Fat-Bike Luge Run

“Luge Run.”  That’s all I could think of as I tried my best to keep the fatties centered on the frozen ice trough of a path I created riding a few days ago.  Earlier in the week, I had no intention of making this luge run, but temps that day hovered around 40, and the inch or so of new snow packed down like a sponge and turned to pure ice with the overnight freeze.

  First thought this day was yea!  I can pedal effortlessly down those tracks and not battle to slog through thick snow again.  Contrary to what some may think, those 3.5″ fat tires don’t always stick to ice, and I was quickly reminded of that with a hard landing on the ground. It took total concentration to ride within the confines of ice and snow gutter and keep the rubber side down. Thankfully there were not many hills to test my nerve skiddering down or climbing.

These melty days have been more common than not this “winter,” and I suspect these conditions will be the rule as we creep out of February into spring.  Soon, the trails and forest roads will be total slop, and the window of riding opportunity will only be open a few hours in the morning when things are still frozen.  With the new fat-bike under me opening a lot of riding prospects, I hope to keep riding into the spring, like I have all winter and just enjoying the turning of the pedals.

How have your trail riding experiences this winter compared to last?

About Steve Meurett, On-TheEdge

Photographer, skinny skier, fat tire rider, teacher, dirt digger, hunter and coach. Steve lives in the shadow of Chatty Belle and shares his thoughts on biking with us from time to time. To read more and see more of his great photography from central Wisconsin, check out Steve's blog On The Edge

2 thoughts on “Fat-Bike Luge Run

  1. Thanks for the nice write-up from the Levis Mound trails Steve. My Schlick Northpaw has definitely allowed me to get out more this winter than I have in previous winters with my regular mtb. I have noticed my Nate’s are better on icy conditions than the Endomorphs, no matter what pressure I run. That said a regular mtb with studded tires is a fearsome steed for riding icy trails.

    And even when the sun and warmer-than-winter temps turn the trails slushy with a top layer of slippery mud over frozen ground, I feel like the fat tires do very little damage to the trails. On a skinny-tired mtb I wouldn’t want to ride in those conditions. So yeah, the fat bike has definitely put me on the trails more this winter.

  2. Agreed-the Endos slip pretty easy. As far as trail damage-we usually don’t allow bike on groomed ski trails in the winter, but Levis Mound is more or less closed-no snow on a lot and besides, I was trail inspecting. With new snow this week (hopefully) We’ll re-groom and bikes will stay on single track only.

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