Fat Bikes in the Bush – Your ultimate guide

If fat bikes aren’t something that normally hit your radar, chances are the mere mention of them conjures images of a burly American lumberjack-type dude belting through the snow with a can of craft beer in his bottle cage.

Here in Australia’s north, we don’t get a lot of snow. Well, except back in 1946, when according to my late mother, half an inch fell at Eidsvold.

In our part of the world, fat bikes are mainly seen as novelty bikes for the beach, but increasingly you’ll spot one on your local trails. Why?

Why would anyone choose a fat bike for XC when no Australian company actively markets them, let alone for that purpose? Indeed, you’ll rarely see a fattie on the floor of your local bike shop.

The reason is simple. It happens organically. You’ll ride with a group and someone will have a fat bike. They’re keeping up with the pack on climbs and nailing it on the descents, the sound of those big tyres rumbling.

You hear them laughing. A lot. That’s because fatties are fun. And the child inside you stirs. You want one. That’s how it happened for me.

So, the purpose of this article is to unveil the mystery of fat bikes, to explain them for those of us who live here in the sometimes-drenched but usually hot and dusty climes of Central Queensland.

I’ll discuss the pros and cons of riding a fat bike for XC, and if you already own one, I’ll provide some tips and tweaks to make your rig perform well on any terrain.

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