All posts by Tom Kolesnik

I'm just a guy who has a passion for producing videos that capture the adventure of all forms of cycling (especially fat biking) and other outdoor endurance pursuits. “If It Was Easy Everyone Would Do It” is often heard from those who enjoy meeting difficult challenges and persevering when others might not. This is what motivates me as an endurance junkie and videographer!

Ride Report: Checking out WCW’s Fat Friday Destination Ride

Really glad I could make it out to Woodcock Cycle Works (WCW) tonight to join their “Fat Friday Destination Ride” that was lead expertly by Currie and Miles – well done guys! 🙂

We had a nice group of fatties, one MTBer (hey ‘Muddy Guy’, where’s your FB? ;-]) and one skinny.  

We cruised some side streets, paths and bridges to the edge of the Forks area … all good until one newly modified to tubeless fatty tire went flat and we had a group ‘fix it’ session …

hmmm almost, almost … nope … two less riders in our group as ‘flat fatty’ and friend returned back to the shop. 😦

So off to the Assiniboine Park Duck Pond shelter we went …

The pitstop was nice on a cold night ride. 🙂

Back to the shop via park pathways, Wellington, train bridge and quiet side roads …

Customary ride by the Legislature …

Hello Riel …

Here’s Miles pausing us for a drink/snack break …

Here’s Currie, Miles and Guy back at WCW …

Thanks again Currie and Miles for leading the ride and ‘Rolling with the Fat Flat’ to adjust our destination ride to the Duck Pond.  6:00 to 8:30 for a fun group ride!  Nice! 🙂

If you are interested in WCW Fat Friday Destination Rides, then contact WCW or connect with their FaceBook Event Page HERE (or click image below):
https://www.facebook.com/events/299720427527872/

Cheers, Fat Tom K

7th Annual Winnipeg GFBD Ride – Sat Dec 1st 2018: It’s going to be a Huge Blast!

Giddy Up Winnipeg area Fatties – it sure looks like our 7th Annual Winnipeg Global Fat Bike Day Ride planned for Saturday December 1st 2018 is going to be Bigger and Better than ever! 🙂

Winnipeg GFBD Ride 2018 - Banner 8b

Four days ago, I announced our Wpg GFBD Ride Leader’s Team plans and invited local fatbikers with a Public FaceBook 2018 Wpg GFBD Ride Event and we already have over 100 looking at attending!  That’s a larger number than in previous years when 100 riders actually joined the ride.  In fact, because there are plenty of riders who are not on social media or chose not to commit until a few days before GFBD, it sure looks like this will be our biggest.

Here’s the plan:

No costs … just bring a smile, your fatbike (borrow or rent one – but we are inclusive, so a MTB can work for most or all of the route and you can parallel the Seine River on roads if necessary), toque and a helmet of course (silly helmet covers are always welcome 😜).

Just like in previous years – we will meet outside at:
The Forks Canopy/Tower Atrium area at 12:00 Noon, Sat 1 Dec 2018:

2017 Wpg GFBD Ride - Route Recce Pic 1

2017 Wpg GFBD - Tom's Pics 1

We will organize and then head off on our ‘Media Ride‘ at 12:15 (led by Keith Holm, Lou Fatinski, Guy Anthony, Chris Black, Jonathan Letkemann and myself) …

Screen Shot 2015-11-28 at 7.21.43 PM
Here’s the ‘Media Ride’ section from the Forks ‘Canopy – Atrium’ start to the East side of the Red River across from the St Boniface Cathedral via the Esplanade Louis Riel Footbridge.
2017 Wpg GFBD - Tom's Pics 2
Riding down from the Forks Market area.
2017 Wpg GFBD - Tom's Pics 3
Here’s Keith Holm (orange helmet) leading our ride up towards the CMHR.

we will ride across the Esplande Louis Riel Bridge

2017 Wpg GFBD - Tom's Pics 5
High Fives (and Low Fives) are always welcome as we cross the bridge.  Here’s one of our ride guides Guy Anthony (yellow bike) leading the way.

