Sunday, December 22, 2013

Lenz Sport Skibikes will be at the 2014 SIA in Denver, Colorado

by G. Kunkel

Now a real reason to attend the SnowSports Industries of  America Snowshow (SIA) at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, CO.  Lenz Sport will have a skibike booth displaying their products for the 2014 show.

SIA is the largest snowsport trade convention in the USA.  Retail buyers meet with industry suppliers and place their orders for next season.  If one wants to be taken seriously, your company has to attend.

This years convention is being held January 30 - February 2, 2014 at the CCC.  The On-Snow show will be held at Copper Mountain this year.  Since Copper doesn't allow skibikes, you'll only be able to test skis and snowboards there.

Attendance to both shows is restricted to industry professionals.  It is closed to the general public.  PSIA, AASI, and Ski Patrol members can attend for a modest fee.  If one really wants to attend, hit up your industry contacts for credentials.

An added bonus - one can buy a special SIA Epic Pass from Vail Resorts, Inc. for a very attractive price.  The pass is valid after SIA until the end of the season at any ski resort managed by VRI.  That includes Colorado, California, Michigan, Utah, etc.   It's also good for five days at a number of resorts in Europe.

SIA is a great way to make industry connections or keep in contact.  The first SIA I went to I thought I wouldn't know anybody there.  I was wrong.   I saw a number of people I knew and established new contacts.

Hope to see you at SIA this year.   And don't forget to stop by the Lenz Sport Skibikes booth.  Find it using the handy dandy SIA app.



© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Crested Butte is now skibike friendly - sort of

by G. Kunkel

Peg skibikes and skibobs are now welcome to ride the slopes at Crested Butte Mountain Resort.  The ropes came down in April 2013.

While both types are allowed, skibikes are limited to specific terrain.  Bikes are not permitted on any black trail, double-black trail, or in the terrain park.  In addition riders must use a lanyard leash while on the chair lift and while skibiking on-slope.

 Type I (skibobs) and Type II (peg) style skibikes must have a license to ride at Crested Butte.  First timers must take a lesson to educate themselves on proper chair lift loading and unloading procedures.  The lesson lasts two hours and includes full day snowbike rental.

After the lesson, skibikers are issued a non-expiring, non-transferable license at the season pass office.  Rentals are available for $45/day for licensed holders.

Permitted areas and area skibike regulations are listed at http://www.skicb.com/lessons-rentals/ski-ride-school/snow-bike

Hopefully the terrain restrictions will end sooner rather than later.   Especially the black rated terrain.  Many resorts mistakenly believe skibikers cannot handle it properly.

Experienced freestyle skibikers have no problem riding blacks, moguls, and even the halfpipe.  Just talk to the guys at Silverton Mountain - they are still in awe of Cliff Pinto's helicopter drop on his bike last season.  He has permission to ride their mountain anytime.

I'll try to check it out this season but gotta say the totally unrestricted terrain at Vail, Telluride and Snowmass keep me drooling.

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Friday, December 6, 2013

Changes to ski bike lessons at Winter Park Resort for 2013 - 2014 season

by G. Kunkel

There will be a few tweaks to skibike lessons at Winter Park Resort this ski season.

In order to improve the guest experience, lessons will now be offered once per day.  They will now start at 11:45 to give participants time to drop off family members at their lessons and still have time to get fitted for snowboard boots.  Class ends at 2:45.

The first time lesson will include a full day all-access lift ticket, full day skibike rental, and the lesson.  One must still pass all skills requirements to have the bike after the lesson.  The lesson time is increasing to 3 hours instead of 2.5 hours.

Lessons are group lessons.  Private lessons are available if one needs a different time schedule.  Please call the Private Lesson Center to arrange your private and request a specific skibike instructor.

Full and half day Lenz Sport skibike rentals are still available.  Reservations are highly recommended especially during busy holiday periods.  As the sport has become more popular, bikes are quickly rented out.  Reservations can be made online or by phone.

Read more about skibike lessons, daytime tours, and night skibike tours at http://www.winterparkresort.com/plan-your-trip/lessons/ski-bikes-and-night-bikes.aspx

 © 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Thursday, December 5, 2013

EpicSkibike.com website now live

by G. Kunkel

The website is not complete by any means but I have skibike leashes, handlebar covers, and  repair services available for purchase at Epic Skibike Accessories.  If you don't see something you need - inquiries are welcome,

My leashes come in two flavors - on slope use only and slope/chairlift use.   The chairlift one is constructed from climb-spec webbing and carabiner.  I've drop tested the final product using 35 lbs. to simulate a bike drop from a chairlift.  I hate leashes but some ski joints require them.

The on-slope leash can also be used as a carrying strap from the parking lot.  Carrying that cold metal frame from the parking lot can be exhausting.  No, I don't like carrying my bike upside down when transporting it.  Gets too awkward for me if I suddenly have to put it down or slip and fall.

I also make custom handlebar covers.   I noticed covers getting torn up in the Winter Park Resort skibike fleet so I thought there might be a need.  I made a black/white checkerboard cover for my Launch and I love it.  Women love accessorizing.

Replacement leashes for skibob skis are available.  The buckles on the commercial ones are pretty crappy and break.  I can make custom ones using the webbing of your choice.   Sold in pairs only.

My products are for the USA market.  International shipping gets pretty expensive.  If you are willing to pay the shipping, customs, VAT, we can talk.

I'm taking payments through PayPal - not that I like it but it is a way to accept credit cards.  PayPal account is not required to use the service.  I will only ship to the registered PayPal address.

Check it out at https://www.epicskibike.com/

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Need to do some site maintenance

by G. Kunkel

I need to update some items on the blog as some information is now inaccurate. Vail Resorts is now allowing ski bikes in the terrain park at Vail. The policy the last month of the 2012-13 season was "allowed but not recommended in the parks". I need to get the official policy updates and post them.

Anyways, I expect that means skibikes are now allowed in all Vail Resorts ski area terrain parks. I still don't know about the newly acquired resorts by Vail either. They might be allowed but who knows. I need to track down that information too.

