad but I'm keeping up with the group and enjoying the pain as I work my way back in better shape. I've only had the bike for about a month but I'm already planning on selling my Nomad and possibly even my Carbon 29er. I plan on riding this bike in the trim it is (except for the possible addition of a suspension fork) all year round!!

    Fat biking isn't for everyone, but 12 of our 14 regular riders have all made the move and are loving every minute of it plus another guy I know that rides just scrapped his plans for a carbon 27.5 FS and ordered a fatty.

    You're in denial OP.
    The Muk I can get for $1600 from my LBS, but I mean I just spend $1k on a Crossrip so although I want a fattie I can't afford one.
    But yeah those fatties climb insanely well, that's probably the best thing about them.
    I also have my eye on a Stache 7 so... I want to wait a while before I get a fattie.
    I don't want to think too much about buying another new bike yet or I'll drive myself crazy, maybe I just need to ride my new bike first.

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    +2 It is happening here in Maryland.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gigantic View Post
    +1 It sounds like IMBA Trail Solutions is taking over fat biking, too. Flow is highly, highly overrated. Give me #EastCoastRocks, roots, logs & tech, any day.
    Lucky neighbor of Maryland's Patapsco Valley State Park, 39.23,-76.76 Flickr

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    Quote Originally Posted by shoo View Post
    +2 It is happening here in Maryland.
    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! fvcking bench cut whoop de do bermed up guide stone flow cRap.

    travesty.

    rog

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    Quote Originally Posted by CannondaleF9 View Post
    The Muk I can get for $1600 from my LBS, but I mean I just spend $1k on a Crossrip so although I want a fattie I can't afford one.
    But yeah those fatties climb insanely well, that's probably the best thing about them.
    I also have my eye on a Stache 7 so... I want to wait a while before I get a fattie.
    I don't want to think too much about buying another new bike yet or I'll drive myself crazy, maybe I just need to ride my new bike first.
    Don't buy a fatty just because everyone else is buying them. I thought they looked cool as hell when some of our guys started showing up with them but thought there was no way I was going to buy one. The bikes looked incredibly heavy and I figured there was no way I could pedal one through the mountain with the weight. Well I saw all the fun the other guys were having and then made the mistake of riding one in the conditions I enjoy riding and I was hooked. So far I've loved every minute of it.

  72. #72
    bigger than you.
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    Quote Originally Posted by shoo View Post
    +2 It is happening here in Maryland.
    Quote Originally Posted by newmarketrog View Post
    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! fvcking bench cut whoop de do bermed up guide stone flow cRap.

    travesty.

    rog
    Here in Philly, what was once our crown jewel, Wissahickon, a 15-20 mile trail system with nearly 4k feet of elevation changes, has gone from twisty, rocky, rooty tech, to a multi-use system that is 3-8 feet wide through most of the system. Part of this is due to lazy riders who cut the trail in difficult sections and part due to outside accessibility pressure.

    Fortunately, we have Belmont, another, smaller system that retains an old-school vibe. It's narrow, twisty and difficult to ride, in spite of its lack of elevation. Most beginner and intermediate riders with ride there once and not come back. 2 of the 3 friends that I brought to ride there, who were accustomed to flow, wouldn't speak to me for a few hours after we rode there. It's got a plethora of logs, roots, rocks and obstacles that are deliberately placed to make the ride a challenge. There are lots of places where, if you fall, you will get hurt. The local trail wizards are uncompromising and by a fantastic stroke of luck, the park's land manager lets them do pretty much whatever they want. It just might be my all-time favorite trail.

  73. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gigantic View Post
    Here in Philly, what was once our crown jewel, Wissahickon, a 15-20 mile trail system with nearly 4k feet of elevation changes, has gone from twisty, rocky, rooty tech, to a multi-use system that is 3-8 feet wide through most of the system. Part of this is due to lazy riders who cut the trail in difficult sections and part due to outside accessibility pressure.

    Fortunately, we have Belmont, another, smaller system that retains an old-school vibe. It's narrow, twisty and difficult to ride, in spite of its lack of elevation. Most beginner and intermediate riders with ride there once and not come back. 2 of the 3 friends that I brought to ride there, who were accustomed to flow, wouldn't speak to me for a few hours after we rode there. It's got a plethora of logs, roots, rocks and obstacles that are deliberately placed to make the ride a challenge. There are lots of places where, if you fall, you will get hurt. The local trail wizards are uncompromising and by a fantastic stroke of luck, the park's land manager lets them do pretty much whatever they want. It just might be my all-time favorite trail.
    holy $hit yer from pa? best people in the world come from pa and the riding is some of the best anywhere. most of my riding has been split between laurel, 7 springs/top of the world, blue knob, pittsburg, and west by god virginny. brilliant country for riding. true knobby-ness

    it's sooooooooo not kingdom trails and other machine built $hit riding.

    rog

  74. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gigantic View Post
    Here in Philly, what was once our crown jewel, Wissahickon, a 15-20 mile trail system with nearly 4k feet of elevation changes, has gone from twisty, rocky, rooty tech, to a multi-use system that is 3-8 feet wide through most of the system. Part of this is due to lazy riders who cut the trail in difficult sections and part due to outside accessibility pressure.

    Fortunately, we have Belmont, another, smaller system that retains an old-school vibe. It's narrow, twisty and difficult to ride, in spite of its lack of elevation. Most beginner and intermediate riders with ride there once and not come back. 2 of the 3 friends that I brought to ride there, who were accustomed to flow, wouldn't speak to me for a few hours after we rode there. It's got a plethora of logs, roots, rocks and obstacles that are deliberately placed to make the ride a challenge. There are lots of places where, if you fall, you will get hurt. The local trail wizards are uncompromising and by a fantastic stroke of luck, the park's land manager lets them do pretty much whatever they want. It just might be my all-time favorite trail.
    I heard that about Wissahickon. Last rode there in the 90's when they shut down the orange trail to bikes. That was my favorite trail ever. There are other places to go.

    I have a feeling the OP will wind up on a fat bike sooner than he thinks. Resistance is futile.

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