We will arrive at 12:30 at our usual Group Photoshoot on the East side of the Red River down from the St B Cathedral …

2017 Wpg GFBD - Tom's Pics 7

2017 Wpg GFBD - Tom's Pics 8

… at our usual Group Photoshoot on the East side of the Red River down from the St B Cathedral, where our very own super Fatbiker-Photographer Gregory McNeill will be waiting to capture our now-classic Winnipeg GFBD group photo.

2017 Wpg GFBD Ride Grp Pic - Gregory McNeill

After our group photo we will head of on the same route as last year as one group (about 90 minutes from the Photoshoot to the Chilifest Pitstop).

Depending on weather and road/trail/river conditions the route may change, but your current ride route will likely be:

Wpg GFBD 2018 Ride - Route Full Loop
This the same route as last year and it worked really well.
From the Photoshoot we will head north along the Red River shoreline trails
2017 Wpg GFBD - Tom's Pics 9
2017 Wpg GFBD near Whittier Park - Blake's Pic
Great picture taken by Blake Anderson (he climbed the old toboggan tower by Whittier Park)!
and then into Whittier Park to ride the single-track trail
2017 Wpg GFBD - Tom's Pics 10
Riding the Whittier Park single-track trails.
and south onto the Seine River shoreline trails  …
2017 Wpg GFBD - Tom's Pics 11
Riding the Seine River single-track trails.
We ride trails until south of the Westeel Plant until just east of the top end of Youville St, where we will exit the shoreline and up onto roads …
2017 Wpg GFBD Ride - Route Recce Pic 15

 

and ride south on Youville Street for three blocks, cross Marion Street via cross walks (light controlled):

2017 Wpg GFBD Ride - Route Recce Pic 17
Marion Street crosswalks (light controlled).
We continue south on Youville St for another four short blocks south to Dubuc St to head east until we can access the Seine River edge trails off of Dubuc St for short distance then onto the Seine River (well frozen safe section) south for about 15 minutes of beautiful winding sheltered river riding …
Gregory's 2017 GFBD flickr Album 3
Here’s some of pictures of us riding onto the Seine River taken by our Official GFBD Photographer Gregory ‘G-Mac’ McNeill who will be active again this year.
2017 Wpg GFBD on the Seine - Blake's Pic 1
Here’s a great view of us riding onto the Seine River captured by Blake Anderson.
2017 Wpg GFBD - Tom's Pics 15
Solid frozen/firmly packed snow conditions last year made our ride on the Seine River ideal!
2017 Wpg GFBD Ride Grp Pic on Seine River
Here we are reformed as a group on the Seine River.
We exit west off the Seine River by Humboldt Ave and ride west via more quiet roads …
2017 Wpg GFBD Ride - Route Recce Pic 23
to Kingston Row/Crescent …
2017 Wpg GFBD Ride - Route Recce Pic 24
2017 GFBD riding to chilfest pitstop - Gregory's Pic
… leading to our “Chilifest” pitstop at a fatbike-friendly home on Kingston Crescent near Kingston Park (arrive +/- 2:00-2:15 PM).
Gregory's 2017 GFBD flickr Album 5
2017-wpg-gfbd-at-the-chilifest-blakes-pic.jpg
After ‘chillin’ time, you can head home or back to the Forks via Churchill Parkway directly to the Forks (30 minutes) or head homeward as best suits you. We will have guides heading back to the Forks leaving the Chilifest pitstop at 3-ish, 3:30-ish & 4-ish.
2017 Wpg GFBD Ride - Route Recce Pic 33b
Of Note:
This year we are fortunate to have the Safety Support from Robert Paige of Xtreme Sports Medics.  He and his Medics Team will be following our route with his fully equipped Medical Vehicle and always ready to respond (not that we should need their help).
Xtreme Sports Medics Banner Collage
* Btw, we will be obeying all traffic signs on our group rides, though we hope to use as much trail as possible … and no one will be left behind. 🙂
*Btw 2, like last year there will be other riders and groups that will likely meet up in their part of the city to ride as a group to the Forks to join in or who may wish to have a group ride after our Wpg GFBD Ride – excellent, the more the better.

