The following is a true story, only the names have been changed, to protect the guilty.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Intended Purpose

Marginal ice
By now just about everybody and their brother, and sister, have a fat-bike. In my immediate area all the open land that no one used to ride is now quite common for the curious fat-biker. All the local trails get groomed in very quick, simply by the high volume of riders. Breaking trail or finding something new to ride is getting tough................. so we search.       

ArcFlash is the self designated ice thickness tester 

Best in Schow,The Mayor, ArcFlash, and Corky

First opening onto a lake

 Last Saturday we found just what we were looking for, an amazing route in an area our group had only been to once before. The first ride dubbed the Mayor's Ride was one of the most memorable in all my years on a bike. The outing on Saturday was of the same caliber. We started out on a four-wheeler trail that we had done some recon on the previous week. At that time the trail ended and we decided to bushwack around the area and see what we could find. We ended up building a fire cooking lunch and then headed home. By mid-week the three of us that had been on the ride were itching to get back out there with the rest of our crew.
Bikes don't shift too well like this

Wide open


Lunch time
We assembled five riders, all on fat-bikes, loaded with lunch items,water, and snacks... and for the most part, no time constraints. We got going early enough for a Saturday ride, hitting the trail at 10 am. We made two, partially frozen creek crossings right away, which set a good tone for adventure. When we got to where the trail had previously ended, we were delighted that it now kept going. It's not like we need a four-wheeler track to follow in the minimal snow, but it was fast and seemed to follow a route we would enjoy anyway. Initially the trail remained in the woods, but after a few more miles it got out onto a lake. From there it cut through long stands of cattails and onto other bodies of water and repeated the cycle several more times. After we emerged on a very large body of water, we had a grasp on where we were and started making our way to a lunch stop. Riding across most of the lake we settled on a calm,windless spot in the woods to build a fire and cook lunch.
Standard Imperial Fat-Bike Rider issued ultra-light weight everything utensil 

OK....nobody smile

All natural Halloween mask for next year


safety first
 Afterwards we set out for more exploring and eventually looped back to the lunch spot due to thin ice and open water. We had been out for about four hours at this point and began to head back. It was a bit of a slog in the final few miles as the exhaustion of playing all day was starting to come over us. The final challenges were the creek crossings, they were now deeper and not frozen. Soaking wet feet  or a detour didn't matter by now so we all rode through the axle deep water. We finished at 4pm, six hours before that we had no idea it would be such a memorable day.
AF up ahead testing ice thickness....If he falls in then we know it's not think enough

Water was way up


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