Ah, fat bikes. They seem to becoming more popular by the minute. I've seen them on the trails, roads, and even my neighborhood streets. Watching them roll by I'd wonder what it would be like to ride one. I decided it was high time to give it try and contacted Arik Peterson.
Arik owns As A Dad LLC, located in Des Moines. He provides fat bike rentals to folks wanting to gain experience but not another bike. Arik (the Dad) has a fleet of four Surly Pugsley's. Each is equipped with a flat repair kit and air pump. Bar mits are available during the cold months. He doesn't mind if you bring back a muddy bike. In his opinion it's proof you had fun.
My first adventure was at Maffitt Reservoir. It's a popular spot for fishing, hiking, and picnicking. Maffitt is also a known spot for bird watching. According to owa ornithologists, the Common Loon can be spotted here in the spring and fall.
My plan was to ride the 5 mile nature path that winds around the 200 acre lake. I would return to my vehicle via park roads and the highway crossing the dam.
The grass path was in decent condition. Bumpy but not unbearable. Recent rainfall resulted in a couple of muddy sections but with the super wide tires of the Pugsley I was able to navigate through them easily.
Several small fishing paths branch off from the trail leading down to the water. A fat bike would certainly come in handy for a fisherman who's eager to get to the water!
Thick foliage made it challenging to catch more than a fleeting glimpse of the lake. Once I reached the end of the nature trail I was finally rewarded with a great view of the water. Unfortunately no Loons.
Maffitt Reservoir was a great kick-off to my fat biking adventure. The bike handled great and was comfortable to ride. It was exciting to explore a trail where bikes aren't typically found and I was eager to see where else the bike could take me.
Where to next?