Posts Tagged ‘snowbiking’

When I first saw a fat bike, I thought wtf? A year later I rode one in a parking lot and thought about the possibilities. Then I bought one and haven’t picked up my skate skis since. Well, I have moved then around a bit, but that doesn’t count. I rode that bike though the winter and decided to race it in my first multi-day bike race, the 300 mile AZT300. Then I rode my Blacksheep custom Singlespeed fatbike in every race that year. I was addicted. After a fusion of 2 Cervical disks, I decided it would be best to leave the rigid SS community. Summers are spent on one of my full suspension bikes and winters are reserved for my fat bike. It’s a lonely time when the ground is still dry and the temps are cold. I really prefer the ground to be covered in snow before I put the fat tires out. Plus it just feels weird now. I’m blessed to have, IMO, one of the best fat biking areas around at the Pole Mountain / Happy Jack trail system.

I think often about how Fat Biking has changed how I look at the Wyoming winters. I used to sit on an indoor trainer, now I hit the trails as much as possible.

It’s strange now that I have 2 ‘I dislike to ride’ seasons. One after October-ish and another when the temps warm and the snow is soft.

For now, I’m happy to be riding on cold snow. I’ll hit the dirt north of Tucson next month at 24HOP (not racing this year) but will be back on snow again the next week.

Indoor training with Zwift may or may not be needed depending on trail conditions before racing in May. I can only hope the snow continues.


I hate the ‘in between’ seasons.  Either it’s cold but not cold enough for substantial snow accumulation or it’s starting to warm but hasn’t fully melted away the white stuff to reveal the dirt below.  When I’m in ‘THE’ season, it’s like magic all day (and sometimes the night) long.  It’s the real winter season and my local trails are fully groomed snow covered singletrack fun.  All summer long I look forward to this time of year.  It takes me a few weeks to get into the new routine. Pulling out the winter clothes, regularly charging batteries for all the night rides, fatbike in order, dog collar batteries replaced, etc. By January I’ve gotten it all down and I’m usually cruising 4 days a week. 

There is no doubt that the people who ride or talk with me while I’m on the multipurpose trail system that I am in cloud 9 while out there. The beauty of snow covered trees and headlight lit trails at night light up my soul. I’m so grateful for the addition of the motorized trail maintenance we now have.  Hopefully my snowshoes will never be used again.

The past few years snowbiking has exclusively been my training leading up to 24 Hours in The Old Pueblo.  Training at +8000′ with approximately 150′ gained per mile rode plus the additional resistance that 5″ tires give offer a great advantage.  I can usually gage myself by how many Strava trophies I’m acquiring. But as it is when you age, those  virtual awards  become harder to beat. So constantly getting a 2nd or 3rd best time (along with any riding partner saying that there must be a motor in my bike) is usually a good indicator of fitness. 

One more month before I get some sun in the desert but till then I’m going to soak up as much snow as I can.

It’s been an interesting month December.  In Wyoming I’ve always dreaded the “off season”.  Hellacious wind, bitter cold, no desire to ride, early sunsets… you get the point.  But this time is different. 2 important things happened to me.  First, I “discovered” winter riding on trails a 25 min drive away.  They’ve always been there, I just never thought of riding there in the winter.  Second, I got news that Hammer Nutrition has selected me for athlete sponsorship for 2014. My training log (thanks Strava) shows that I am riding 4 days a week at an average of nearly 3 hours each.  This number is steadily going up.  Going back a couple years, I have never logged this much time in December.  Motivation of racing starting in 3 weeks on snow and less than 2 months til 24 Hours in the Old Pueblo probably has something to do with it.  Of course the fun trails isn’t everything (it’s a big part of it though), there is also the new gear.  Wolvhammer boots, Fat Carbon race wheels, lights, and proper winter dressing (thanks Salsa/JayP). Then the added benefit of sponsorship by a company whose products have turned my endurance training and racing around the last few years, Hammer Nutrition.  I can’t say enough good things about them and their products, I was literally a walking Hammer rep without getting paid.  Well I’m not technically getting paid, but they are making it easier financially on my supplement expenses.  If whoever reads this blog wants some advice, I can let you in on my fueling program for long races. Just comment.

Suffice it to say, I now want winter to last forever….Well until late spring, I’d like the Colorado mountains dry during the Colorado Trail Race.

May all your rides be filled with joy and new experiences,