1. There is usually a group that rides in from the NE (Transcona).

2. There are a number of guides and riders who are planning to meet at the Elm Park (BDI) Footbridge at 11:00 AM to ride to the Forks – Keith, Chris and I will be with that group.

3. There will be a group riding from Woodcock Cycle Works (WCW) on St Mary’s to ride to the Forks – Nic Robitaille is the WCW Lead Guide.

 

Check out my video of our 2017 Wpg GFBD Ride:

Any questions or route conditions updates, please make a comment or email me through the ‘Contact Form’ on this site.
Cheers,
Tom Kolesnik
‘Fat Tom K’

 

WCW: Fat Bike Club Rides – Starting 15 Nov 2018 on Thurs & Fri Nights

Posted for the Woodcock Cycle Works (WCW) Fat Bike Club Ride Leaders:

WCW Fat Bike Club Rides - Starting Nov 15th 2018 Pic copy

What is the Fat Bike Club?

We can always use someone to ride with and that’s what Fat Bike Ride Club is all about. It’s a chance for us to get on our bikes, enjoy the company of familiar faces and share that experience with you. Our rides are suitable for any cyclist and make it easy to get in your 2-hour training ride. Led by trained and experienced ride leaders, club rides are insured for your safety through the Manitoba Cycling Association. And when you register as a member of the WCW Ride Club you get a whole host of perks in store. Our first Fat Bike Ride Clubs will commence on November 15th and will run Thursdays and Fridays every week.  For more info get in touch with us rideclub@woodcockcycle.com

Now if you haven’t been on a WCW Fat Bike Club Ride then just click on the FBM Website Blog Posts Category “Woodcock Fat Bike Group Rides” on the right column of the website.

You may also want to check out a little video called “Hang Loose” I made from one of WCW’s Rides last winter:

Cheers, Fat Tom K

Fat Video Time: 2019 Fat Viking Race in Geilo, Norway

Check out this excellent Fat Viking Race Promo Video just made by Mattieu Leroux,  who I have been connecting with over the last few months about his plans to race the FV150 this year in Geilo, Norway, which is organized by Race Director and Fat Viking champion and my friend Nina Gassler (I did some fatbiking and bivy camping on Lake Winnipeg with her in 2016 and race the first FV175 in 2017):

 

The Fat Viking is an excellent Winter Endurance Race held in stunningly beautiful Geilo, Norway in very hilly terrain (big ski hills, lots of multi-use XC ski trails, etc) with usually lots of deep snow and challenging winter weather conditions.

Fat Viking Race 2019 Promo Video Banner 2

Race Director Nina Gassler has built a strong organizing team (The FatViking Society)!
Fat Viking Race 2019 Promo Video - Image 1

Are you ready for a Challenge worthy of a Viking?

fat-viking-race-2019-promo-video-image-5.png


Not sure yet?  Okay then, check out my little video from racing the 2017 FV175:


How about these maps and views from the race
(Btw January 2017 was a very unusually warm period in Geilo and so in the lower terrain it was very icy, so we all rode fully studded tires and needed studs on our boots as well!  Last year they had tons of snow before and during the race!):

Fat Viking 175 - Maps View

Fat Viking 175 - Vertical View

2017 FV 175 Pic 1

2017 FV 175 Pic 17

2017 FV 175 Pic 2b

2017 FV 175 Pic 4

2017 FV 175 Pic 5

2017 FV 175 Pic 6

2017 FV 175 Pic 8

2017 FV 175 Pic 10

2017 FV 175 Pic 12

That’s what I thought … of course you are ready!

