Fat bike history- Alaskan and New Mexican ingenuity
We have invited the fat bike pioneers to the expo and their early versions of fat bikes will be on display at the Egan Center in Anchorage.
The first verstions of fat bikes appeared in Alaska in the mid to late 80’s. A bike named the “six pack” ridden in the Iditabike by Roger Cowles. Icicle Bicyle Steve Baker welded two and three rims together for a larger footprint on snow. Simon Rakower from Fairbanks started making 44 mm snowcat rims in the mid 90’s and were an Alaskan standard for snow riding for a long time.
In 1999 Alaskan Mark Gronewald met New Mexican Ray Molina at Interbike in Las Vegas the first fat bike rolled down the Iditarod Trail in 2000 changing the riding on snow forever with 80 mm Remolino rims and his famous Chevron tires.
Surly produced the first Pugsley bike, 65 mm Large Marge rims and 3.7″ Endomorph tires in 2005.Many other fat bike brands have followed since about 2010.Today fat bikes are the fastest growing segment of the bicycle industry.
The race known as the Iditabike, Iditasport, the Iditarod Trail Invitational race (ITI) has taken place in Alaska on the famous Iditarod Trail a dog sled route across Alaska-every winter in February for over 25 years.
Snow biking in Alaska has been a long tradition dating back to the 1900’s.
Prospectors in the Klondike Gold Rush in the 1890’s used bicycles to travel overland and followed dog sled routes into the gold fields as chronicled in “Wheels on Ice” by Alaska Northwest Publishing Company edited by Terrence Coleman 1985. One of the accounts in this collection is of Edward R. Jesson who rode from Dawson to Nome in 1900 a distance of about 1000 miles.
http://orbike.com/fat-bike-history-101/ by Vince Rodarte June 2015
http://www.adn.com/article/fat-bikes-setting-record-straight by Craig Medred February 2013
A brief history about Iditabike by Jill Homer on her blog Half Past Done in February 2013.
A brief history about fat bikes by Nicholas Carman for Adventure Cycling Association in February 2014.