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Fat vs. 29er Tires

When out for a ride this afternoon I grabbed this photo which fairly clearly shows fat bike tire prints vs. 29er tire prints. The top fat print is the Big Fat Larry that I mounted up a few days ago, and the lower one is the Larry pointed backward for increased traction while pedaling. Crossing this is some of my friend Jeremy’s tire tracks, a Specialized The Captain followed almost exactly by a WTB Nano Raptor.

This was taken in the parking lot of Shelby Township’s Whispering Woods Park while en route to meet Jeremy to ride at River Bends. Even though I was turning it still does a fair job of showing that a fatbike’s contact patch is twice as wide (or greater) than that of a typical 29er tire. From beach riding to snow, exploring soft floodplanes to checking out trail conditions in known-soft areas, it’s pretty nifty to see how many riding opportunities tires this wide open up. Sure, they is a big increase in rolling resistance, and most fatbikes are still very much rigid (read: pneumatic dampening with no suspension), but they sure are fun.

There’s a fair bit of snow in the forecast for the next couple of days. I’m really looking forward to some late afternoon (and hopefully evening, via the usual Wednesday Night Ride) excursions in the snow. Maybe this winter won’t be quite as sparse as the last, either. While I didn’t mind all the days of dirt road riding, Michigan is a great state for multiple outdoor activities. I’d rather enjoy having a nice winter for doing winter-y things.

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