Links here:
http://www.geilo-aktiv.com/no/fat-viking

https://www.facebook.com/groups/fatviking/

Cheers, Fat Tom K (1st year addition Fat Viking)

 

2WR Announces: 2018-19 MB Fatbike Race Series & Social Events Schedule

Posted for Wayne Bishop of 2 Wheel Revolution (2WR) – it’s out on social media:

“As we kick off another start to an amazing season we have some new sponsors, tricks and additions.  New venues for races and rides.  So get on board and be prepared.  All New race routes and a lil secret trail special for the Moonshiner.

Race Schedule as follows …
Birch Mountain – Sunday, December 9, 2018
Falcon Ridge – Sunday, January 13, 2019
The Forks – Sunday, February 10, 2019
Bison Butte – Sunday, February 24, 2019

Social Schedule as follows…
Intro to Fatbike – Saturday, November 24, 2018
Global Day the 2WR Way – Saturday, December 1, 2018
Moonshiner – Friday, December 21, 2018

More dates TBD

Check out 2WheelRevolution.ca for more info”

2WR Banner

MB FatBike Race Series 2WR Poster

He He He … now that’s got me excited!  How about you?  Giddy Up Fatties! 🙂

Cheers, Fat Tom K

Actif Epica 2019: Race Registration is Live

Posted for the Actif Epica Race Team (posted to the AE Site Registration Page today):

“Registration is now live for Actif Epica 2019, the weekend of February 15th-17th. Sign-up is available via Webscorer:
(https://www.webscorer.com/register?raceid=155624)”

Actif Epica 2019 Registration - Webscorer Page

So giddy up Fatties … time to register and get training for a terrific winter ultra race challenge! 🙂

Need some perspective on the race then check out my video “Actif Epica Race 2014 – Meeting the Challenge”:

* BTW, when the video ‘appears’ to end at 3:49 – keep watching and you listen and be inspired by the Ultra Foot Racer (now avid fatbiker) Gregory ‘G-Mac’ McNeill, when I walk into the finish with him along the Red River approaching the Forks!  This is exactly when G-Mac and I first bonded and fellow adventure friends and partners!  He is awesome in many ways – athlete, adventurer, photographer, volunteer, stalwart friend …

Cheers, Fat Tom K

Fat Video Time: “Cold Spokes” – Volunteer Fatbike Trail Grooming

WOW!  Check out this very inspiring video just released on YouTube called “Cold Spokes”, which tells the story of the volunteer trail groomers keeping the network of winter fatbike trails open for riding in Michigan, USA.

As they describe it:
“The Upper Peninsula of Michigan is home to roughly 80 miles of groomed [winter Fat Bike] trails. It is the largest network in North America. These trails exist thanks to the contributions of local land owners and government entities, and they thrive thanks to the volunteer efforts of a handful of dedicated hard working people.”

Enjoy:

I must say this video has come along at a very pivotal time for me, as I am about to commit to some ‘soon to be announced’ endeavours in support of increased winter fatbike trail access and grooming, support to our growing local fatbike race series and for me personally to enable more Fatbike Adventures in Manitoba.

So, I too will soon join the ‘gang’ of Manitoban fatbikers who own one of these sweet rigs … the SnowDog:
SnowDog - Wayne Bishop on Bison Butte 1

SnowDog at Falcon 1

It’s not hard for me to imagine these SnowDogs out on Lake Winnipeg … making recon trips and grooming a track:SnowDog Pic - 1

Plus hauling gear and or people as needed:
SnowDog Pic - 2

Here’s to more adventures and fun ahead … ‘Rolling our Fatties’! 🙂

Cheers, Fat Tom K

Website ‘ReBoot’: All is well now! :-)

FYI, due to WordPress platform/template admin issues and the need for security modifications, a lot of content had to be reclaimed/reloaded and so …

keep-calm-reboot

… after a lot of work the site is back up to date and ready to roll – just in time for another winter season of ‘Rolling our Fatties’! 😉

Note: If you were a regular WP Follower or Email Follower of this site (50+ of you good folk were), then you will have to ‘Re-Follow’.  Sorry for the hassle.

