My mother came from Colorado to visit Anchorage for the week of Fur Rondy and the start of the Iditarod dogsled race in March. Seeing the Iditarod has been a life-long dream of hers so I wanted to show her a good time, which in my book means fat bikes, cold weather, and good food.
She hasn't ridden a bike in over 10 years; fortunately riding a bike really is "like riding a bike."
Snow biking proved the perfectly suited to her level fitness, comfort, and sense of terror at traveling over 5 mph. Interestingly and somewhat ironically, she experienced and overcame the same hardships that professional blogger "DL" wined about in his heavily derided article on fat bikes.
Yes, fat bikes are slow, have somewhat cumbersome steering characteristics (compared road or mountain bikes) and yes you will sink into the powder if you go off the packed single-track, but they will also go where most people only dare to ski or snowshoe. Spending time on a fat bike will surely put a smile on your face and bring a unique sense of self satisfaction when grinding along at 2 mph through churned up snow while successfully navigating a 6" wide track on 4" tires.
The Anchorage bowl area offers miles of great trails.
No Alaska trip is complete without coming face-to-face with local wild-life, thankfully the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center is just an hour south of Anchorage along the Turnagain Arm and offers patrons up close encounters with brown bears, musk-ox, bison, caribou, lynx, and many other members of Alaskan wildlife, supports an important ecological cause, and is far less depressing than a typical zoo.
Beholding the beauty and natural wonder of these magnificent animals, then visiting an auction that celebrates and profits from the death and harvesting of animal furs was a true taste of the Alaskan frontier spirit.
Anchorage is thug-life: on the way to ride Powerline Pass trail: I can only assume this car was driven by drug runners, involved in a high speed chase and shoot out, ending with the car lit on fire to cover the evidence.
Denali:The Great One
Downtown Anchorage, Iditarod Ceremonial Start
This guy takes better photos than you.
Giving cookies to the mushers, official start.
Snow Sculpture competition.
Y'all come now back real soon Y'hear?!