 I'm also going to be branching out and producing skibike accessories with my newly acquired industrial sewing machine. I'll eventually have available products posted on my new website at epicskibike.com   It will include things such as replacement handlebar covers, transport gear, leashes,  and skibike specific ski covers.

I am open to producing items for other skibike manufacturers.  Cost will depend upon materials and time to produce.  My labor cost is the sewing industry standard of $25/hour.

My bike is currently hanging from my garage ceiling.  Here's hoping your skibike is properly stored away as well.



© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Winter Park Resort end of season update

by G. Kunkel

Just a few changes for skibike lessons and rentals for the end of the ski season.

West Portal rentals is now shut down for the season.  Lessons and rentals can still be purchased over at Village Rentals next to the Zephyr Express chairlift.   Lessons still meet over at West Portal Rentals in front of the tune repair shop.  Look for the bike rack outside.


Lessons continue through April 14, 2013.  The skibike rental fleet will be severely reduced after this date.


If you are interested in buying one of the rental fleet bikes, contact Devin Lenz at Lenz Sport Bicycles.  He'll let you know what is available and price.  He can ship bikes to almost anywhere.

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Aspen Snowmass

by G. Kunkel

There's nothing like skibiking at Snowmass on a powder day!  I first experienced Snowmass in 1989 on a snowboard, gotta say this is even better.

I packed up the bike in the back of the pickup and headed west last Friday morning and arrived in Snowmass around 11:00 a.m.  They had just received 11 inches of fresh powder so the slopes were calling my name.

Skibike Snowmass

Bikes are not allowed on the Snowmass Village shuttles or the RFTA buses so I had a bit of a dilemma.   I ended up locking the bike to the railing in front of the Treehouse base area and drove back down to the Rodeo Lot free parking.  It was then a 10 minute shuttle ride back up to the ski area.

After turning in my Real Deal vouchers, they issued me a Aspen/Snowmass RFID card upon paying a $5 deposit.   I stuck it in an upper jacket pocket and I was set for three days of lift tickets.   They don't use human ticket scanners there anymore, you have to go through a gate that scans the card and it lets you in.

Plastic RFID lift ticket card

The Elk Camp area was first on my agenda.  It's always fun on a powder day.  I got in the Elk Camp Gondola line and nobody shooed me out.   The lifties loaded it inside the gondola car for me and then enjoyed a 15 minute ride to the top.  I jumped out and then loaded on the Elk Camp Lift.

At the top I headed down the slope under the lift.  Pure untracked powder bliss.  Faceshots even.   I was in pure heaven.  No people on the slope either.   Lots of cheering from the lift above.

I blew through hero moguls, jumps, and other awesomeness.   Didn't get any of those "You can only take those on green or blue runs"  questions back at the bottom of the Elk Camp Lift.

It was so much fun, I did it a few more times.  When people starting stealing my powder, I moved over to The Burn.

If you only have a short time to skibike at Snowmass, head for the Burn.  It's terrain I've been dying to try on a bike for the past two seasons.  It was everything I expected it to be.  Pure awesomeness!

Trees, deep powder, jumps, and drops can all be found up there.   It got pretty foggy up there and the snow was coming down hard so I headed down to lower slopes.

Ran into several friends there.   The NASTAR National Championships were being held.  I went and said "hello" to my racing friends, a few former U.S. Olympians (pacesetters), and Franz 'Fuxi' Fuchsburger.  Franz had his trailer stolen back in January and I was curious if he had gotten it back.

It was then time for some freestyle.  I tried out the 12 foot halfpipe and the rollers near the base area.  One kid was yelling for me to do a backflip.   I cleared the lip but that was it.  Total fun.   The rollers were just plain fun too.  Eight quick jumps in succession.

I then repeated the above for the next two days.

The skibike beta on Snowmass:

Chairlift:

Ride any lift you want.  Peggers have plenty of room in the gondola.  Use a leash on the lifts.

Vibe:

Lots of curious people.  Many asked where to rent one or get lessons.  No haters.  Numerous employees asking where to buy one.

Terrain:

Ride anything that looks fun.  I recommend Elk Camp, The Burn, and Sam's Knob.  The place is huge and I didn't get up to Hanging Valley or The Cirque.  The Lowdown Park is a great beginner park.

License:

None required.

Bike types allowed:

Not sure.  I wouldn't bring anything too ghetto.   Most of the lifties either drooled over the bike and asked questions or stood back and observed to make sure you knew how to load.

Courtesy tips:

Don't load on chairs with little kids.   You can't put the bar down and there are anxious parents.   Tell adults too - there are nervous adults that like the bar down too.

Overnight storage:

Bikes aren't allowed on any available public transport.  Unless you like paying $20/day for the parking garage you are screwed.  The garage was full for the weekend too.

The Aspen SkiCo Overnight Ski Storage Rack people + Snowmass Mall Guest Services worked out a solution.  SkiCo Snowmass Mall Pavillion Guest Services let me store the bike overnight behind the desk.  The Pavillion is totally locked up overnight.  I paid $7/night + tips.

Total pain in the kester:

The gates for the lifts are a pain.  It's hard to get the bike through before the metal bar swings around.  It can snag the bike and trap it.  You're then jammed in the gate.  The lifties will come and help you get unstuck.  Some gates are narrower than others.

In all, Snowmass is a fantastic place to ride.  Do it!

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Saturday, March 16, 2013

British introduction to skibobs

by G. Kunkel

A well-rounded presentation on skibob skibikes from across the pond.

It covers a bit of history and current useage in Europe.  Lifties use them for work while recreational types like to race them.  Combined with the foot skis, one can ride them really fast.

The suspension systems make the bikes really stable at high speeds.  Former ski racers find they can still get that adrenaline rush even after career ending injuries.  Powder face shots can still be enjoyed too.

They can be enjoyed by all members of the family in a group tour.



© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Friday, March 15, 2013

PSIA - Rocky Mountain Division - AASI Skibike Certification

by G. Kunkel

In the USA, professional ski and snowboard instruction certification is obtained through the nine divisional offices of the Professional Ski Instructors of America (PSIA) and American Association of Snowboard Instructors (AASI).  If one wants to have at least a meager income from instruction, you'll need to have a certification.

PSIA-AASI currently certifies instructors in alpine skiing, telemark, cross country, snowboarding, adaptive, freestyle, and children.  None of the divisional offices currently have a certification program for skibikes.  This includes Rocky Mountain PSIA-AASI that covers Colorado, Wyoming, New Mexico, Arizona, Texas, Nebraska, Kansas, and Oklahoma.

I stopped by the National office in Lakewood, Colorado last fall for guidance from a former supervisor who now works there.  The bottom line: this is something that will have to be approached at the divisional level not the national.  In addition, a uniform teaching system that will work for both styles of bikes (peg and skibob) is the only practice that will be accepted by the national PSIA office.

As there are now more Colorado ski resorts that allow bikes than ban them, it's something that needs to be addressed.  Especially for peggers - they require a more technical lesson.  The demand for lessons for both skibobs and pegs is increasing though.

A great way to get the sport introduced to non-adaptive instructors in the Rocky Mountain Division are through cross-over training events such as Vail Spring Fling. Members can learn a new sport and fulfill their education credit requirements.

While I was over at Steamboat on Tuesday, I decided to drop in on the divisional headquarters in Steamboat Springs.  As luck would have it, I was able to speak with Dana Forbes the Executive Director.  As it turns out, we know a mutual number of people within PSIA and the ski industry.

The current state of skibiking within Colorado and the teaching program at Winter Park were discussed.     I explained why a cross-discipline clinic at Vail Spring Fling would be a great introduction for non-adaptive instructors.  She agreed.

I then went on to address the lack of a certification program for bikes and the lack of a recognized teaching system for peggers.  Skibobs have somewhat of a system through Adaptive.  With the demand for pegger lessons increasing, perhaps this should be addressed?

Dana mentioned that skibikes were discussed two years ago.  After consulting with the National PSIA Office, they found that their insurance policy coverage did not extend to bikes.  Without insurance coverage, they could not move forward.

As an active dues paying member of Rocky Mountain PSIA-AASI  I'd like to see this sport take off in a responsible manner with a measure of respectability.  Snowboarding suffered early on before being recognized as a separate discipline altogether.

After a quick and productive discussion, there may or may not be some progress.  Dana said she would talk to National and see if the insurance issue had been worked out and then get back to me.

So, those of you wanting a Cert for bikes, insurance is the hold back.  If enough active members express interest, it may hurry up the process.  We all remember when you had to have a snowboard license to ride at ski resorts.

Want to have a voice?  Join PSIA.  Dues are $110 annually with mandatory continuing education.  You'll learn more about snowslding sports than you ever thought possible.  My snowboarding skills improved vastly after starting down the training road.

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Update to Steamboat skibike policies 2012-13 season

Great news!  There are new skibiker policies in place for Steamboat Ski Resort.

And they are friendlier.

Licenses

Licenses are no longer required at Steamboat.  Neither are checkout rides with Ski Patrol for peggers. They did a review on bikes and concluded there were no issues.  I went straight to the lift on Tuesday.

Lessons and rentals

Lessons are still available through Ski School.  Several places rent Brenters and Stalmach's right at the base area.

Brenter C4 and Stalmach Rocky Berg's are available through ski school.  Only skibobs are available commercially for rent.  Josh in Steamboat does have 7 Lenz Sport Brawlers that he rents.

Chairlifts

Bikes are allowed in the gondola.  They'll even load it inside for you.  Plenty of room for a pegger to fit inside.

Unknown

Still don't know if homemade or conversion kit bikes are allowed.  Probably not.  They aren't allowed at Winter Park and both resorts are operated by Intrawest.

I rode around the Wally World area on Tuesday.  Lots of curious people and no negative comments.  Downhill mountain bikers and instructors seemed the most interested.

I've skied and snowboarded at Steamboat since the late 1980's.  I had blast on the bike there.  It's a whole new mountain.

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

U.S. Forest Service Policy attacks adaptive skibikers

Very bad news.  The U.S. Forest Service adopted a new anti-skibike policy in the fall of 2012.

I had a very brief conversation with Beth Fox the Operations Manager of the National Sports Center for the Disabled (NSCD) on Sunday.  During the discussion, she mentioned that the U.S. Forest Service instituted a new policy.

Those who are adaptive skibikers could have issues in the future.

It seems that the new USFS policy is that ski areas no longer have to recognize skibikes as an adaptive device.  This is a giant leap backwards for all skibikers.

This means that ski areas no longer have to permit bikers under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).   Adaptive uses of bikes has long been the foot in the door for everyone.

NSCD has used skibobs in their programs for many years.  They've allowed those with disabilities to safely enjoy the ski slopes.

I don't think Winter Park will change their policies anytime soon due to the current COO's three decades of volunteering with NSCD.

What's driving this change?  I can only speculate.  I think it is being driven by the insurance companies that underwrite policies for the ski resorts.

I really think it's terrible that the Forest Service wants to discriminate against a portion of the American disabled community.

Those with diseases and injuries do not always need to use a sit-ski.   Many battle-injured American service members and veterans can enjoy the slopes due to skibikes.

It's really just a terrible new policy.  Read the USDA - USFS Accessibility Guidebook for Ski Areas Operating on Public Lands revised October 2012 at  http://www.fs.fed.us/recreation/programs/accessibility/accessibility_guidebook_ski_areas_2012.pdf.

If you agree, contact your Senators and Members of Congress.  Don't let the U.S. Forest Service discriminate against the disabled.

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Monday, March 11, 2013

Colorado ski bike regulations

Panoramic Express at Winter Park Resort
Unfortunately, there are no uniform rules or policies for skibikes at Colorado ski resorts.  The U.S. Forest Service lets the individual areas determine their policies.

There are known areas with policy and safety regulation variability.

