Page 2 of 2 Previous

Continued: Fat bikes on the rise in metro parks

  • Article by: MATT MCKINNEY , Star Tribune
  • Last update: February 7, 2014 - 10:49 AM

Soon I realized I didn’t have the skill to ride the bike in these conditions, even with a lifetime of bike riding behind me. Other riders out that day swiftly navigated the trails I struggled on. It was just the challenge of it that made me wonder: What have I been missing?

The trail improved somewhat, and so did I, and I managed to wind through a loop’s worth of wintry woods before arriving back at the parking lot. I returned my friend’s bike with the idea I’d go out again, once it got colder.

A week later, I borrowed a Pugsley made by Surly Bikes, another brand from QBP. It’s one of the original fat tire bikes, introduced in 2004 as the first mass-produced fat tire frame, and likely the reason fat biking has taken off. On a brutally cold January day, the groomed trail at Theodore Wirth Park in Minneapolis was more ridable. ­Slicing through the trees as cross-country skiers enjoyed their own trail nearby, the Pugsley rode the snowshoe-packed trail as if it were a dirt path in the summer. A few times the trail emerged from the woods and crossed in front of skiers, a sensation I started to enjoy as the summer world of biking and the winter world of ­skiing collided.

Later that day, with the world of fat biking opening up to me, I found myself riding down the frozen waters of Minnehaha Creek. For whatever reason, there wasn’t much snow on the creek and dozens of fat bike riders before me had left tire marks up and down the route. The Pugsley rolled easily along the creek’s meandering path, under bridges festooned with icicles and past snow-covered back yards. After an hour of traveling west, I turned and pedaled east, eventually arriving at Lake Hiawatha. The snow here was deeper and it took effort and balance to push through, but something about riding a bike through the snow across a frozen lake made me laugh. Smidt, the MORC president, had warned me: People sometimes get a big grin riding on fat tires.

Near the middle of the lake I stepped off the bike and took in the view. Ice crystals moved in shimmering rivers across the snow. Wind filled my ears with a low howl. And the Pugsley, riderless but still upright with its fist-width tires locked in inches of snow, pointed toward the shore.

It looked perfectly at home.

Matt McKinney • 612-217-1747









  • related content

  • Winter camping with non-Minnesotans

    Thursday February 6, 2014

    A Minnesota outdoorsman introduces two outsiders to the wonders of winter camping.

  • Singing cardinals are a sign of spring

    Thursday February 6, 2014

    A common bird of the southern and eastern United States, the northern cardinal is expanding its range northward. They’re permanent...

  • Bikers brought their fat tire bikes to the trails at Murphy-Hanrehan Park Reserve.

  • Buzzy LaMere, of Minneapolis, rode his fat bike on the trails at Murphy-Hanrehan Park Reserve.

  • Fat bike riders head for the groomed trails at Murphy-Hanrehan Park Reserve.

  • Buzzy LaMere rode his fat bike on the trails at the Murphy-Hanrehan Park Reserve.

  • Buzzy LaMere, of Minneapolis, took a spin on his fat bike at Murphy-Hanrehan Park Reserve last month.

  • Fat tire bikers head for the trails at Murphy-Hanrehan Park Reserve.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

Click here to send us your hunting or fishing photos – and to see what others are showing off from around the region.

ADVERTISEMENT

Baltimore 2 FINAL
Detroit 15
NY Yankees 5 FINAL
Philadelphia 5
Northeastern 1 FINAL
Boston 2
Miami-Fla 1 FINAL
Miami 7
Pittsburgh 8 FINAL
Toronto 7
San Francisco 4 FINAL
Oakland 9
Cleveland 0 FINAL
Cincinnati 10
Boston College 0 FINAL
Boston 1
Arizona State 0 FINAL
Arizona 4
Boston 79 FINAL
Cleveland 110
LA Lakers 103 FINAL
Charlotte 104
Sacramento 124 FINAL
New York 86
Houston 96 FINAL
Atlanta 104
Utah 93 FINAL
Memphis 82
Washington 92 FINAL
Chicago 97
Milwaukee 95 FINAL
Denver 106
Nashville 1 FINAL
New Jersey 3
Calgary 3 FINAL(OT)
Philadelphia 2
Washington 5 FINAL
Columbus 3
Buffalo 0 FINAL
Tampa Bay 3
Toronto 3 FINAL
Florida 2
Ottawa 2 FINAL(SO)
Minnesota 3
NY Islanders 2 FINAL(OT)
Dallas 3
Anaheim 4 FINAL
Arizona 1
Los Angeles 5 FINAL
Edmonton 2
San Jose 6 FINAL
Vancouver 2
Ole Miss 82 FINAL
Alabama 74
Eastern Mich 67 FINAL
Ball State 60
Kent State 81 FINAL
Bowling Green 80
Ohio 66 FINAL
Buffalo 93
Georgetown 60 FINAL
Butler 54
Toledo 77 FINAL
Central Mich 85
Rhode Island 59 FINAL
Dayton 75
Youngstown St 67 FINAL
Detroit 77
North Carolina 81 FINAL
Georgia Tech 49
Loyola-Maryland 45 FINAL
Holy Cross 62
Iowa 77 FINAL
Indiana 63
Akron 63 FINAL
Miami-Ohio 70
Army 52 FINAL
Navy 56
Maryland 60 FINAL
Rutgers 50
Kennesaw St 54 FINAL
USC Upstate 90
Jacksonville 63 FINAL
Fla Gulf Coast 81
Lipscomb 76 FINAL
Northern Ky 73
Stetson 67 FINAL
North Florida 81
Wright State 57 FINAL
Ill-Chicago 60
Western Mich 63 FINAL
Northern Ill 65
Nebraska Omaha 80 FINAL
North Dakota 78
Houston Baptist 71 FINAL
Abilene Christian 83
NC State 66 FINAL
Clemson 61
Texas A&M 62 FINAL
Florida 66
Kentucky 72 FINAL
Georgia 64
West Virginia 69 FINAL
Kansas 76
Auburn 61 FINAL
Missouri 63
Michigan 78 FINAL
Northwestern 82
Villanova 76 FINAL
Creighton 72
Longwood 55 FINAL
Gardner-Webb 63
Charleston Southern 39 FINAL
Presbyterian 47
Coastal Carolina 54 FINAL
UNC-Asheville 68
NJIT 51 FINAL
UMass Lowell 60
West Virginia 55 FINAL
Kansas State 59
TCU 45 FINAL
Texas 79
Fresno State 61 FINAL
Air Force 41
San Jose St 76 FINAL
Boise State 91
Nevada 61 FINAL
Colorado State 68
UNLV 61 FINAL
San Diego State 76
Wyoming 61 FINAL
Utah State 57
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Should the lake where the albino muskie was caught remain a mystery?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close