Friday, February 3, 2012

No snow bike, so snow dog

Dog-shaped lightning captured in mid sprint through shoulder-deep snow.
For some new fat bike owners out there, particularly those who have been vexed by an abnormally dry winter, I suppose I'm at the other end of the spectrum: plenty of snow but no fat bike. At a certain point today, I probably would have traded any five of my bikes for a fat bike.

Yesterday, the weather forecasters were huffing and puffing about a coming snowstorm. I don't generally pay much heed, as it is not infrequent that their predictions are overblown. As it turns out, this time they were right.

We awoke to school and work closures and a lot of white stuff all around. I spent much of the afternoon shoveling, and as there is already another 8+ inches of snow on the areas where I shoveled 12+ inches earlier, it looks like I'll be doing the same tomorrow.
Snowmobile tracks down the middle of the street. A perfectly groomed fat bike trail.
I've biked in snow for years out of fun and necessity. I know almost any bike can be successfully ridden in the snow with a little skill and some common sense. Yet, even as I'm cognizant of this, I've had an increasing hankering to ride truly fat tires in packed deep snow. So, in lieu of any half-hearted attempts to make do with a set of paltry 2.1" tires, today I opted to be entertained with four paws instead.
Who, me? Do I look like I could have just plowed through a snowbank and nullified your shoveling job?
Furry spotted snow dolphin swimming through the powder.
It takes a little more effort to sniff for random poo in a blizzard.
Scout and I are still pretty new to each other, and there remains a lot to discover. She's figured out her name, but we have yet to tackle any commands. Her personality (or is it dogonality?) is changing from that of a nervous stray to a confident family dog. One thing is certain; she really enjoys the snow.

Physiologically, Scout is a curious mix of dense fur in some places and much less dense in others. Her size is not unlike that of a smaller sled dog at 38 pounds, maybe like a Seppala Siberian Husky. She apparently has a guard coat and undercoat, but I'm no expert in making this determination, and has a lot of fur between her toes. In any case, she is no stranger to snow or life outside, frequently licking a mouthful of snow on the fly for a quick treat. At some point, we might have a doggie DNA test to find out what flavors contributed to her unique makeup.
Snow demon on the rampage.
Close to 8:00 PM looking to the East. It should be dark, but the snowflakes are illuminated in the sky by the city lights.
In any case, there is likely more snow fun in store for tomorrow. Definitely some sledding. In the slightly more distant future is the inevitability of a fat bike. Life is too short not to have fun. Besides, a fat snow bike would go well with a skinny snow dog.

So, anyone out there have a large framed Pugsley for sale or trade? I've got a vintage Trek sport tourer, an antique Vespa, an old Velosolex, and a handful of other bikes to be had.


  1. I heard on the radio this morning that you were getting blasted. Wish I could beam my fatbike down for you to play with in the storm - sure isn't doing me any good here.

    Regarding dogly nullification of a fine shoveling job, I can totally empathize. Hanging out with a creature that is experiencing that kind of pure joy sure is fun, though. Glad to hear Scout is settling in to her new role.

  2. I would happily test out your fatbike, given the chance. From the looks of it, you've got yours aced out more than any I've seen. Today's snow is a little stickier and seems like it would be even better than yesterday's for fat tires.

    It's tough to be angry with a dog for exalting in the snow so much. Besides, my little secret is that I enjoy shoveling. With a fatbike in mind, I envision a little snowy bikejoring as a great way to burn off some of that energy. Hopefully by next year.