Sometimes things just fall into place. I never thought that I would actually buy a Fat Bike. I looked at them, I rode one, I thought they were kind of cool, but never thought that I would buy one. Well, during the winter, I did just that. I bought an On-One Fatty rolling chassis and built it using spare parts that I already had. So I ended up with a pretty high end bike on the cheap.
Then, while I was building the bike, I came across a posting on Facebook that mentioned Duro Tire had come out with the Duro Big D 26×4.0 fat bike tire. Well, being a Duro sponsored rider, I naturally wanted a set of these tires. After contacting Duro, I did manage to get a set of the Big D’s.
My first impression was that I liked them. The tread pattern wasn’t overly aggressive like some. Sure, that might not be great in deeper soft snow, but I thought that it would be better for an all around type of tire. I installed them, and right away went for a ride. And as luck would have it, it was snowing. So I was able to ride in about 3 inches of fresh snow on top of packed snow. The tires handled very good. I didn’t slip and slide all over the place, the tires held the ground pretty well.
The next weekend I went to Grafton State Park to ride the trails there. There are miles and miles of groomed snowmobile and cross country ski trails. The park is also very mountain bike friendly. I wasn’t sure what to expect riding on the varying trail/snow conditions that I new would be there. What I found was that the Duro Big D fat bike tires handled pretty good overall. Some of the trails had very soft, deep snow from the snowmobiles churning up the snow. That was difficult to ride and I slid a lot and couldn’t get much traction and I couldn’t really handle the bike well. But that is also because of the deep soft snow. Most of the riding was on trails that only had one or two snowmobile passes, snowshoe prints and ski print. In other words, packed powder. The Big D’s handled those trail conditions superbly.
I also had the opportunity to ride at Pineridge XC Ski Center after their XC season had ended. The snow conditions were mostly packed frozen granular with some spots of packed powder. I was pretty confident that my Duro Big D’s would handle nicely. I wasn’t wrong. With about 8 psi, the tires stuck to the trails. There was no slipping and sliding in the turns and there was no hesitation descending. Again, the Big D’s held the ground.
Overall, I think the Duro Big D fat bike tires are a solid entry into the marketplace. They are not designed for deeper/softer snow, but if you are riding packed, groomed trails and snowy dirt roads, this is a great tire to have. And outside of winter conditions, The Big D tires will be a lot of fun on my local singletrack.