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Love biking, love winter? You have to try fat bikes!

by Linda Warner

Fat Bikes at StrattonIf you have a passion for biking, you have to try fat bikes.  Developed to ride in sand or snow, these bikes get their name from their extra fat tires. Suitable for all ages and abilities, the wider hubs and tires allow better flotation and more stability in the snow.  You determine how challenging your fat bike experience will be by selecting from fairly flat terrain to steeper trails with twists and turns.  At Killington, fat bikes can be rented right at the resort from Fat Bike Vermont.  They are also happy to give you suggestions on which trails are most appropriate for your skill level.  For suggestions of where to stay in the Killington area, check out‘s Killington page.

Stratton also offers fat bike rental right at the Nordic Center and riding is on Nordic Center trails.  Stratton Mountain offers a large selection of lodging right on the mountain.  Or consider the nearby Red Fox Inn in Bondville, Vermont, for the perfect end to a day out on the snow.  Sit by a roaring fire or head to The Tavern, the Inn’s traditional Irish pub.

Another Stratton lodging option might be to stay in nearby Manchester, Vermont.  Manchester has much to offer as a base of operations including its own fat bike rental shop, Battenkill Bicycles.  The staff can answer all your questions including suggesting local trails just right for your skill level. (Manchester is also home to great restaurants and the Manchester Designer Outlets.)

Stowe DerbyAt Stowe, fat bikes are available for rental from local bike shops (AJ’s Stowe Bike Rentals and Mansfield Cycles). In addition, Peace Pups Dogsledding also offers fat bike tours.  Tours include four hours of riding and lunch at a local eatery.  Tour operators will plan a tour perfect for your skill level. They can also handle rental and local pick-up and drop-off.

The Stowe Derby, one of the oldest ski races in the country, added fat bikes to the race in 2013. Participants travel from the top of Mt. Mansfield through 20km of challenging terrain to finish 2,600 feel below in the village of Stowe.  This year the race is scheduled for February 28.

Fat Bikes from Village Sport ShopKingdom Trails in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom offers an extensive trail system perfect for fat biking. Rentals are available locally from East Burke Sports and Village Sport Shop.  The Comfort Inn & Suites in St. Johnsbury offers family-friendly accommodations less than a half hour drive from the trails.  For a truly Vermont inn experience, consider the WilloughVale Inn   in Westmore, Vermont, on Lake Willoughby.  Choose from cozy rooms with fireplace or private cottages.  The inn is a short drive from Kingdom Trails.

Whether biking is your passion or you want to experience something new, fat biking in Vermont winter is an adventure you won’t soon forget.

Killington Mountain Resort
Stratton Mountain Resort
Fat Bike Vermont
The Red Fox Inn
Manchester Design Outlets
Stowe, Vermont
AJ’s Stowe Bike Rentals
Mansfield Cycles
Peace Pups Dogsledding
Kingdom Trails
Northeast Kingdom
East Burke Sports
Village Sport Shop
Comfort Inn & Suites
WilloughVale Inn


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