Due to the growing popularity of winter biking, the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation along with our partners at VMBA and VAST is pleased to announce a Pilot Program for Winter Fat Biking for 2015-2016. The opening date for this season will be December 16, 2015 and the closing date will be April 15, 2016.
Fat Biking on snow is described as:
1. Wide tires — deep snow coverage may require tires wider than 3.5 inches.
2. Tire pressure will often be less than 10 PSI.
3. Enough flotation that you can travel over snow without leaving a rut deeper than one inch.
4. Sufficient traction that you are able to safely control your bike and ride in a straight line.
The locations for this pilot program have been determined by state land managers, VMBA representatives, VAST representatives and fat bike users.
To reduce conflict and lower the impact of snow biking on our existing trails, we ask that you to follow these guidelines.
Always be courteous to other snow travelers.
Best Practices for Fat Biking on Groomed Nordic Trails
Best Practices for Riding on Snowmobile Trails
The data says so! Check it out, in a new report: http://headwaterseconomics.org/land/reports/trails-research
IMBA developed the "Rules of the Trail" to promote responsible and courteous conduct on shared-use trails. Keep in mind that conventions for yielding and passing may vary in different locations, or with traffic conditions.
State and Federal Partners Collaborate to Expand Fat Bike Access in Vermont
The Vermont Mountain Bike Association (VMBA) recently met with the Vermont Dept. of Forests Parks and Recreation (FPR), the US Forest Service and, the Vermont Association of Snow Travelers (VAST) to address the management of fat biking throughout Vermont.
As fat bikes are gaining in popularity, riders have been seeking places to enjoy the Vermont winter. This has led them to the groomed trails of the VAST network. 85% of the VAST trail network is located on private lands, with permission granted exclusively for snowmobiles. Fat bikes are not allowed on these trails and there have already been some reports of user conflict.
In the effort to promote the safety of all winter recreationists, VMBA has teamed up with VAST, FPR, and the Forest Service to identify appropriate locations on public lands where fat bikers and snowmobilers could enjoy shared use. A statewide assessment has been initiated that will identify opportunities where fat bikers can further enjoy their state and federal lands. With established parking lots, public access, and a 35 mph speed limit for snowmobiles, public lands provide an ideal location for shared use trails. The goal is to have these areas identified, marked, and a trail ethic developed for the ’15¬/’16 winter season.
VMBA is excited to explore fat biking opportunities in Vermont with VAST, FPR, and Forest Service for the ‘15/’16 riding season. Over the next few months, all stakeholders will be sharing information, identifying appropriate trails, and developing strategies for maintenance and grooming.
For the remainder of this winter, FPR has provided opportunities for fat biking on campground roads in Allis, Fort Dummer, Gifford Woods, Molly Stark, Discovery and Quechee State Parks.
Join ORS for this year’s third annual Dirt Road Classic, the Muddy Onion. Come enjoy a 34 mile (mostly) dirt road ride in and around Montpelier’s beautifully-scenic dirt roads. This unique “gravel grinder” will feature rolling hills, historic farms, beautiful views and plenty of climbing: about 4000ft of it! It’s the perfect way to kick off the spring riding season.
Registration is $25 and you can sign up early at Bikereg.com or the day of for $30 at Onion River Sports starting at 8:30am.
Registration is limited to 200 people and a portion of the proceeds will benefit the Cross VT Trail's Build A Bridge Campaign to construct a bridge over the Winooski River in East Montpelier. This project is a critical link in completing a car-free bike path from Montpelier to Plainfield and beyond.
Start/Finish: The ride will start at 9:30am from the Onion River Sports parking lot. The finish and post ride meal will be in the parking lot behind the shop.
Find more info on the ORS website!
This year's membership strip is blaze orange! The strip goes on your bike (anywhere you choose - use it to make a statement!) as a visual show of your support for Vermont's mountain bike trails. You get the strip - and a suite of awesome benefits like shop discounts and free trail day passes - when you join VMBA. When you join, select RPM as your chapter, and 50% of your membership dues go straight into our bank account for tools and materials to build our trails! Your membership fees also sweeten the pot for trails grants and support the organization that provides us with insurance and cool opportunities like the annual sustainable trail building weekend.
The annual Vermont Mountain Bike Festival at Ascutney Mountain is sure to be an awesome time! There are guided rides of the STAB Trails, camping, bike demos, great food, and games. Not to mention tons of awesome riders from all around the state and New England!
See you at the festival this year! Click here to register today!