Permitted

Not every Colorado ski area allows skibiking.  All destination and large Colorado ski resorts permit them.  Copper Mountain is the only large ski area that prohibits them (peggers).

Leash

Not every ski area requires them.  When they are required, it can vary from lift only to wearing one at all times.  Colorado law does require everyone to 'use a device to help prevent runaway equipment'.  Since most ski bike designs don't runaway without a rider, it's a gray area.

Skibike license

Not every area requires one to ride.  All areas require riders to follow the Responsibility Code which states 'Always stay in control, and be able to stop or avoid others'.  Some Colorado ski areas require a license be shown when boarding any chairlift.   Most areas only require them when renting a skibike.

Terrain parks

Some ski areas in Colorado prohibit skibikes in terrain parks due to risk assessment reviews.  Vail Resorts (Keystone, Breckenridge, Vail, Beaver Creek), Snowmass, Durango Mountain Resort, A-Basin, and Telluride allow them in their terrain parks.

Chairlifts

Ski areas may prohibit the use of certain lifts.  These tend to be fixed-grip lifts which can be tricky to exit for peg bikers.  Peggers are regarded as 'foot traffic' by the Colorado Tramway Board.  If one uses foot skis on the lift, one may be able to use these lifts.

Terrain

Terrain may be prohibited due to access problems.  Not all resorts can accommodate skibikes on their equipment.  For example, Highlands Bowl in Aspen is prohibited as they don't have a way to carry the bikes out of there.  If one is uncertain, ask someone.  Montezuma Bowl at A-Basin is off-limits for some mysterious reason.

Homemade or Conversion kit

Due to liability insurance issues, homebuilt or conversion kit ski bikes are banned from most Colorado ski areas.  Those built using manufactured conversion kits are welcome at a few small ski areas.

Rentals and lessons

If you want to rent a skibike, most Colorado ski areas limit their risk by requiring lessons before one can rent.  There are enough out-of-control skiers and snowboarders already on the hill.  Too bad they don't require a ski license or snowboard license to rent or own that equipment.

If one plans to bike in Colorado, contact the resort before visiting to get their regulations.  It limits disappointment.

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Sunday, March 10, 2013

What is the difference between a Type 1 and Type 2 ski bike?

Everything has to have a label to work in a computer system.  So five season ago Winter Park Resort picked a naming system for the two types of skibikes used at the ski resort.

Type 1 skibikes are skibobs that are typically used with foot skis.  One wears ski boots to attach the skis  to.   The rider sits down on a seat.  They have a lower center of gravity and four points of contact with the snow.

Type 1 skibike aka skibob
Type 2 are peg style skibikes - no foot skis are used.  Riders wear snowboard boots and stand on pegs attached to the bike frame.  They have a higher center of gravity and only two points of contact with the  snow.

Type 2 skibike aka peg
Skibobs are easy to learn.  Pegs typically take more time to learn and require more balance.

Want a short learning curve and almost guaranteed success learning to ride?  Choose a skibob.

Have balance issues, un-athletic, or find a downhill mountain bike style more appealing - choose a pegger.

There's different strokes for different folks.  Choose your style of skibiking.

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Highlights from the 2013 Vail Winter Mountain Games

And skibikes were representing in the dual slalom bike course.  Just a demo event though.

Lenz Sport rider Jamis Stiber competed in the official Men's Dual Slalom Course event and took second place.  Petr Hanak from Winter Park, Colorado took first place.

Some official video's from the events.

Recap of all the events:


Recap of the snowbike dual slalom race:


© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Winter Park Resort TV Commercial

What's playing on the local cable TV channel.



There are also some independent reviews out there of people's skibike lesson experiences at Winter Park.

One's that I could find:

Skibiking at Winter Park Is More Than Just Biking On Skis

Something New: Skibiking at Winter Park

Lessons are the way to go with any new activity.  Judge for yourself.  Come take a skibike lesson at Winter Park.

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Friday, March 8, 2013

Skibob video from 1956

Just found this old skibob video with footage from Bavaria in Germany.  It's pretty funny.

Equipment has come a long way since then.  Much better suspension systems and design.  No need for Superman muscles anymore.

These guys are the original peggers too!



© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Skibike Powder Day at Vail

The video doesn't lie.  Colorado has gotten the snow goods lately.  And it's been fantastic!

Todd Harper rode a skibike around Vail mountain and took footage of his adventures.  He then edited together this video.

I'm jealous.


Powder Day at Vail on Lenz Sport from T Harper on Vimeo.


© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Ski bike and skibob riding terrain

by G. Kunkel

Skibikes can be ridden on almost any type of slope skiers or snowboarders use.  Don't laugh.  I'm often approached by unknowledgeable people on the slopes or in the lift line and told "those can only be ridden on green and blue runs, right?".

There are shocked looks and comments when I say some of my favorite terrain are the bumps or trees.  It never even crossed their mind that bikes could be ridden on difficult or black terrain.

To use more advanced terrain, one does need the proper equipment and riding techniques.  Determine if the bike construction is built to withstand the stresses of the desired terrain and if one has the proper riding skills for the terrain.

Having a bike with a full-suspension system is going to give the smoothest ride.  Having a manufactured bike with vetted construction and welds is going to be the safest.  You don't want the bike to explode on impact off a jump.

Having advanced riding skills will be necessary for black slopes and freestyle riding.  Bumps require short radius dynamic turns and a low edge angle.  Terrain park riding tricks are best practiced with foam pits before trying them on-snow.

Skibike lessons from PSIA-AASI trained instructors are another source of knowledge.  Certified instructors spend hundreds of hours training and thousands of dollars out of their own pocket to get their certifications.  While there is currently no PSIA "skibike" certification, the movement analysis and teaching techniques are the same as for skiing and snowboarding.

Once you have the advanced riding skills, help the sport out by demonstrating good riding technique in visible areas.  Skillfully riding in a pack of bikers down a bump run underneath a chairlift generates respect and knowledge to the general public.  It also generates lessons and rentals which grows the sport.

