If the ever increasing number of people out on our local trails riding fat tire snow bikes instead of nordic skiing is any indication, then it’s safe to say they are here to stay. With massive (4”-5”) wide tires running unbelievably low pressures, these bikes have extended the riding season around Alaska throughout the eight-month long winter. Trails once used only by cross-country skiers, snow machines and dog mushers are now becoming popular with fat bikers as well. But more interesting to us are some of the unique winter-only adventures these bikes have opened up. Last month local brand Fatback loaned us a couple of their latest and greatest bike models to get out with.
We planned out two very different winter-only adventures while we had the demo bikes. First was an apparel shoot on the local trails near Anchorage and a full day trip to Spencer Glacier in the Kenai Mountains. With the mile-long glacier lake frozen, we could ride up to face of the glacier and explore ice caves only accessible during the frozen months. Getting up close and personal to the calving face of a glacier in the summer would be incredibly hazardous. Next we headed north for a week of riding and staying in public use cabins near the Arctic Circle. Frozen rivers and snow machine trails allowed us to bike across a landscape that is virtually impassable wetlands in the summer. The whole family went on this adventure by connecting a Thule Chariot to the bikes, allowing our two year old a warm ride into the cabins. The rest of our gear was carried in small backpacks and in various bikepacking bags by Revelate Designs.