October 16, 2021


Automotive maniacs

Excess fat tire bikes a scorching item for moderate wintertime

5 min read

Till this wintertime, when her favourite ski trails lacked the snow depth required by way of all of December and nicely into January.

To her great fortune, the prolonged-time cross-country ski fanatic has located a new way to knowledge the joy of currently being exterior in winter season and the thrill of whizzing down hills by way of a wild landscape: Fats tire biking.

“Just beloved it,” mentioned Hauser, 60, of Raymond. She uncovered fats tire biking at Prairie Woods Environmental Finding out Center in close proximity to Spicer in Kandiyohi County. It’s the place a fleet of 23 unwanted fat tire bikes is now out there for rental, and 4.5 miles of recently made path are waiting.

“I assumed: ‘Why have not I carried out this before?” mentioned Kathy Hartley, who also gave this sport her initially try in December on the off-road bike path at Prairie Woods.

Hartley is an avid bicyclist. She stopped counting previous summer season immediately after she set around 2,000 miles on her road bicycle.

But until eventually December, she had in no way hopped atop a body fat tire bike. She appreciated her trial run so considerably that she went out and bought her own extra fat tire bike. Her dwelling is on the north shore of Lake Florida. She now pedals more than the frozen lake’s east shoreline and appropriate to the Prairie Woods path.

“It does give you a workout,” reported Hartley of body fat tire biking. It’s also a massive reason why Hartley and Hauser delight in this sport. Both of those take pleasure in the value of being energetic.

Each mentioned they dressed in layers for their rides, just like they do for cross country skiing. It is a get the job done out that will keep you heat, they pointed out. The bikes are uncomplicated to manage about the snow, they additional.

Kathy Hartley has long been an avid bicyclists, but didn't discover fat tire bikes until this winter when she gave the new trail at the Prairie Woods Environmental Learning Center a try on one of the Center's rental bikes. She enjoyed it so much she went out and bought her own fat tire bike.
Submitted photo.

Kathy Hartley has extended been an avid bicyclists, but failed to uncover unwanted fat tire bikes until this winter season when she gave the new trail at the Prairie Woods Environmental Learning Middle a try out on just one of the Center’s rental bikes. She savored it so much she went out and purchased her own unwanted fat tire bicycle.
Submitted photo.

Nicholas Carman, a writer with Experience Cycling, traces the background of extra fat tire bikes to the 1970s and 1980s when bicyclists in California and Colorado began tinkering with all-terrain bicycles. He credits the start of the modern fats tire period to Surly Pugsley and his introduction in 2005 of the initially mass developed fats tire bicycle, the purple-coloured Pugsley.

The large-tire bikes are produced for Minnesota winters. Although they gain from possessing a layer of packed snow, it does not take a great deal.

Minnesota is now celebrated for its body fat tire destinations. The Cuyuna Country State Recreation Location near Ironton is the finest known, but there are also pretty preferred trails all over the place from the Split Rock Lighthouse State Park along the North Shore to the Richard Dorer Point out Forest near Winona.

The Cuyuna State Point out Recreation Location has been viewing steady growth in extra fat tire bicycling, but hardly ever as significantly as this year, according to Nicholis Statz, its supervisor. A competitive mountain biker for about 20 a long time, he mentioned he has hardly ever witnessed the inflow of new off-street riders like this year.

Statz explained the newcomers to fats tire bikes appear in all ages. There are more youth trying out the activity than he’s at any time found. He’s also observing a lot more individuals in their afterwards decades taking it up. Numerous have been active runners, and take pleasure in the opportunity to remain lively and outdoors with out the influence on their bodies, he stated.

Kory Klebe, environmental education director, rides on a fat tire bicycle at the bike trailhead Tuesday afternoon at Prairie Woods Environmental Learning Center in Spicer.

Erica Dischino / West Central Tribune

Kory Klebe, environmental training director, rides on a fats tire bicycle at the bike trailhead Tuesday afternoon at Prairie Woods Environmental Mastering Heart in Spicer.

Erica Dischino / West Central Tribune

Cuyuna Place opened in 1993 as a state recreation place and has been establishing its path technique at any time considering the fact that.

Nonetheless there keep on being large parts of the state wherever there are number of unwanted fat tire bicycle trails to be located. Therefore, the activity is still to be found out by several winter enthusiasts.

Rick Norsten, owner of Rick’s Biking and Sport Middle, Willmar, explained there is unquestionably growing interest in extra fat tire bicycles in west central Minnesota. “There would be a great deal far more curiosity if there were being trails,” he claimed.

Norsten mentioned an additional challenge right now is availability. Bicycles of all types and the components for them have been in shorter provide at any time due to the fact the start off of the pandemic, he pointed out. By the identical token, the pandemic has served deliver a surge in curiosity in bicycling and out of doors actions. It’s the most that Norsten has seen in his 45 a long time in the business, which includes the previous 37 decades as the owner of the downtown Willmar store.

Prairie Woods Environmental Finding out Middle is hoping its new off-highway path will help introduce much more men and women to bicycling and the outdoors. Kory Klebe, environmental schooling director at Prairie Woods, explained he believes demand from customers for the rental body fat tire bikes will carry on to grow as people today learn the sport and understand about their availability at the Centre.

Fat tire bicycles are available for rent at Prairie Woods Environmental Learning Center in Spicer. The bikes can be ridden through various terrains including snow.

Erica Dischino / West Central Tribune

Extra fat tire bicycles are accessible for hire at Prairie Woods Environmental Finding out Heart in Spicer. The bikes can be ridden through several terrains which includes snow.

Erica Dischino / West Central Tribune

The Prairie Woods off-bicycle trail is designed for novice and knowledgeable bicyclists alike. It consists of loops with technical challenges for qualified riders.

Klebe mentioned Prairie Woods has observed extra persons finding outside this wintertime. Many are on foot mainly because the snow problems have limited prospects for cross place snowboarding and snowshoeing. He likes to encourage the body fat tire bikes as very well as the kick sleds available there as new options for folks to love Minnesota’s wintertime period.

“With the pandemic and every thing, having out and having new air and exercise is more critical than at any time,” reported Klebe. “Instead of getting that cabin fever and complaining about a Minnesota winter season, get out and get pleasure from it,” he said.

Hauser is undertaking particularly that. Following her to start with extra fat tire trip on the path, Hauser said she invited 3 mates together to introduce it to them the following weekend. “They beloved it,” she claimed.

They rode via open up prairie and woodlands, all of it glazed in rime frost. “Invigorating,” she said of the whole working experience. She claimed she just can’t wait to get back on the trail.

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