Cheers, Fat Tom K
FBM Editor and WebMaster – almost as cool as a ChessMaster! 😉

Fatbike “Bivy A Month (BAM) Challenge”: Westman Steven & Fat Tom K

So if you haven’t noticed that Fat-Bike.com has been doing this “Bivy A Month (BAM) Challenge” thing on their website, where they challenge fatbikers to get out for an overnight fatbike camping outing – Bivouac (Bivy) style; then check out this link to their website BAM blog posts (complete with videos):
https://fat-bike.com/category/bivvy-a-month/

Anyways, a few days back I get a call from my bud ‘WestMan’ Steven Sloat who lives and rides out west in the Shilo-Brandon area saying:  “Hey Tom, I’m going to be out in Winnipeg for a few days working at the 17 Wing Air Base (he’s an Army Officer) and hey if you’re not to busy at work (I’m an Air Force Officer at 17 Wing) and stuff, let’s go for a ride and a bivy”.?

So giddy up, we met up on fully loaded fatbikes and rode west of the city to a perfect wooded camping spot (not far from Beaudry Park), cooked up some grub and set up camp (in the dark of course) …BAM 30 Sep 2018 - Steven & Tom - 0a

Since the forecast had a good percentage chance of rain-snow mix, I decided to go with a classic bivy sac with a hooped area at the head area – all I needed and cozy …
BAM 30 Sep 2018 - Steven & Tom - 1

Steven opted to bring the fly to his 2-Person light weight MSR tent (good call) …
BAM 30 Sep 2018 - Steven & Tom - 2

Good thing his setup was roomy, cuz apparently Steven ‘transforms’ during the night! 😉
BAM 30 Sep 2018 - Steven & Tom - 3

As it turns out the wet weather skirted us and we enjoyed fairly clear skies and only a bit of frost …BAM 30 Sep 2018 - Steven & Tom - 6

We had decided to forgo a full campsite breakie, in favour of an early rise, pack and ride into Headingly to Nick’s Inn (a cyclists’ favourite) for a hot and hardy breakfast! 🙂

Our quick pack up did afford some time for sunrise photos:
BAM 30 Sep 2018 - Steven & Tom - 7

BAM 30 Sep 2018 - Steven & Tom - 8

The ride heading east was on dry gravel and pavement was a breeze and scenic:
BAM 30 Sep 2018 - Steven & Tom - 9

Nick’s Inn – a welcome sight and refuge of comfort! 🙂

Then it was off to the north and east on gravel roads back into Winnipeg …
BAM 30 Sep 2018 - Steven & Tom - 12

Then onto the Silver ‘Yellow Ribbon’ Multi-Use Pathway …
BAM 30 Sep 2018 - Steven & Tom - 13

… to Canadian Forces Base Winnipeg (17 Wing Air Base) to drop off Steven (he had meetings) and then I had a nice ride across the city ahead to get back home …
BAM 30 Sep 2018 - Steven & Tom - 14

My route took me to the Assiniboine Park Footbridge …
BAM 30 Sep 2018 - Steven & Tom - 15

and too the AP Duck Pond for a pitstop to catch up on Steven posting pics all over social media – because sharing is all part of the fun! 🙂
BAM 30 Sep 2018 - Steven & Tom - 16

Of course, two can play at the social media sharing ‘game’, so I made sure Steven got a good view of my last pitstop … the Bridge Drive Inn Ice Cream Shop! 🙂
BAM 30 Sep 2018 - Steven & Tom - 18

So ended our little ‘micro adventure’ Fatbike BAM Challenge response from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada – Eh! 🙂
BAM 30 Sep 2018 - Steven & Tom - 17

Thanks Steven for getting us out for a little BAM adventure!  Good fun! 🙂

Cheers, Fat Tom K

 

Fatbiking at BHPP on the Oak Ridge Trail

Found these nice pics recently of some fall fatbiking on the Oak Ridge MTB Trail (Winter Fatbike & Snowshoe only) at Birds Hill Prov Park.

