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Fat Tire Winter Biking Popular At Some Midwest Resorts

Crystal-Mountain-fat-tire-biking-website Crystal Mountain bikers out on the trail. (Crystal Mountain image)

Fat tire winter biking, an option at some resorts in Michigan’s northern Lower Peninsula and northern Minnesota, also now offers rentals and one even lift service. Check it out.

Michigan’s Crystal Mountain was the first Heartland resort to offer fat tire biking seven years ago. They offer 12 miles of packed trails on the property and connect to the DNR Betsie River Pathway for another five miles of forested trails. It’s the most miles of trail offered for groomed fat tire biking in the Midwest. The trails are open daily and bikes rent for one hour $19 and two hours $25 including a trail pass. The trail pass is $10 if you use your own bike.

Boyne Mountain offers five kilometers of groomed trail for fat tire biking. Closed Monday and Tuesday and open 9 a.m.-4 p.m. the rest of the week. They rent both regular and electric fat tire winter bikes. The regular is $20 for one hour, $35 for two and $60 for six hours. The E-bike is one hour $35 and two is $55.

Boyne Highlands offers six kilometers of groomed trails for fat tire biking. Bike rentals run $30 for two hours, $50 for six hours and $80 if you want it for the day. A daily trail pass is $5. They don't offer E-bikes. Treetops offers a 5K groomed fat tire bike trail when conditions permit. Reservations are required, and bikes rent for $15 for one hour, $25 for two and $35 for three. The cost includes a helmet, map and bike lock.

Treetops offers a 5K groomed fat tire bike trail when conditions permit. Reservations are required, and bikes rent for $15 for one hour, $25 for two and $35 for three. The cost includes a helmet, map and bike lock.

Minnesota’s Giants Ridge has 60 kilometers of beautifully groomed Nordic trails that traverse Superior National Forest along the Gopher State’s Iron Range, and now also offers lift service for fat-tire bikes that are allowed on certain downhill trails. The roller coaster trails can be challenging or just go for a mellow ride in the woods. They rent bikes, $40 for four hours or less, and $75 for a day, or bring your own. A trail pass is required for the Nordic trails, $17 daily, and the lift-served access is $30 daily.

Spirit Mountain, overlooking Duluth and Lake Superior, has a little twist on their offering of fat tire biking. They allow lift-served, downhill winter fat biking Sundays, from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., through February 9. The cost is of a lift ticket is $65. Access for winter biking is through the Grand Avenue Chalet at the base of the mountain.

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