Friday, April 24, 2009

Fat Tire Festival Day two.

Day two of Fat Tire found more registering, even a mountain biker from Norway. Morning saw more tents grow with bikes and all kinds of mountain biking accessories on their showcase.
Aspen Street Coffee and Camilla's Kaffe were busy with the Java and the breakfasts. Many bikers were heading out to the many trails around Fruita. Some used maps they found helpful for Kokopelli as well as for the north end of 18 Road.
Found at the Civic Center was a "homeless biker" from Spokan, Washington, Craig Bierly, was giving some special attention to two beautiful dogs owned by Gary Kingeler formerly a fireman from Oakland, California, now living in Bend, Oregon.
"I retired in June of 2008," Bierly said. " I downsized everything I owned by selling it."
He proceeded to condense all possessions to a Dodge Sprinter, two bikes, one for the road, one for the mountains. He now has biked in 43 states and is excited about being in Fruita which he considers a ten.
Kingeler decided there really was no exact best for biking since every location has it positives. He loved the forest biking of Bend, but loves to travel elsewhere for about two months. He felt that Moab, Fruita and Bend belong in the top five.
"Everywhere you go, you have to master different skills," he said.
Tim Whitney, a first timer, and Al Schmidt who marks the 2009 festival as his third, were visiting from Golden.
Mickey Shanberger, a retired engineer and professional photographer wondered about the origins of mountain biking.
"I think bike designs began in the foothills of the Sierra coastal region," he said. "Some guys south of Morgan Hill made the first mountain bikes, I think in the early 80s. They had many problems to solve such as bigger tires, some way to make shocks. It bears checking it out."
Brian Bently, his wife, Crystal, and daughter, Taylor poised with their dogs, Taco, Mataya and the black and white pup, as they enjoyed the crowds and displays.
Heading up to the Kokopelli Trail Head found mountain bikers still heading out at 6:00 p.m.
Bob Sizek's property hosted a demo tent, campers and groups grilling supper thanks to Steve Negelkerke, an old friend of Sizek's from Colorado Springs.
Back at the Civic Center stage the Pineapple Crackers group entertained the crowd. Mesa State Brandon Birdsall who was helping with security at the gates for the beer garden, complimented the choice of music.
"They are a local band," he said. "They play a lotta gigs and people like them."
So, at the magic hour of ten, the musicians folded, the beer garden was closed and everyone headed for the sandman to get energy for the celebrations and events scheduled for Saturday.