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Monday, January 21, 2013

Welcome To Alaska, Where Winter Is Cold And Bikes Are Fat [NPR]


The plummeting mercury in Alaska this time of year doesn't keep bikers inside. More and more of them are heading to recreational trails and to the office on "fat bikes." They look like mountain bikes on steroids, with tires wider than most people's arms.
Kevin Breitenbach runs the bike shop at Beaver Sports in Alaska's second-largest city. Aboard a fat bike, he makes his way down a trail that winds through a forest as wet, quarter-sized snowflakes drop from the sky. Visibility is low, and the snow hides the roughest spots on the trail.
Breitenbach's bike is his primary form of transportation. When he's not commuting to work, he's racing in ultra-distance events.
"Now, if we were out here on regular mountain bikes, you'd just be all over the place. The bikes are set up to be stable, and so you can go much slower and still maintain your balance," he says.
[Keep reading at NPR]

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