On that note, I'd never noticed skibobbers using terrain park features other than jumps.  Seems bobbers like the adventure too.

Here's a video by Front Range Snowbiking showing skibobs using terrain park features.



© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Basic skibob instructional video featuring Stalmach Group bikes

I ran into Patrick Neelan on Sunday at Winter Park.  I took him up on his offer to demo some of the skibobs that Snow Fun Bikes had brought over from Steamboat Springs.  More on that in future posts.

While on the chairlift, Patrick mentioned he had edited his instructional video he filmed at Sipapu Ski Area in New Mexico, USA.

In the video, Patrick demonstates how to put on the foot skis, skate, load and unload from the chairlift, and basic riding techique on the slopes.

The video also features four time World Champion Austrian skibobber/Stalmach Group Founder Jacek Stalmach riding the bumps and groomers at Aspen/Snowmass.  Jacek flew over last spring on a USA-wide business trip promoting skibobbing to resorts and PSIA.  Vail Resorts, Inc. ski areas are now open to skibikers due in part to his efforts.

One can spot several models of Stalmach Group skibobs being ridden throughout the video.

It was shot on location at Sipapu, and Aspen/Snowmass in Colorado.



© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Where to buy Brenter Snowbike parts in the USA


by G. Kunkel

If one owns a Brenter skibob, sooner or later you'll need to purchase replacement parts for it.  Finding new and used parts from a supplier can be rather difficult in the United States.

One doesn't have to order them from Europe anymore.   Snow Fun Bikes in Steamboat Springs, Colorado is an authorized Brenter Snowbike Distributor in North America.

I ran into Ricky and Kay Brooks, the owners of SnowFunBikes.com, at their demo booth at Winter Park Resort on Sunday.  I had a chance to find out more information about their skibike business.

They keep OEM Brenter replacement parts in stock at their warehouse.  There are no long waits from drop shipping direct from the manufacturer.  They ship parts the same day they get the order.

They'll ship parts to anywhere in the USA and Canada.  They'll even ship the used skibobs they have in stock to anywhere in the world.

Ricky and Kay are incredibly friendly and great people persons.  If you have any questions or need help with your skibob needs, they are happy to help.

If you are looking to buy a skibob, Snow Fun Bikes has new and used Brenter and Stalmach skibobs for sale.  They are also the authorized Stalmach Distributor in North America.  If you haven't ridden a Stalmach before, you're in for a real treat.

Need a skibike rental to ride on the slopes of Steamboat?  Ricky and Kay can help you there too.  Call them and find out what they currently have available.

Website:  http://www.snowfunbikes.com/index.php

Phone:  970-736-8366

Update: If you need replacement footski leashes, ski covers, or carrying bag repair, head on over to the EpicSkibike.com website.  They offer those and other skbike parts.  Broken zipper? Get that fixed too.

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Where to rent a ski bike in Telluride Colorado

Lenz Sport skibike at Telluride
Telluride Ski Resort is a skibike friendly place in southwest Colorado.  Bikes are permitted on all its slopes, including the terrain park.

Ones does need to have a ski bike license to ride their lifts.   The lifties don't seen to check for them though.  They're usually more interested in checking out your ride.

Brenter snowbikes are available for rent at Eco Adventures in Mountain Village.  Lessons are available as well.  License required for rental.  No peggers available.

Lessons are $85 and include a 2 hour lesson, skibike rental for the day, and a certification card.  Skibob rental is available to licensed skibikers for $45/day.  Lift tickets are not included.

They are located in the Franz Klammer Breezeway adjacent to the Conference Center.

They are open daily from 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.  Phone 970.728.7300.  Email ecoadventures@tellurideskiresort.com

More information at http://tellurideskiresort.com/TellSki/info/eco-snowshoeing.aspx

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Let the kid's join in the fun too

Skibikes aren't just for adults.  There are inexpensive kids conversion kit models available on the market too.

I didn't know about them until a number of parents mentioned them on an internet forum.  They are a great way to have kids develop balance on snow with a kid-size bike.  It's specifically designed for children from 18 months to 5 years.

Strider ST3 Skibike


The Strider ST3 Skibike consists of a metal frame with integrated footrests.  Plastic wheels with foam tires are attached to the frame.  Velcro the lightweight plastic skis on and it's ready for some snow.


2012 Bike Specifications:


Frame:  Custom welded, thin-gauge steel alloy with integrated footrests 
Fork:  Welded steel, 70 degree headtube angle 
Paint:  Certified compliant with California Proposition 65 lead standards 
Tires:   All terrain, puncture-proof, molded foam... no flats, ever! 
Wheels:  Molded plastic with sealed bearings riding on steel axles 
Saddle:  Injection molded ergonomic plastic shell with padded vinyl cover 
Seatpost:  7/8” dia., chrome plated steel, 70 degree seattube angle 
Handlebars:  7/8” dia., one piece custom welded steel with zero reach stem 
Assembled Weight:  6.4 lbs. without optional brake 
Seat height:  Adjustable from 11” to 16” (up to 19” with optional XL Seatpost and Saddle) 
Handlebar height:  Adjustable from 20” to 22 
Handlebar width: 15” 
Wheelbase:  22” 
Overall length:  33” 
Optional brake:  Welded steel, foot operated friction type with polyurethane spring 

The bikes are perfect for the community sledding hill or the backyard.  They aren't legal to ride at ski resorts since they don't have metal edges.



The Strider isn't just for winter either. Pull the skis off in summer and one has an introductory BMX bike for youngsters.



A complete winter Strider setup can be purchased from SkiBikeFun.com for only $179.  That includes shipping.

Current frame choices are blue and red.  Order at http://www.skibikefun.com/STRSNOBK001.htm

© 2012 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Ski bike requirements at Arapahoe Basin

I called Alan Henceroth, the COO and General Manager of A Basin, in August 2012 to try to get their skibike rules, regulations, and requirements at the ski area.

During the phone conversation, I discovered that I was wrong about some of their policies.  Nothing like getting the rules direct from the big cheese.

