Whether you love fat bikes or hate them, there’s no denying that they have become a solid fixture in the world of mountain biking, and invite their own following and unique culture. They even have their own holiday–Global Fatbike Day, which takes place on the first Saturday in December.
Global Fat Bike Day (GFBD) started as a grassroots movement in 2012. A couple of guys who had started a fat bike forum in the UK dreamed of getting all the great like-minded fat enthusiasts they had met on the forum together for a ride, but with time and money constraints and geographical barriers, it was tough to gather everyone in the same place. So, via the forum and social media, they decided to create a day dedicated to fat bikes. Everyone could go ride on their own or with a group of buddies wherever, however, and for as long as they liked, and then share their experience online.
GFBD has grown into a worldwide phenomenon, especially as the popularity of fat bikes has increased exponentially in recent years. When it started, those silly wide-tired contraptions were still an oddity, but now, many mountain bikers have a fat bike in their quiver. More and more brands are jumping on board and developing a fat offering.
A lot of bike shops and clubs host their own GFBD events. They can be hard to find because of their small, grassroots nature, but I did some research and put together a list of many of the GFBD events that I came across online, grouped by region.
–Saugerties, NY – Group ride on the Round Top Trails with Revolution Bicycles and Fats in the Cats Bicycle Club
–Ebensburg, PA – GFBD Bar-Bike-Que with City Cycle Supply Inc. and Pour On Center. There will be two distance options for a ride/race on the Ghost Town Trail, followed by beer and food at the bar
–Davenport, IA – Group ride, games, fat bike demo, and more hosted by Healthy Habits Bicycles and Nutrition
–Mankato, MN – GFBD with Nicollet Bike Shop
–Two Rivers, WI – Ride at Point Beach State Park, fat bike derby, pizza, beer, night rides, and opportunities to spend the night and hang out all weekend
–Brandon, SD – 25k ride called the Fat ‘n’ Spooky
–Rapid City, SD – Casual group ride with Acme Bicycles
–Traverse City, MI
–Lawrence, KS – Ride on the Lawrence River Trail
–Brighton, MI – Big group ride with the Sons of Fatarchy
–Deckers, CO – UpaDowna, a non-profit that aims to provide access to outdoor adventures, is hosting a whole fat bike weekend at Camp Shady Brook. Activities include group rides, camping, food, and beer
–Grand Targhee Resort, WY – Free demo day on fat bike trails at the resort
–Fredericton, New Brunswick – Ugly sweater fat bike ride to benefit the Fredericton Food Bank
–Nipika Mountain Resort, British Columbia – Weekend of activities including a fat biking 101 presentation and the opening of an all-new purpose-built fat bike trail
If one of these events is near you, great! If not, check with your local bike shop to see if there is anything going on in your area. If there isn’t, you could take it upon yourself to organize a group ride, or just go ride your fatty alone or with a small group of friends.
You can share your experience on social media with the hashtag #GFBD2016
Now get on your (fat) bikes and ride!