If you made one of your new year’s resolutions to cycle to work more often, you might already be contemplating an ebike as a way of making that more likely to happen on a regular basis in 2020.
But when the bad winter weather strikes and there’s even a threat of snow, what are you going to do? The answer could be to turn to a fatboy electric bike instead.
Let’s start with the basics by explaining what a fat bike is. You’ll probably have seen them on the roads, or maybe on mountain bike trails – they’re bikes with very chunky tyres. As Mountain Bike Rider’s 2019 buying guide noted, a fat bike typically has a tyre width of four to five inches.
Although they’ve grown in popularity among all kinds of cyclists in recent years, fat bikes were originally designed to be ridden on sand or in snow. This explains why you might want to consider one for your winter commutes.
Earlier this month, a number of US publications highlighted the growing popularity of fat bikes in the winter, with one of the reasons behind this their performance on snow.
Nevada Appeal, for instance, revealed that more and more people are using fat bikes to enjoy the mountainous landscapes even in the winter.
Sally Jones, manager of Tahoe Donner Cross Country Ski Area, which now offers fat bikes at its resort, told the news provider that customer requests prompted the business to explore this activity. “It’s a different way to get out on the snow and enjoy the winter without having to learn the skills of skiing or buy extra equipment,” she said.
But what about here in the UK, where we don’t always have snow? That’s not a problem because fat bikes are good for more than just riding on snow or sand. They’re great on mud, as well as pavements, which means they can handle any conditions that the UK’s roads throw at you.
The larger tyres mean they have better traction on slippery surfaces, which means you’ll probably feel more stable when you’re riding too.
Fat bikes are a great way to enjoy off road cycling too, including mountain biking trails. If you’re looking to spend more time on two wheels in 2020, both as a means of commuting and to keep fit and have some fun, they could be a great option.
An ebike version won’t stop you enjoying mountain biking trails either – in fact, it will just provide a little extra help on those steep climbs, which could give you an added incentive to get on your bike this year, even if you need to work on your fitness.
So far this year, the UK has been having a relatively mild winter, which means there hasn’t been too much snow. However, that could all change later this month and into February, according to the Express.
It highlighted a forecast from Netweather, which is predicting that freezing air is set to hit the country, potentially bringing snow with it, from the middle of the month. Scotland, Northern Ireland and north-west England are the areas most likely to see snow fall, the newspaper added.
Weather charts compiled by WxCharts also support the prediction that snow is set to fall in some parts of the country later this week. The organisation is even predicting that as much as 40cm of snow could fall in parts of northern Scotland in the middle of the week.
The company has also revealed that there is a “small chance” that the rest of the UK could see some snowfall later in the week.
This comes as the Met Office has issued a weather warning for strong winds on Monday 13 January, with these conditions sweeping in from the east and working their way across the country.
When there are reports of bad weather, but you’re intent on sticking to your new year’s resolution to complete more of your journeys by bike, it really does help to have tools that can support you.
An ebike will certainly make your morning commute a little easier and allow you to feel fresher when you arrive at work than if you’d cycled on a traditional bike. Choosing a fatboy ebike just means you can have greater confidence in your ability to ride in all kinds of weather conditions.
The British weather is nothing if not unpredictable, so it’s certainly worth being prepared and giving yourself the best chance of succeeding at cycling more in 2020. Just remember you can set up an ebike subscription, where you pay a monthly fee, rather than having to find the funds to buy your own fat ebike upfront.