I can't say I was entirely happy with my findings but what follows is some of what I learned:

Lenz Sport Launch at Arapahoe Basin Ski Area
Skibikes are restricted to the front-side of A-Basin.  Montezuma Bowl is prohibited terrain. (Alan didn't get upset when I admitted I may have strayed down there on a bike.)

Bikes are only permitted on three of the the front-side chairlifts.  No getting on the Pali chair.

Leashes are required while riding the chairlifts.  This is strictly enforced.  Nothing about wearing them on the slopes was mentioned.

Peggers and skibobbers are welcome.

Everyone is welcome to use the features in the terrain parks.

It's okay to ask the lifties to slow the down the fixed-grip lifts so you can safely exit the chairlift at the top.  Some lifties will ask you if you want it slowed as you approach.  A quick pushing down motion signal with your hand to the liftie in the booth will work.

Conversion kit and homemade bikes are not expressly prohibited.  Plenty of homemades have shown up and they haven't run them off.

There are no bike rentals or lessons available at the ski area.

Alan mentioned that they once offered skibob lessons and rentals a long time ago.  There was no demand so they got rid of them.

I don't know of any prohibited skibike designs.  They will let you know if they don't like what you brought.

There was some skepticism expressed when I mentioned that the sport was experiencing increased participation and growth.   My own casual observations at Winter Park from 5 years ago to today show a definitive trend.  Hard data from lessons and rentals back me up.

All in all, A-Basin is a pretty ski bike friendly joint.  Respect their rules and use common sense.  Don't be one of those skibikers that gets them banned like at Copper Mountain.

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Sunday, February 17, 2013

February 2013 Vail Skibike Video with Devin Lenz & Crew

Todd shot video of our first day skibiking on Vail mountain last Sunday.  Highlights include China Bowl and the first ever skibike  racing in the Vail Winter Mountain Games.

In the video, Devin is wearing a greenish coat/black pants, Aaron is wearing a yellow/greenish jacket with blue pants, and I'm wearing the tan coat with yellow pants.  Todd is wearing the striped coat and was shooting from a mount on the front of his bike.

At the beginning of the video, we're at the Two Elks area getting ready to drop into China Bowl.  Later  footage shows the terrain at the bottom of the bowl.

At Gold Peak, where the competition events were held, it shows the bikes being carried to the top of the race course with snowmobiles.  Devin and Aaron then square off against each other.  If one looks closely, you can spot Devin hucking the course jump.  Devin ended up smoking his nephew.

I have to think that Todd is in love with the Lenz Sport Launch that Devin left with him.   There's footage in there from this past week with the bike in deep freshies with falling snow coming down around it.

If you are in the Vail area and want to catch up with Todd, shoot me a message or contact him through this video.  He's happy to tell you all about the bike.  I have a feeling he's currently surrounded by eager Vail Ski Patrollers.

Thanks again to Todd, Vail Resorts, and the Vail Valley Foundation for the fun day.


Skibiking with Devin Lenz on Vail Mountain from T Harper on Vimeo.


© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Thursday, February 14, 2013

2013 Durango Skibike Festival starts tomorrow

 The largest ski bike festival in Colorado if not the USA starts tomorrow.  There will be events and socials held throughout the weekend of February 15 - 17, 2013.

There will be free demos and displays from a variety of manufacturers and companies.  If there is a skibike model you've always wanted to demo, this is the time.

Festival participants will need to purchase lift tickets to ride the chairlifts.  Discounted tickets will be available only to registered participants.  ASA members receive additional discounts.


All bikers will need to show a skibike license to board any DMR lift.  They will honor a license/certification obtained at other ski resorts.  So bring it if you have one.  If you don't have a license, there will be checkout rides each morning from 8:30 - 9:00 a.m.

Hanging out during the festival
Those wanting to learn to ride can take a lesson through the DMR Ski School.   Schedule early as space is limited.

The Jump and Huck contest will take place on Saturday.  Be sure to bring a camera to record the carnage.  I'm sure Devin and Patrick will once again try to determine who has the biggest camera pole.
Devin and Patrick comparing camera poles
Saturday's events will conclude with a group dinner at Hoodie's at the ski resort base area.  It's a great time to relive the days events, share stories, and show your photo's of the day.

Parking is limited at the ski base area.  Don't park in the reserved ski employee parking spaces.  Your vehicle  may be subject to fines/booting/towing.

I'm taking a break from this years festival but there will be others representing Winter Park.

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Monday, February 11, 2013

Lenz Sport Skibikes hit up Vail and the Winter Mountain Games

by G. Kunkel

Loaded up the ski bike, my cheap Epic Pass, and drove to Vail Ski Resort yesterday.  I then met up with Devin, Aaron, and Todd at Lionshead.   It was the perfect day - a fresh dumping of snow and a clear blue sky day.
Lenz Sport Launch skibike posse at Vail.  Picture courtesy of Todd
The day started off with Devin teaching Todd how to ride a pegger.   As an experienced downhiller, he quickly picked things up.  We then spent most of the day riding around the mountain.

While riding around we were approached by lots of people on the hill.   All were curious about the bikes and wanted to know where they could rent them, take lessons, buy one, or how did they stop.  Everyone was friendly and there were no negative comments at all.

It's safe to say that everyone was watching us where ever we rode - including all the instructors.   While riding under the chairlift that services a teaching area, it was obvious every instructor on the lift was watching us ride.

Quite a few instructors on the hill complimented my bike when I stopped near them.  Todd got stopped by a few of his Ski Patrol buddies.  Kevin stopped Todd and produced the memorable quote for the day  "Todd, where did you get that and what's it called?"  When they asked where to get one, I pointed down the trail to Devin and said "there's the builder".

We rode down to Devin where he answered more questions and offered to do a demo day just for Ski Patrol.  Seems most patrollers there are downhillers too.  As Todd had just learned to ride, he could explain what riding the bikes were like.  We had just ridden down the bumps and crud of China Bowl so he could give a first timers viewpoint.

