SOC14: Up Close with the Rocky Mountain Blizzard Fat Bike

Rocky Mountain Blizzard fat bike rockshox BLuto (5)

Not to be left out of the RockShox Bluto suspension frenzy at SOC, Rocky Mountain had their reincarnation of the Blizzard on hand as well. Managing to keep their entry into the world of fat bikes surprisingly quiet leading up to the release, Rocky dove right in with an impressive ultra fat bike with a unique frame bag worthy of the Blizzard moniker.

Check out the details after the jump…

Rocky Mountain Blizzard fat bike rockshox BLuto (4)

Rocky Mountain Blizzard fat bike rockshox BLuto (8) Rocky Mountain Blizzard fat bike rockshox BLuto (7)

Rather than going straight to carbon, Rocky Mountain chose to use their FORM aluminum to keep the price down. The frame has some fantastic Totem pole inspired graphics that pay homage to the heritage and people of British Columbia.

Rocky Mountain Blizzard fat bike rockshox BLuto (6)

Often, fat bike riders prefer to place their gear in frame bags rather than on their backs. Because of this Rocky took the Blizzard design one step further and created a custom bag that bolts to the underside of the top tube instead of using velcro straps. There is still a single strap on the back of the bag that goes around the seat tube, but the rest of the bag is strap free. Sold separately and manufactured by Porcelain Rocket, the frame bag is a great design and leaves us wondering if we’ll see this on fat bikes from other brands in the future.

Rocky Mountain Blizzard fat bike rockshox BLuto (9)

Rocky Mountain Blizzard fat bike rockshox BLuto (10) Rocky Mountain Blizzard fat bike rockshox BLuto (1)

At 197×12 at the rear, the Blizzard frame uses a threaded thru axle to provide rear end stiffness and the clearance for up to 5″ tires. Up front there is a low direct mount front derailleur mount which will make adding a front derailleur a breeze. On the few RockShox Blutos currently in the world, each seems to have custom accents to match the builder’s bikes. Rocky Mountain gets a custom touch with a Maple leaf on the Bluto monster.

Considering it is their first attempt at a fat bike, the Rocky Mountain Blizzard looks really good. If the price is reasonable, this could be the affordable option to Borealis’ impressive Echo.

 bikes.com

Comments

Fattylocks - 05/01/14 - 1:32pm

Can some one tell me again ( I’m kind of slow ) why fat bikes need a suspension fork?

brian - 05/01/14 - 1:43pm

because big fat tires are not an apples-to-apples replacement for suspension.

Andy - 05/01/14 - 1:52pm

Well, two reasons: 1 – it looks cooler, and 2 – it, uh, gives more cush than the monster, cushy tires…scratch that, the real 2 is because it makes it more appealing (i.e. it looks cooler). :D

Mike - 05/01/14 - 2:11pm

Fat tires are bouncy like a spring not to much rebound dampening. I find that if I take a bump while cornering I feel the feel the shock keeps that big sexy tire on the ground so I keep turning and don’t skitch out. And um well it just looks cool.

Psi Squared - 05/01/14 - 2:32pm

Because perhaps the fat bike tires don’t provide adequate suspension in all situations? Look at a fat tire, and you might notice that they have limited “travel”.

Fatguy - 05/01/14 - 2:45pm

Fat bike suspension, front only or full suspension, is so you can control the rebound. When you compress the tires on a “rigid” fat bike they rebound fully and you have no control over this rebound. With more riders realizing how fun fat tires are to ride off the snow it was the logical next step.

Mindless - 05/01/14 - 2:58pm

Suspension fork has damping. Tires do not. For summer riding is it quite noticeable if you pick up a bit of speed. If you actually tried, you would not be asking. For winter riding you will be better putting a rigid fork in.

ac - 05/01/14 - 6:39pm

Having actually ridden said fork on snowy singletrack, I’ll tell you exactly why: as you get a rigid fork up to speed, it starts to “basketball” it’s way down the trail, and will eventually bounce you clear off, forcing you to slow down. The fork completely erased that trait. Hugely noticeable on downhill whoops created by sleds (snowmachine, ski-doo eh).

Fattylocks - 05/01/14 - 11:41pm

I see. So then you can run more air pressure in the front tire, and probably get away with a skinnier and lighter tire.

wheel-addict - 05/02/14 - 9:15am

@Fattylocks: no, as everybody above stated, a suspension fork gives critical rebound damping to the bike. Nothing to do with wanting to running skinnier/lighter tires. You still want the widest possible tires for good flotation on snow and sand. I think you’re being intentionally obtuse here. BTW, I have many hundreds of miles of sandy/wash jeep trails right behind my house in Nevada that are only possible to ride with a fat bike. Fat bikes are not just a gimmick/fad, they are true “go everywhere” bikes.

Rad looking bike and finally a big bike company that did a fat bike “right” the first time by including front/rear thru-axles, 190mm rear and clearance for largest fat tires. Don’t understand why many others are releasing fat bikes that are all ready two years or more out of date.

Fattylocks - 05/02/14 - 11:21am

@wheel-addict: I’m not bashing fat bikes and agree that they are not going away or a fad.
Last fall I was ready to pull the trigger on a fat and test rode three bikes. A Pugsley with 3.7 tires, a 907 with wider tires and a Moolander with maybe 4.8 tires on it. I felt like I was test riding different tires rather than different frames. No doubt or at least my thought was the Moonlander would be best in the snow. I liked the Pugs best , probably cause it felt most like a regular 26″ mountain bike.
At that time suspension forks were not even a rumor and the upgrade was a carbon fork.
This is last fall. Also at that time the rear hub spacing was all over the place and 190 was kind of new. Now I see this Rocky is 197 mm. Kind of confusing and hate to buy something that is allready out of date or soon to be old news .

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