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Industry Ticker: First-ever Fat Bike Festival coming to Mt. Hood this Friday

Posted by on February 8th, 2016 at 2:31 pm

Flyer for the event.

In case you hadn’t realized it yet fat bikes are not just a passing fad. Their popularity has spread all over the country, and the Portland region — with its proximity to lots of sand and snow — is well-poised to be a hotbed (if it isn’t already).

Confirming the trend locally is a new event at Mt. Hood Meadows that just popped into my inbox: a Fat Bike Festival.

Check out the press release for more info:

Fat Bike Festival Features FREE Demos – Friday February 12 at Mt. Hood Meadows

MT. HOOD, OR (Immediate Release) – Fat bikes are all the rage and in a state like Oregon they should be! These modified mountain bikes sport tires that are twice as wide to provide traction on otherwise unrideable surfaces – like SNOW! They also make beach riding not only possible but fun.

Bike enthusiasts are looking at adding a fat bike to their arsenal, but recreational bike riders should consider making the fat bike their ride of choice. They’re versatile and a lot of fun!

Avid biker and Meadows Director of Mountain Operations Tom Scully says Fat Bikes make a great family activity. “They are easy to ride and the increased traction allows all abilities to enjoy dirt, snow, sand, mud and pavement. They are not at all limiting for a family that wants to ride in all kinds of different places and conditions. We’ll have a single track course and a great place to try out Fat Bikes at our demo. We encourage the entire family to come up and enjoy it.”

Meadows will provide the opportunity to try it Friday, February 12 with free Fat Bike demos provided by Mountain View Cycles of Hood River. With a riding area set up in Yellow Meadow (conveniently located near the North Lodge) and with a course to take some laps on a Fat Bike. You can also bring your own Fat Bike to ride on the snow course.

Preregistration is recommended (though not required) to assure a chance to demo a Fat Bike for free. There is no charge and you can preregister at www.SkiHood.com/FatBike signed waivers are required so parents must accompany those under 18.

Meadows will make a party of it, thanks to sponsors, Mountain View Cycles, Trek Bikes, Craft Cycling Apparel and Hammer Nutrition showing off product and sampling. Experts will be on hand to talk about Fat Bikes and there will be some fun competitions as well. The event is scheduled from 11 AM – 3 PM Friday, February 12 (weather permitting).

For more details visit SkiHood.com.

One crazy thing about fat bikes is that ski resorts like Meadows can cater to them year-round. These bikes make snow-biking not just possible – it’s super fun. And in summer, I have a hunch more and more people will show up to the dried-out slopes on fat bikes instead of over-complicated and expensive “downhill” bikes. I’ve yet to spend quality time on a fat bike… But I have a hunch that might change in 2016.

— Jonathan Maus, (503) 706-8804 – jonathan@bikeportland.org

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NOTE: We love your comments and work hard to ensure they are productive, considerate, and welcoming of all perspectives. Disagreements are encouraged, but only if done with tact and respect. If you see a mean or inappropriate comment, please contact us and we'll take a look at it right away. Thank you — Jonathan

  • 37Dennis February 8, 2016 at 6:41 pm

    I’m more than sure that this is going to get hated on real quick. It will be interesting to see.

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    • Granpa February 9, 2016 at 8:08 am

      If yawns and disregard are hatred, then yup, this is a real target.

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      • 37Dennis February 11, 2016 at 12:45 pm

        Well I must have assumed (embarrassingly enough ), with all the vitorle surrounding off-road cycling in this community…. I guess I was wrong.

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    • ethan February 9, 2016 at 10:01 am

      Why would anyone hate on this? I love fatbikes and everyone I know who has ever ridden one loves them too. Free rides are also cool.

      Unfortunately, I don’t think I can make it due to the timing and the fact that I would need to rent a car to get up there.

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  • Spenzor February 8, 2016 at 9:34 pm

    Rented a fat bike a few weeks ago in Bend. It was fun as all get out. Sorry this is on Friday though… I guess if they gave out free fat bike rides on a Saturday they would probably be overwhelmed with requests.

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  • Reginald February 8, 2016 at 10:22 pm

    Let ‘er rip!

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  • MNBikeLuv February 9, 2016 at 9:00 am

    If you keep mountain bike trails groomed in winter, its a blast.


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  • Andrew Kreps February 9, 2016 at 10:19 am

    I can’t even tell on their trail map where this event is.

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  • Andrew Kreps February 9, 2016 at 10:24 am

    Also, their blog page states South Lodge while the PR above states North Lodge- I tried to comment on their blog post but it went into the abyss.


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  • dan February 9, 2016 at 11:07 am

    Fat bikes are indeed awesome, and the 100’s of miles of groomed snowmobile trails makes for endless opportunities for riding, both single day trips and over-nighters. Also they’re great for bikjoring.
    I can see some hate coming from the usual anti-bike crowd. In my opinion, the only folks that respond to fat bikes with “yawns and disregard” are those that haven’t been out riding one yet.

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  • Steve February 9, 2016 at 11:55 am

    +1 for the fat bike “fad”, I now own three and would never go back. They are so much more versatile than anything else on the market. Glad to see one of the ski resorts with some foresight.

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  • Fred February 9, 2016 at 1:37 pm

    Just go my first fat bike. It’s a blast to ride! And it’s not just for riding in the snow. 🙂

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  • GlowBoy February 10, 2016 at 1:10 pm

    Now being in Minnesota, I have acquired a low-cost fatbike and agree they’re absolutely a blast to ride. And as you’ve been hearing, not just on snow or sand: mine has become my year-round mountain bike, I enjoy it so much.

    As I’m finding, the more common size (4″ tires) still requires the snow to be somewhat firm if it’s deep. I hear the 5″ tires (requires a different bike with different bottom bracket, hubs, etc) work a lot better in deep snow, but i’m still finding mine to be good in a fairly wide range of snow conditions. And pretty much any beach riding (vastly underrated!) you want to do.

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