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2017 Rossland Fatbike Festival

 

Cycling, no matter where you live, is evolving. Rossland BC for example, is a ski town in the winter and a mountain biker’s dream in the spring, summer, and fall. Many of the residents of Rossland put their mountain bikes away and pull out their downhill skis, snowboards, snowshoes, or nordic equipment when the snow arrives. Three years ago this all changed. The local bike store, which was normally closed during the winter, was open. Thanks to a weird looking (beautiful to some) fatbike.

fatbike-big-tires

The amazing thing about this big tire beast? It pulls you back to your childhood cycling roots when riding fun.  All I know is, this bike puts a smile on the face of anyone who rides one.

Rossland Winter Carnival 2017 Version

fatbike_poster 2017

Day One: The Carnival Parade and Group Ride

When you consider how far away Rossland is from Victoria (700km+ and 8 hours of driving, not including the ferry), one has to have deep love for the town, event, skiing, and fatbikes. For the last three years, Oak Bay Bikes has organized a trip to Rossland and supported the FatBike Fest at Red Mountain.  For those who have committed the time and money for this adventure, they have never regretted the journey.

 

Olaus-Jeldness-fatbike

The Rossland Winter Carnival has been going since 1898 and I’m sure Olaus Jeldness, the Norwegian miner, who initiated Canada’s Oldest Winter Carnival would be stoked that fatbikes are now part of the celebration.

lighted-fatbike-2

The Friday night Carnival Parade kicks off the event. For those who have never ridden a bike down a three block gantlet of people, it isn’t easy, especially when the road is greasy.  I’m sure the crowd would be delighted if one of us went down while attempting a wheelie wearing spandex.

winter-carnival-parade

A group ride followed the carnival parade.

fatbike-group-ride

Day Two: Demo Day

Demo day is actually the highlight of the Fatbike Fest weekend. Seeing people ride a fatbike in the snow for the first time is a joy.  Over 50+ rides in four hours shows there is an interest in winter bike riding.

demo-day-2

Day Three: Fatduro Race Day:

herd of fatbikes

If you look hard, you won’t find any Oak Bay Bikes or Victoria Wheeler kits in this picture. Work and family forced us back home but we did manage to get up early in the morning and ride up towards the trail intersection of the 7 Summit trail and Dewdney Upper trail using the Cascade Road.

 

We found the sun and probably fatbike heaven with some excellent snow conditions.

fatbike-heaven

As for the race? A 51 year guy from Idaho won for the second year in a row.  The Rossland News gave the race some excellent coverage. When you consider over 40 fatbikes came out, the race was a success.

2017 FatDuro Results:

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fatbike-enduro-course-map-2

We will be back to Rossland BC in 2018.  For the Carnival, fatbikes and beer.

rossland-beer-fatbike