On January 14th I was feeling a bit fatigued due to multiple reasons, but the weather was ripe for another fatbike ride! The real strategy behind this was to go out before the weather warmed and I couldn't go out on the trails.
Today I felt much more confident as I was still filled with happiness over my Tuesday ride. Today couldn't be worse, right? Nope! It was almost better! I didn't make it through the rock garden, but the moment that excited me the most was making both North 40 climbs.
To complete those climbs in one shot is something that I have mixed results with. Sometimes the first one trips me up, but I'll make the second. Today I went at the climbs without any expectation other than just simply to try. I worried midway up the second climb I'd loose my balance, however I maintained my traction and kept going.
Oh I felt like I was going to die! Well, almost. Okay....maybe not quite. I had to stop a bit and catch my breath; it's quite the workout in the warmer months but in the winter it's doubly so.
Like I mentioned in an earlier post, when it comes to fatbiking you really have to go out several times before you get a legit feel for it. Temperature and snow conditions are important factors when it comes to how successful your ride can be. The warmer temps had left the snow like powdery sand but the cooler temps helped firm it up and allow for better traction. When I went out the next day I faced some challenges early on. With the sun out and temps rising the snow became more slippery. (Something to note- it's not always a good idea to rent a fatbike when temps are above freezing. Snow becomes slop! Riding may be difficult and you could possibly trash the bike and damage the trails. It's always a good idea to ask how trail conditions are before renting.)
Out of 4 rides in one week, two of those rides were really awesome, confidence building rides. The other two were challenges, still enjoyable in their own way, but not the "epic" ride someone thinks they will have every time they go out.
You learn you have to sit and spin- the times that you can stand and climb are few and far-between. Fatbiking will take your riding to a whole new level! You will work different muscles, you will learn more technique, and it will make you a more well-rounded rider.
You also learn that you simply have to let go of expectations and just ride. (I keep having to remind myself of this.) If you slip and slide, you have to accept that it's all part of the experience. Everyone does. I've seen two experienced riders wipe out in front of me. I've seen Travis walk up a hill or not make a climb that I made. I've walked plenty of times. It's just about getting out there and having fun on two wheels!
Now that there is some freshly fallen snow out on the trails, I'll be able to experiences the challenges all over again. To feel that joy of cleaning a section again. Yeah, I'm ready!