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Just Like Peddling a Bulldozer – Fat Bike Riding in the Snow

Monday, November 17, 2014

Part 1: No Offseason

Most of my riding buddies have put away their bikes and are doing offseason conditioning. You know, boring stuff like, elliptical trainers, treadmills and indoor cycling. I have a good indoor cycling trainer and an elliptical machine.

I only use my boring indoor trainers when there is no alternative. In the Winter I prefer to snowshoe, cross-country ski, downhill ski, and most of all, ride my 9:Zero:7 fat bike.

Here is my fat bike all tuned-up and ready to go. The tires are 5" wide. Tire pressure ranges from 2 psi to 30 psi. At 2 psi these tires have a monster footprint and can handle very deep snow. I typically run 5 to 7 psi, which provides plenty of traction.

Part 2: Heat Wave

The temperature got up to sweltering 10 degrees. So I bundled-up, grabbed my 9:Zero:7 and went for a ride in my neighborhood.

My wife bought this thermometer that shows a hummingbird and some flowers. Right now, flowers and hummingbirds are not due back in these Colorado mountains for 7 months.

Part 3: It's a Beautiful Day In the Neighborhood

Here is a good shot of the road conditions in my neighborhood. We only got about 9 inches of snow.

While I was riding on this pleasant little stretch of road, I got a call from my daughter in Washington State. Her car was making a funny noise and she was 100 miles from her apartment. Her car was also vibrating going down the road. She is going to graduate school at University of Washington . So I stood in the snow and tried to diagnose a car that was 1,000 miles away. Fortunately, she got home alright.

Here is my 9:Zero:7 waiting patiently for me to get off the phone. Even on a cloudy day, the Orange powder coat finish on the 9:Zero:7 glows.

Part 3: Fast Bulldozer

Riding my fat bike is a really good workout. However, the 9:Zero:7 is a snow racing bike and moves remarkably quickly. My top speed on this ride was 26.2 mph. Average speed was a bit over 10 mph. However, the effort to make this bike go that fast in snow is intense.

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    9zero7 Nice. I was looking at one of those. You're from CO. Have you ridden out in Fruita then? I love it there.

    I'm headed back to Buffalo to get my Fatbike today! Can't wait to get out and ride it!
    1605 days ago
    How cool! Love the bike and way to be a winter warrior. So impressive.
    1610 days ago
  • GHK1962
    Ok ... so apparently when I mentioned that you were my crazy mountain bike buddy because of that full body armor thing ... I was wrong. You are my crazy mountain bike buddy because WHO RIDES IN THAT?!?!?

    And 26+ mph? In snow???? I can't get that speed on a flat without freakin snow!!!

    You, Bruce, are the mountain biking king.

    Though that is a pretty awesome looking machine ... and the roads do look every bit a picture postcard.
    1611 days ago
    Glad your daughter got home okay. You are definitely so much braver than me for being out in that snow and especially on a bike! I get cold just reading this LOL!
    1613 days ago
    It's a good thing you don't mind snow! I can't do it. I can't handle the cold anymore. I hope you have a great fun winter of riding! Be safe!
    1613 days ago
    Sounds like one cool ride! lol
    1613 days ago
    I have 2 friends here in Hillsboro NH who have snow tires for their bikes and also continue riding through most of the winter.
    Go guy GO!
    1613 days ago
    You are one serious biker. I've never seen a fat bike, only read of them. That is SO COOL! Thanks for posting pics. When I was a lot younger I'd ride in anything but not now. I like being warm and dry.
    1613 days ago
    Wow! That looks like a blast - too cold for me! And I am not that gutsy!
    That does have to be an amazing workout!
    Love the pics.
    1613 days ago
    Love the Fatbike... Been seeing a few of them around lately and always wonder how they ride...
    1613 days ago
    The first thought through my head is "You 're crazy!!!" I'm sitting in my office at 70 degrees shivering....I am so glad to live in SO CAL because I can't stand treadmills or indoor bikes.

    I'm so impressed with you! Do you think you can put a plow on the front of that thing and get exercise while clearing snow? LOL!



    1613 days ago
    you are a tougher soul than I

    the good news is that it looks like you have the roads to yourself
    1613 days ago
    'Amazing' comes to mind. Great pictures and bike. emoticon Snow is not my cup of tea but happy you can enjoy it with such zest. Gotta love your spirit! I used to ski Mt. Baker in Wa. State many moons ago but never got off of "peanut hill" lol. Your daughter is going to a great school! Hope her car is fixed and reliable now.

    PS think I've seen the fat tire bikes on the beach or are they the same type?

    1613 days ago

    Comment edited on: 11/17/2014 11:35:12 AM
    I saw someone riding a bike with these big fat tires yesterday. He was bouncing down the road. It looked hard. Be very careful in the snow and ice.
    1613 days ago
    You have now eliminated all doubt that you are a wild and crazy guy. I've cross country skied quite a bit, but just started snowshoeing. I like it a lot. My daughter may move to CO.
    1613 days ago
    I really love your orange bike! I had absolutely no idea there were bikes designed for snow-riding. I'm guessing one of these costs a pretty penny (I'll google and spare you having to respond). Can you ride around on this bike in the summer?

    I am glad your daughter made it home safe. I hope she has an emergency kit in her car.

    The view from your balcony (behind the thermometer) is so beautiful! Enjoy this good life.
    1614 days ago
    1614 days ago
    Wow! Enjoy but be careful in the snow!
    1614 days ago
  • HILLSLUG98239
    I'm with you on the dread of trainers. While I'm giving up commuting until the weather warms, I love riding my mountain bike at a local natural area when there's snow on the ground.

    I just wish exercise calories-burned calculators recognized that sometimes, 3 mph is an acceptable average speed!
    1614 days ago
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