Pugsley vs. Moonlander ?

The contenders - The Pugley - Red Rohloff'd and Racked


and in the other corner - a thparkly Moonlander

I started riding fat-bikes on a Pugsley, gifted to me for my 50th birthday and then last December I got a Moonlander complete. I haven’t ridden the Pugsley since getting my Moonlander, so I’m contemplating selling it. But first, I’d like to hear from our readers on the subject of Pugs vs Moonie. I have my thoughts, on the subject, but they are somewhat conflicted…..and muddled by the two different drive trains present on this particular set of Surlys. So please comment either here or thru facebook and tell us what you think on the subject of Pug-Fat vs. Moon-Fat.

Side by Side


Big Fat Larry vs Larry
About Gomez 2576 Articles
Just an old cat that rides bikes, herds pixels, ropes gnomes and sometimes writes stories. I love a good story.


  1. I think if you’re using a fat-bike as intended, you’ll always find a place or trerrain where you could use more float…Regardless of what bike you’re on. Personnally, I believe as long as you’re having fun, it really doesn’t matter. That said, I choose to keep my Pugz for its versatility and peace of mind (drivetrain and parts wise). As always other’s mileage may vary.

  2. I think a bunch depends on rider weight and type of riding. It seems to me that it is mostly about distributing the total weight of bike and rider over a given area. The trick is determining where the diminishing returns of things like drag and rotational weight. I’d rather not do the math/science. If it feels good just ride it!

  3. Just do like I do, keep em’ both. right now i have a pug, a moonlander, and a pimped out 907. The pug will do anything from snow to single track well. the moonlander floats like a cloud on everything, but the drawback is weight. the 907 is super light and fast but too nice to beat on, and really have fun with. My point is, the bikes are like tools, not every one is a hammer, you have to choose the right one for the particular job. My advice is to get another fat-bike and find a niche’ for it.

  4. Been thinking about this post all day.
    Does it really make a difference which one? I mean really?
    We all like turning the pedals, right?
    We just like turning the “big fat ones!!” 😉
    Sure, the ML will do things differently than the other “smaller” Fat Boys, but if ya love what ya got, ride the living shit out of it!!
    Since I got my Pugs, my other bikes have been sold or are still hanging in the garage. No hard feelings boys, it’s just the way it is!! Ha Ha
    I beat the living shit out if my Pugs and it begs for more; just as it should!!
    In my area, they ML is way to much overkill.
    As always, this is just MHO.
    Pedal On!!!


  5. Singled out my Pug and left the gears on the Moonlander.

    The ideal # of bikes is = n + 1

    n = current # of bikes.

    fat bikes are included in the category “bikes”

    I ride my Pug all the time and most of the time when I hit singletrack in the summer. I will have to say that the Moonlander is a little bouncy in the woods and can cause some bounding control issues, but the Pug’s tires act like suspension. Love it.

  6. That is a tough one. Right off the bat, I’d say, if you don’t ride a bike anymore, it’s time to sell it and let someone else enjoy it.
    Then I thought of my situation.
    I have a Mukluk & a Moonlander. I love both bikes. I like having both because now I can bring a Fat-Bikeless friend along with me when I ride Snow, Sand or Singletrack.
    I say, if you have room for both, keep them both.

  7. Craig wrote:
    >”I love both bikes. I like having both because now I can bring a Fat-Bikeless friend along with me when I ride Snow, Sand or Singletrack.”

    I couldn’t agree more. I hate riding alone, having two fatties let me invite a friend. If I could only have one (I have a Pugs too), it would be my Alfine 8 equipped Moonlander.

  8. I’ve never had a fatbike, but I am thinking about a Moonlander with an IGH. I’m wondering…how do the various makes – Rohloff, Shimano, Nexus, and others, if any, compare? I’m 60+ and won’t be riding too aggressively. Any advice and/or suggestions would be welcomed. Thanks, Bob 😉

  9. If I were to buy just one fat bike from Surly, which one should I buy?
    i live in Washington state and plan on riding trails at parks, bikecamping, and hunting big foot.

      • Gomez, very good choice, but if you don’t get the price you want, you could always keep it as a friendly loaner for friends to ride with you with you if a loaner is required. So that you can spread the f.f.f. love to others.

        This is how I was hooked on the Moonie, a friend of mine borrowed me his pugs, and when I hear snow in the forecast I get ichy.

  10. the moonlander,pugsley,or any style surly makes is the optimal form o ftransportaion in this country in my opnion,i ride 2 cargo bikes made in denmarek, and one pronghorn mt bike made in denmark,i do not own a car it as totalled i do not miss only the freedon to get to a mt bike trail,or park,i rent a car once in a while bikes are my life,anybody who has a any pugsley moonlander or the the one,let me know if you want to sell thanks barton cohen

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