Friday, November 8, 2013

Welcome to JayP's Backyard Fat Pursuit!

It's been a long time comin', but the timing is just right!

Born out of pure passion for fat biking and feeling incredibly lucky to live in a place that I refer to as the "Moab of snow riding" and with the help of Fitzgerald's Bicycles, we are now launching an event to share this place and the sport. As an avid snow rider and racer myself, multi-year veteran of the recognized Alaska Ultra Sport, I have always felt my backyard and its surrounding resources have been nothing but perfect for preparation and training, without sacrifice or limitation. As the years go by, the more new trails I ride, the more people are getting into it, the more random inquires I field, the more I talk about places to go, the more comfortable I get with land managers, and the more I think "heck yea, we need a race!".

Being a pioneer of riding on snow in this area has also allowed me to impact, influence and get involved with snow riding advocacy efforts. This is a real hurdle we all face and one that we have addressed locally. A key lesson of advocacy is bring ideas to the land managers before they bring it to you (in the form of restrictions). Looking back we have built some great relationships with land managers and even been recognized nationally for some of the efforts and guidelines that have been put in place. Yes, we can ride on our Nordic tracks per a set of guidelines. Yes, we have met with our state grooming associates and Forest Service management to learn how things differ from area to area, but ultimately it is public land under that snow, nobody owns the snow! Yes, we did start the quite successful Fat Bike Summit in Island Park.

To keep generating activity and success, keep showing user need for snowbiking, and letting our neighboring national parks (Yellowstone, Grand Teton) see this first hand year after year will only add to the ammunition needed to actually ride in them one day! Riding along the border of Yellowstone National Park, where the race's long route will take you, is about the closest you can get right now.

Recognizing that the best events are set up with racers' ease of logistics and needs paramount, that is our main goal. Understanding not everyone wants to ride all day for days, like I do, 2 distances will be offered. Do you think one day you might want to head to the Iditarod Trail? Come do the 200K! Are you interested in a day ride? How about you want to do the 200k, but it is too much for your mate? There is also a 50K. And is that still too much? The options and accessibility to so many different trails can keep anyone entertained. Oh, you're a rider, but your partner is still saying they are a skier; there's plenty of nordic and alpine skiing too! The options are endless; don't make excuses!

With that I introduce to you JayP's Backyard Fat Pursuit. (BTW - You can count on a "Gravel Pursuit" in the Fall of 2014). This route is sure to be a classic and strong participation will show snowbiking's growth and excitement and demonstrate our responsibility to our neighboring park managers.

We are not ready to actually open up registration due to Forest Service Permits pending. We have received the verbal "OK", but don't want to open it until we receive the signed permit back in our hands.

Details will be added weekly at this point, but there is enough info here to get you thinking.


  1. Hello Jay,

    Why not a 100k distance as well? Thanks for putting this on.

  2. Putting on an event like this has enough logistical challenges as it is. We want to make it as flawless as possible and deliver the best experience possible to the racer. I like the idea of a 100k but being it's the first year I feel the 2 distances will accommodate most everyone. And you can always explore and go for another ride if you decided to do the 50 and it wasn't enough ;)!

  3. JayP,

    Is there possibility that the 200K could be a qualifier for Iditarod 2015?

    Tim Lutz