Chugach Fat Bike Festival Recap 2017

Chugach fat bike bash downhill mountain fat bike race in Valdez, Alaska

The first weekend in March, I was lucky enough to spend some time up in Valdez, Alaska with some fatbike and freeride enthusiasts for the 2nd annual Chugach Fat Bike Bash.  Despite some cold and windy weather, there was a lot of fun to be had on the snow, on fat bikes!!!! I learned a lot this weekend.  Alaskans are hearty people!  They don’t complain about the weather, and they are crazy.  They also know how to throw a party.

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If you are going to ride a fat bike, you should ride one in Alaska, hands down.  The landscape and scenery are so amazing.  Everything in Alaska is huge, so you need huge tires to ride it!   Valdez was the location for Levitation 49’s Fat Bike Bash and it did not disappoint.  Tough to get to?  Yes!  Scary ice-covered passes to drive?  Of course!  A rental car with studded tires was required and proved to be among some of the most fun driving the sheets of ice they called roads in town.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words so here they are with captions for easy reading.  Enjoy!

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Fat bike riding on the Valdez Glacier. Pictured: Andrew Taylor (@andrewtaylormtb), Noah Broussard (@noahbbrousseau) and Simon Bosman (@bosman.s)
Riding on the Valdez Glacier. Pictured: Andrew Taylor (@andrewtaylormtb), Noah Broussard (@noahbbrousseau) and Simon Bosman (@bosman.s)
Riders perched at the start of the downhill, looking pretty tiny in comparison to the huge mountains surrounding Valdez.
Riders perched at the start of the downhill, looking pretty tiny in comparison to the huge mountains surrounding Valdez.
Prince William Sound as seen from the top of the downhill race course, which featured a fast cat track groomed course, along with jumps to keep riders on their game.
Prince William Sound as seen from the top of the downhill race course, which featured a fast snowcat groomed track, along with jumps to keep riders on their game.

 

 

Russ Risdon (@pedalfitruss), not only a great MTB skills coach, but mechanic, racer and pilates instructor for the weekend.
Russ Risdon (@pedalfitruss), not only a great MTB skills coach, but mechanic, racer and pilates instructor for the weekend.
There was reason to celebrate after some had finished the XC race down by Kelsey Pier.
There was good reason to celebrate after some of us had finished the XC race down by Kelsey Pier.
Ice caves as blue as blue could be, ages old and formed only by water and pressure.
Ice caves as blue as blue could be, ages old and formed only by water and pressure.

Dawn patrol wating for the tide to go out and ride the beaches surrounding Valdez.
Dawn patrol wating for the tide to go out and ride the beaches surrounding Valdez.
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