Speaking of China Bowl, that was pure awesomeness riding terrain.  I had a blast in the soft moguls.  We didn't have to answer the question "can you ride those in the moguls?" there.  We were doing it.

During the day we also rode over to Gold Peak to take in the Dual Slalom Course races.   Devin was sponsoring Jamas Stiber in the men's race and I kinda wanted to see if we could enter the skibikes into the event.

Once at the race area, alot of the riders flocked to see the bikes.  A few had been on them and even they suggested we try to get the race officials to let us enter.  As I wrote in an earlier post, I had been told that we couldn't but nothing helps like showing up and being there.

After a quick conference, they decided that we could do demo races after the official competition was over.  Everyone had to wear helmets and sign liability waivers and that was it.   The race officials were extremely welcoming and friendly.  Such an awesome welcome to the Vail competition scene.

Devin raced against his nephew Aaron and I and Todd lent our skibikes to people Devin knew.  Devin and Aaron raced first and hit the soft rutted course hard around the gates and flew big over the jump.  Aaron crashed around one gate so Devin went for the win.   Everyone cheered.

Looks like there could be some pegger specific events next year.   Maybe some jumping or a boardercross BMX type course.   If there's a demand, they'll let us in.  Start practicing everyone and let the Vail Valley Foundation know that you're interested in entering.

After hitting China Bowl a few times, it was time to start heading back over to Lionshead.  The sun was low in the sky and the lifts were closing.  Devin and Aaron hit up some of Todd's favorite tree runs on the way down.  We also hit up the kids adventure course that's mid-mountain.  It has alot of wide banked turns that reminded me of a boardercross course.  Again, awesomeness.

In all it was a really fun day.  We got to ride Vail and were accepted as fellow snow sliders.  Thanks to Todd for guiding us around the hill all day.   Skibikers are welcome at Vail.

Congrats to Petr Hanak of Winter Park for the 1st place finish in the dual slalom race.  Read more about  it in the Vail Daily.

Video of the Winter Mountain Games from VitalMTB

Vail Winter Mountain Games 2013 - More Mountain Bike Videos

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

2013 SIA On Snow Show at Winter Park Resort

Snowsports Industries America (SIA) the largest snowsport industry trade show in North America invaded Denver and Winter Park Resort this past week.  Thursday through Sunday was at the Colorado Convention Center.  Monday and Tuesday was in Winter Park, Colorado.  Everything wrapped up yesterday afternoon.

The WP skibike instructors decided to hold a last minute demo booth during SIA.  Good thing too.  Many people stopped by to check them out throughout the day.   Two insisted they weren't leaving without buying a bike.

Winter Park Ski + Ride School Demo Booth
Biscuit organized everything and led quite a few demo's.  One enthusiastic participant raved on about 'Ted' who led their group.  I was like Ted??????  He pointed to Biscuit and said "He's fantastic!".   Seems Biscuit has yet another alias nametag. LOL

Biscuit in charge of things.  Lenz Sport skibike display
A contingent of staff from Vail stopped by to check things out.  Rumor is they want to start a program over there too.   That's great news.

The free demo's with lessons were a great success.   Quite a few skibike licenses were issued with participants eager to return to rent bikes in the future.  Pegger lessons and rentals all go out of West Portal Rentals.

I ran the booth from about 2- 5 p.m. getting people signed up for Monday and Tuesday.   It was a great opportunity to explain the bikes to more people.   There were absolutely no negative comments this year.  People were either curious or just amped to come try them out.

Down in Denver, I scored a Epic Pass for the ridiculous price of $259.  Vail, Breckenridge, Beaver Creek, Keystone, and A-Basin are now in my circle of resorts.   I can already bike for free at any other ski resort in Colorado.

I'm going to love the hassle-free option of Arapahoe Basin in the spring.   No more trips to HR to pick up Real Deals.  Just drive to direct to the ski area.

And a wrap-up of the Denver Snow Show.



And the On-Snow Show at Winter Park Resort.  Look close and you may spot me.



© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Snowbike Tours at Snowmass Village

Snowmass now has bike tours on Friday nights.  At the beginning of the season, the Aspen/Snowmass communications staff mentioned they might start this night time activity with the opening of the new Elk Camp restaurant.  Looks like it's a go.

Tours are held every Friday night December 28 - March 29, 2013.  Meet at the Snowmass Base Village Four Mountain Sports Store at 5:15 pm.  It then starts promptly at 5:30 pm

Participants need to be at least a level 4 (intermediate) skier or snowboarder.  The basics of skibiking will be covered in the training ride.  Afterwards, there will be two on-mountain trail rides - weather permitting.

Groups are limited to 13 riders. Advance reservations are required.  Call 970-923-1227.

The cost of this fun night time adventure is $69.  Price includes skibike rental, lift pass, and tour.  Gratuities not included.

It's great that Snowmass has added this activity for their guests.  I've always enjoyed working with the nightime tours at Winter Park Resort.

Read more at http://www.aspensnowmass.com/en/events-and-activities/winter-activities/ullr-nights

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.Google

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

2013 Winter Mountain Games in Vail, Colorado

You can't blame me for not trying. If you don't ask, people won't take notice.

I got to thinking that it would be pretty cool if they included pegger bikes in some of the events at the second Winter Mountain Games in Vail. They've got mountain bike, snowshoe, nordic, climbing, and dog events....why not peggers?

Upon checking the official rules, nothing was mentioned about actually having tires on the bike. They just talked about spikes and stuff.

The only event I wanted to enter was the dual slalom course. The criterion looked too aerobic and I'm too old and wise for the best bike trick.

Rather than just show up and be told "no", I sent off an email to Adam Lueck of the Vail Valley Foundation.

I got a nice reply today but it wasn't the answer I was hoping for.  Adam said the "original intent of the event is for regular mountain bikes".  Apparently skibikes weren't even on his radar. He loves the Lenz Sport bikes but they aren't allowed.

If you now read the official rules for the Games, there's a new addition as of this morning. "Skibikes are not allowed. You have to have actual tires for this one!".