Oak Ridge is a terrific MTB singletrack trail developed by the local MTB cycling community and maintained by local volunteers in cooperation with MB Parks.

Oak Ridge Trail Fatbike 25 Sep 2018 - 1

Oak Ridge Trail has it’s trail head at the Parking Lot shared with the Bur Oak Self-guiding Interpretive Paved Path.

Oak Ridge MTB - Fatbike Trail at BHPP - Map & TrailForks

In the past, we used to refer to Oak Ridge as Bur Oak; that is until it was recently named officially by MB Parks as Oak Ridge MTB Trail for use in the summer and in the winter for fatbikes.

Here’s the Oak Ridge Trailhead Sign and a handy Bike Repair Station (with tools and pump):
Oak Ridge MTB - Fatbike Trail at BHPP - Sign & Bike Repair Station

Here’s a close up of the Oak Ridge Trailhead Sign:Oak Ridge MTB - Fatbike Trail at BHPP - Sign 2

For winter fatbiking the “Minimum Tire Width 3.8 inches” and a recommended tire pressure of 8 PSI or lower to prevent rutting when the trail had been groomed by volunteers and Park staff.

Here’s the same sign with my addition of Red Letters and Highlights for emphasis:
Oak Ridge MTB - Fatbike Trail at BHPP - Sign 2 FB Notes

Btw, here’s the link to the TrailForks online info page for the Oak Ridge Trail:
https://www.trailforks.com/trails/oak-ridge-mountain-bike-trail/
Oak Ridge MTB - FB Trail Forks Map

Here’s handy satellite view of the Oak Ridge Trail:
Oak Ridge Fatbike Trail - TrailForks Satellite View

Have fun out there on the Oak Ridge Trail whether you are on a MTB, Plus Bike or a Fatbike.

***  BUT once the snow arrives and the trail is packed and groomed (by volunteers and park staff) … it’s time for Fatbikes Only.
Bur Oak Fatbiking 11 Dec 16 - 19

Screen Shot 2015-11-22 at 5.02.36 PM

Bur Oak Fatbiking 11 Dec 16 - 26

Bur Oak Fatbiking 11 Dec 16 - 39

Cheers, Fat Tom K

 

Fat Photo of the Month: Sunset Beach – Fatbike Dave’s Version

As were say good bye to summer holidays, we can look back to lots of adventures, full days of fun and some fine sunsets …

Fortunately for us our prolific beach rider Dave Cushnie has capture a sweet Sunset on The Beach with his Fatbike Version:

Dave Cushnie Fatbike - Lake Wpg 1 Sep 2018

Thanks again Dave for inspiring us to capture all the fun of fatbiking! 🙂

Cheers, Fat Tom K

Global Fat Bike Day: 2018 Banner Icon Released

So Fat-Bike.com has released the Banner Icon artwork for the upcoming 2018 Global Fat Bike Day, which will take place as it always does … the first Saturday in December:
December 1st, 2018:
https://fat-bike.com/2018/08/global-fat-bike-day-2018/

GFBD 2018 Logo 1

GFBD 2018 Logo 2

Looking forward to all the different Manitoba GFBD rides that will take place, like in previous years in places like Brandon Hills, RMNPark, Portage, Winnipeg, etc …

Cheers, Fat Tom K

Fat Video Time: Bivy A Month (BAM) Challenge – South Snowdon, UK

Check this Bivy A Month (BAM) video from South Snowdon, UK that I picked up from Fat-Bike.com’s MAM Challenge:
https://fat-bike.com/2018/07/bivvy-a-month-challenge-7/

Here’s a few photos from the Fat-Bike.com BAM post:

BAM - 1 Aug 2018 UK - 3

BAM - 1 Aug 2018 UK - 1

BAM - 1 Aug 2018 UK - 2

There you go, more motivation to get out and adventure with your fatbike!

Cheers, Fat Tom K