An Alternate Summit County Snow Sport: Winter Biking
Posted by: admin February 19th, 2016
Because Summit County is typically known for its world-class ski resorts and one of the longest ski seasons in North America, you would naturally assume that its biking season would be one of the shortest. Well, you would be wrong. Summit County locals and visitors alike bike year-round through sleet, hail, rain and even snow. Why? Well, we have some of the best mountain biking terrain in the country, even during the winter months, and the cycling culture in Summit County is strong.
While we love our powder days more than anything, this environmentally friendly method of transportation is a great way to get to work, ease traffic and congestion, and eliminate all those parking woes. Additionally, during the winter months you will find riders training for summer bike races, trying to stay in shape, and easing the stresses and burdens of every day life. A biker’s life in Summit County doesn’t stop just because the snow is falling. But, aside from these practicalities, there is still those that want to trail ride for fun just like they would do during the summer. Enter the Fat Bikes.
Even in mid-winter, you will find biking enthusiasts hitting the trails of Summit County on their Fat Bikes. These off-road bicycles with over-sized tires are designed specifically for winter terrain and conditions with a design that is tailored for low ground pressure, allowing for riding on soft, unstable topography (such as snow). There is no longer and end to mountain biking season, but there are some practices to follow for a safe ride.
With Fat Bikes, its all about trail compaction. So, when you don’t have the luxury of riding on dirt, you will want to find high traffic, packed trails that snowshoers and cross country skiers visit regularly. These other winter enthusiasts will end up being your best friends by packing down the snow for you. You will also want to try various tire pressures until you find the right one for you, take the time to dial in your bike so it handles well in the challenging conditions, and keep your pedal strokes as smooth as possible to help keep your traction.
Does this sound like fun? Winter biking on Fat Bikes is a wonderful alternate snow sport that is gaining traction (pardon the pun) all over Summit County and other places that have long winter seasons. If you have your own Fat Bike, enjoy unlimited access to all the trails we have to offer. If you need to rent a bike, there are multiple bike shops across the county that can help you out. Just remember to be adequately prepared for your winter ride by having extra layers, taking plenty of water with you, wearing sunscreen, including a basic repair kit, and starting your trip out early so you don’t get stuck in the dark on those early winter days.
*Photos courtesy of Best of Breckenridge.