Okay, well maybe next year.   If enough of us ask about it, maybe they'll have pegger events in the future.

Peggers are wintertime downhill mountain biking.  And one thing is for sure, snow is softer than dirt and rocks.

I made an easy $50 tip Monday afternoon teaching two guys from Dallas that were wearing Gold Passes.  Lots of lessons coming from  Texans lately.  All downhillers or dirt bikers.

This video shows the highlights of last year's Best Trick event.  I think skis would work just fine on these bikes.



© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.Google

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

2013 Sipapu Skibike Rally this weekend

This small ski resort in New Mexico is hosting a rally this weekend.  A number of manufacturers will be there with their bikes and having free demos.  Skibobs and peggers are welcome.

Participants will need a lift ticket.  Registered rally participants can get them at a discounted rate.  Adults/Teens are $25 and Seniors are $15.

The American Skibike Association is having a number of planned activities.  Kids can race on the Strider bikes in the afternoon.  Adults can participate in the group Moonlight ride.

Lodging is incredibly reasonable at the resort.  Buy a full price lift ticket and they throw in the room for free.

Learn more about Sipapu Ski Resort at http://www.sipapunm.com/

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.Google

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

A necessary tool if you own a Lenz Sport

The skis on my bike needed some serious maintenance.  The edges had a ton of burrs and the bases were looking really dried out.  Some nice base gouges too.

I don't think they've had any work done on them since the bike hit the rental rack back in November.  Now that I own it - I'm maintaining it.

To do any work, I needed to get the skis off the bike.  I was told (by Devin) to get a T handle allen wrench but that was about it.  I asked what size - and he thought it was a 5mm size.

First off, I took a trip to the local hardware store and bought a allen wrench set.  Seems they only sell them in sets these days.   The 6" handle turned out to be too short to loosen all the bolts to the skis.  5mm was the right size however.

I went to Lowe's and a number of auto part stores to find a single 5mm T handle with a length of around 9 inches  (that's what Devin keeps in the West Portal Rentals tune shop at Winter Park Resort).  No luck at all in finding one at a bricks and mortar store..

After an internet search,  I found JB Tool Sales.  They had just what I was looking for and it was cheaper than anything on eBay.  They take PayPal too.

The 5mm T handle allen wrenches I ended up buying were the Bondhus 13164 5mm Balldriver T-Handle, and the Bondhus 15764 5mm Balldriver L-Wrench. I bought the L wrench to see if it would be easier to maneuver around the front mounting bracket.

The company fulfilled the order the same day and should be shipped out today. Hopefully they'll take care of the mounting of the skis. There was an instant coupon on the website too. Hey, 29 cents is 29 cents. Ended up costing a total of $12.63 with shipping.


So if you buy a Lenz Sport skibike, you'll need this tool to maintain your skis. More on tuning later.





Update:  This company believes in quick shipping.  I got them on Friday and used them to remount my skis on Sunday morning.  Both worked perfectly.  I used a little bit of blue Locktite on the screws.  The  new coat of blue winter wax on the skis really improved the gliding on the bike too.

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

What to wear skibiking in Colorado?

The gear to wear when on your bike is pretty much the same as when skiing or snowboarding.  If you haven't hit the ski slopes before, it's a legitimate question.  Those planning on hitting the terrain park may want to wear additional protection too.

The basic list:

  • Snowsport coat - wear a coat that is waterproof and windproof.  Snow melts and we can have pretty windy weather in Colorado.
  • Snowpants - wear waterproof and windproof pants.  Same reason as above.
  • Snowboard boots (peg) - most any winter boot will work but these boots provide arch support and ankle support.
  • Ski boots (skibob) - for those using foot skis.
  • Snowboard socks - don't use cotton socks as your feet will get cold.  Only wear one pair.
  • Thermal underwear or dry layer - you won't always need them but they are handy on those minus 40 F degree days.
  • Balaclava - protect your face from frostbite on those subzero days.
  • Helmet - most bikers prefer a full-face helmet to protect their teeth and head.  The Giro Remedy is a good model.  It comes in summer and winter versions.
  • Googles - protect your eyes from the sun and debris.

Most of the items can be rented at any decent sized ski resort.   They can also be found at local second hand stores for reasonable prices.

There are other items that one can use out on the ski slopes.   It's a matter of personal preference and cold temperature tolerance.  I think a 40 F day is scorching hot.  Most people I've met from Louisiana think that's impossibly cold.

Those into freestyle or racing need specialized gear.   Racers really just need to get a speed suit and specialized racing waxes.

For terrain park rats, think downhill mountain biking:

  • Body armor -  chest, leg, and arm protection.
  • Crotch protection - guys do rack themselves on skibikes.


© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google

Thursday, January 17, 2013

What is adaptive skibiking?

What does it mean when ski resorts say adaptive skibike with a permit only?

Simply put, adaptive means those that have a physical or cognitive disability that prevents them from using standardized skiing, snowboarding, or skibiking methods.  There are programs around the USA and the world to help get the disabled on the ski slopes.

The National Sports Center for the Disabled in Winter Park, Colorado pioneered adaptive teaching techniques.  It now offers instruction in skiing, snowboarding, cross-country skiing, and skibiking.  Many graduates have gone on to race in the winter Paralympics.

Under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) businesses must make accommodations for those with disabilities.  This includes ski resorts.

To get adaptive access to ski resorts that do not allow bikes, one must have a letter from their medical doctor.  The letter must state that a bike is the only way one can access the ski resort.  Some ski resorts like Vail issue permits that are attached to your skibike frame.  The Vail permit is recognized nationally.

There is a sample letter on the Skbike World website that one can use as a template for your medical doctor.   Show it to the ski area staff to get your adaptive permit there or gain access to the area.

Learn more about adaptive programs at:

National Sports Center for the Disabled - Winter Park, Colorado

Challenge Aspen - Aspen, Colorado

Adaptive Sports Association - Durango, Colorado

© 2013 G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to G. Kunkel and A Colorado Skibiker Goes Skibiking with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Google