After a bunch of silly, but confidence-shattering crashes, I only got over the fear of going downhills when my neighbour Kev suggested I could use his old Salsa Mukluk frame.

We transferred components over from a range of old bikes we both had, and the result was this beast:

"Kev's Golden Fat Bike" on my first ride to horrible hill

We built it with Surly Bud on Surly Clown Shoe 100mm rim in the front, and Surly Nate on Surly Rolling Darryl 80mm rim in the back. The fork was a pretty knackered Rockshox Bluto 100mm.

The saddle is a Selle SMP Pro. It looks totally silly, but I grew to like it over time.

It had a 10-speed Shimano SLX drive train. I accidentally killed the derailleur in April and upgraded it to 11-speed SLX.

On this first ride, I went down "St-brice trail tech part", and you can hear that it was good.

Descent down a muddy, slightly techie local trail

Apologies for the mud, but the Bluto really doesn't have enough space for a Bud plus a mudguard...

Between March and May 2020, I rode this bike almost exclusively.

It was hard on the up hills, at least in the beginning.

"Kev's Golden Fat Bike" on the Blauen

Downhill was a breeze, though, and the Blauen Ridge Trail became my favourite part of our rides. It is rough and rocky, and so much more fun on a fat bike!

The bike was heavy, and the tires drag, but I still did a lot of PRs in the time, up and down hill.

In mid-April, I got cocky and crashed twice, once running into a log and decompressing the tire. So Kev took his Clown Shoe tire back, and I continued riding with a Bud on Rolling Darryl in the front.

Smaller tire in the front, but still fat

I had to decommission the bike on the 22nd of May, put all the components back on his smaller Mukluk frame, which he'll take to Sotland as a guest bike.

The guest bike. I built that!

Changing all the components over on my own was a great test for when the componentes arrive for the Taiga I'm building.

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