Patrick Strahm, Biel, Bern, Switzerland

Big Fat Day

after lots of heavy climbing in the legs, they lacked the freshness and the necessary power to move my single-speed up the mountains. we’re in late september, leaves are falling and a particular trail was calling.

a trail that in all honesty is best ridden fat. so, i left the house on my blue beast with a long, single-track heavy loop in mind. as it turns out that trail, a climb just outside of orvin, has gotten a much looser surface. it appears that june’s rain washed it out and new gravel was applied in patches. in the years before, i managed to climb it on my single-speed. in the condition the trail is now, i wouldn’t be able to get the necessary traction on the ground while climbing out of the saddle. in fact, in the condition the trail is now, a geared bike with regular 2.4" tires wouldn’t be all that enjoyable.

having logged the last ride on my big boy in march, i have almost forgotten how much fun this bike is. it doesn’t just climb like a mountain goat meets spiderman, it rails downhill like nothing else. the crest trail east of the chasseral has a few tricky sections and the huge tires had me pick lines that i’d never phantom to attempt on my regular tired 29er. it was mind-blowing how easy those technical sections became.

as a cyclist who suffers from “n+1”, a next bike is always on the radar screen. now that the whole industry is putting all their bets on 27.5+, that wheel size has naturally been one to contemplate. but, 3 inches are only 0.6 inches wider than my 29er tires. i sort of have the feeling that it won’t make a large enough impact as far as trail experience and won’t be nowhere near the capabilities of 4 and 5 inch tires. a recent shootout between b+ and real fat by came to the same conclusion. another fat fall ride is in planning, hopefully the weather plays along.

a reblog from time to dust off the fatty.

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Big Fat Day
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Big Fat Day
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Pulled out the fat bike for a trail-heavy ride. Damn, is this a sweet bike. While I'm considering building a new, totally snow-optimized fat-bike, my current FortyFour is going to stay with me. As a trail bike it kicks some butt. I don't think I'm going to bother with 27.5+. It's just not nearly enough rubber in comparison to 4.0-4.8" tires. What struck me most today was how does huge tires let me pick lines that I'd never consider on regular 2.4" tires. Huge grin on my face all the way.
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Patrick Strahm, Biel, Bern, Switzerland