Thursday, January 21, 2016


Snowy day on the Monon.

I got the fatbike specifically for the purpose of riding in this kind of weather.  Unfortunately, the rear wheel went bad after a very few hundred miles and I failed in my attempt to shame BikesDirect into standing behind their product.  (BikesDirect:  "you get what you pay for.")

Too bad, too, because this would have been a cool ride in the 3" of powder coating the Monon Trail yesterday.

The ill-fated fatbike.
And both tires on the Salsa are flat, with no 28mm tubes left in the house.

What to do?  They are 25mm, to be sure, but the Schwalbe Marathons on the Neuvation are crying to be ridden in the dead of winter.  So ride them I did.

It was a balmy 18 degrees at 9 am heading north along the Monon. 

The y-axis got cut off, but that red line is running between 15 and 20.  Green is the dewpoint, whatever that means when it is too cold to have dew.

The plowing stopped suddenly in Broad Ripple, leaving me alone with my road bike and my thoughts in 3" of powder snow for the five miles to Carmel.  A little more use of the trail made the ride back slightly more challenging, with random packed snow and occasional ruts from a mountain bike or XC ski.

Things went south as I rode south of Broad Ripple.  Loads of rock salt had turned the snow to slush and water, but the noon temperatures were still south of 25 degrees.  (Mission accomplished:  three uses of a word, with different meanings, in the same paragraph.)  Now I was riding with soaked feet in freezing weather.  There were more than a few raised eyebrows as I heated my feet in warm water in the faculty lounge.


sam said...

I wonder if paying a shop $50 or so to rebuild the fatbike rear wheel would be a good course. On the one hand you hate to throw good money after bad. On the other hand, it takes precious few rides in the snow to make that $50 seem like money well spent.

Max said...

Yes, probably. Better than buying a set of fat wheels on Amazon for $200, only to have the same result. I will be self tightening those spokes today for a last effort.