Sunday, 27 January 2013
Well yesterday I was lucky enough to get a ride to Snowpeak HQ for the Fat bike demo weekend - thanks to team Fujimoto !. The Japanese distributor of Surly & Salsa had about 10 different fat bikes available for test riding on a fantastic course that was marked out where people usually camp in the summer. The location of the Snowpeak HQ is deep in the Niigata mountains located not far from the city of Tsubame Sanjo, there was plenty of snow surrounding the HQ to test out the fat bikes capabilities . It was nice to finally see and ride the new 29 er Surly Krampus with its 3 inch fat tyres and it handled the deep snow with ease and I was able to launch it several times of a ramp as well, it handles really well and is fast. With the 50mm rabbit hole rims you could fit some fat slicks on it for the summer and switch over to the 3 inch tyres for the winter !, so it is a very versatile bike. As for the standard fat bikes , I rode a surly Pugsly kitted out as a single speed and it rode very well even in the deep snow but the bike I liked the best was the Salsa - Bear grease which is extremely light. It was a shock to be able to pick it up easily in one hand and it was so smooth. If you wanted to race a fat bike look no further than the Bear grease . Below are a few photos that I took yesterday plus a link to the remainder of the photos
Monday, 21 January 2013
Well now we are in the middle of winter here in Niigata City but this year has been quite tame compared to last winter when it snowed hard almost everyday for 3 months or more. Recently here in the city the snow has not been so deep at all and my Kona Jake with the new panaracer buster x 700c x 35 tyres have been preforming rather well. If you are looking for a good off road / winter tyre for your cross bike I can highly recommended these Japanese made tyres. But when you are faced with really deep snow you are going to need a Fat Bike !. When my shop first opened and my boss ordered a Surly Pugsly , I honestly thought it would be hard to sell such a bike because of the price and it is certainly not your every day commuter !. Although having ridden it a few times and once over a longer distance it can preform quite well even in dry conditions but of course due to its massive tyres its going to be a lot slower than a normal bicycle. So far I have sold about six Surly Pugsleys and a couple of Surly Moonlanders. This coming weekend Motocross International the importers in Japan of Salsa & Surly are holding a demo weekend at the HQ of the SnowPeak the famous Japanese maker of outdoor goods as their HQ is located in the countryside of Niigata with a large space for camping in the summer and snow shoeing etc in the winter. This weekend the Fat bikes will take over the trails at the SnowPeak HQ . Pictured in this post is a photo taken at last years event.
Thursday, 10 January 2013
I hope you all had a great break over the New year and as Niigata is covered in snow and rather cold I have been day dreaming of the warmer months ahead. I just built up a Surly Moonlander fatbike for a customer and the end of last year and later on this month on the 26th & 27th there will be a fatbike demo day out in the mountains at Snowpeaks HQ , 10 fatbikes will be available for test rides from Surly & Salsa. My shop has recently become a dealer of Porcelain Rocket bags made by Scott Felter who resides in Calgary , Canada. As I had my sister in NZ make me a custom frame bag out of an old SAG messenger bag I am quite interested in bike packing . It has become rather popular recently in many parts of the world and is just starting to take off here in Japan as well. The great thing about bike packing is that you do not have to attach racks to your favorite bike in order to head away for a few days but just strap on the bags you require to carry the items you need. Pictured in this post is Scott explaining how his bags work.