Fat bike phenomenon

It’s the off-road biking on super-sized wheels craze that’s set to storm through summer like a ‘half a tractor’…

Yes, fat biking is bringing off-road to the masses from spring through to winter. But what’s behind its rising popularity on UK trails?

What are fat bikes?
Fat bikes were born in Alaska or New Mexico (depending on who you talk to) to battle through deep snow or sand respectively. They boast a mountain bike frame with up to 5-inch wide tyres and have no suspension forks, so the bike is much lighter than you’d imagine. The thick, knobbly nature of the low-pressure tyres promises a ride that’s comfy, safe and an absolute hoot. Obstacles can be tackled with ease, such is the traction, and to quote one reviewer, it’s “like floating on mud”.

Why fat bike?
You don’t need to be super-skilled or at peak level fitness to jump on board. Fat biking is a great way to get away from it all against picturesque terrain and can make for an amazing family outing. Furthermore, it’s a pursuit for all seasons – how about going for a spin on the beach this summer? With bikes growing lighter, cheaper in price, and most brands offering at least one in their range, there’s no excuse not to give it a go.

Where to ride
Have fat bike, will travel. Visit these sites for downloadable routes:
* Cumbria 
* Lancashire 
* South Downs