Back in June, I started field testing the Fezzari Kings Peak carbon fiber fat bike. We published a first look at the bike before it got dirty (like in the photo above). Today’s journey is going to be all about how much fun we had putting this bike through six weeks of Summer riding! A couple of readers have been asking for some thoughts about the Kings Peak so let us proceed with all due haste.
During the first three rides on the KP, I rode the bike completely stock. The KP comes with 27.5 x 4.5 Terrene Cake Eaters. Any good fat bike should come with big fat tires. Most people buy these things to ride on snow and big tires make that a ball. The Cake Eaters offer a little more heft, traction, and rolling resistance than 27.5 x 4.0 versions that work better for dirt. After that initial feeling-out period, I mounted Maxxis Minion FBF’s on both the front and the rear and didn’t change them for the rest of the riding. When I went through Fezzari’s excellent bike builder, I chose a set of Mulefut wheels instead of their HED Carbon wheel option because I knew that I had a set of HED Carbon Wheels that I’d utilize during testing. I also swapped out the grips with some Ergons. With the HED Wheels, the Kings Peak weighed in at twenty-four and a half pounds.
The next week of testing included a big ride at the Southern Kettles and a trip up to Bayfield. The ride feel of the KP was starting to sink in and it felt and behaved like a progressive geometry fat bike. Not quite as slack or fast as the Rocky Mountain Blizzard that I had just tested, but slacker than traditional fat bikes. The other thing that was messing with my head was the fact that the Fezzari is a size large frame and the Blizzard is a medium. I can ride either size at 5’11”. So I started to look at the geometry charts of a collection of fat bikes that I’ve ridden. When I collected that data and compared it with the ride impressions of all of those bikes, it started to make some sense to me. I’ve also been told that all of that is just horseshit by my ride buddies. One thing is for sure… most geometry charts are missing critical information like fork offset and are therefore incomplete and/or misleading. Nothing beats riding a bike for six weeks to evaluate how it rides. I can stare at charts and scribble down numbers all that I want, but there’s no substitution for riding. So that’s what I did. During all of these test rides, I also started to compare times on trail segments that I ride. On the trip up to Bayfield. I took the KP on a gorgeous beach ride and rode the trails at Mt Ashwabay. The KP handled it all quite easily. Read more about the Bayfield trip here – https://fat-bike.com/2022/06/field-trip-way-up-nort-bayfield-county-superior-vistas/
I wanted to try to expose the Kings Peak to all of the sorts of ride challenges that I could think of that are available during summer riding. I rode Gravel and mixed surface rides. I rode beach, singletrack, and doubletrack. I rode to the trails on mixed surface and then rode those singletrack dirt trails and then rode mixed surfaces back to the barn.
I rode singletrack to a backcountry shelter on Kings Peak. It was my first bikepacking experience dealing with a dropper post and all of my kit fit just like Adam told me! The KP with a dropper fully loaded was a blast on singletrack. It felt solid and never let out a whimper.
Over the last six weeks, I’ve been able to hit all of my local favorite trails from Camrock to all three systems at Kettle and Silver Lake. The benchmark ride at Kettle is called the Full Monty. There’s a section that’s closed this summer for logging, but whatever you wanna call every other part of that 26-mile ride, that this bike conquered.
During the full monty ride at Kettle, the KP scored a couple PR’s and overall, this bike would consistently get times that were in the top three of my fastest segment times. That was more common compared to setting a new PR. The question remains how the bike will ride on snow, but it’s a ripper on dirt.
In the final week with the KP, I installed an Old Man Mountain rack and did another overnight camping trip. The last weekend, I also got to preview the route that Steve Meurett put together for something called the Summer Squatch that’s going to have an optional overnighter to Wildcat Mound and ride the singletrack at Levis with Adam Blake.
Steve’s route was about half singletrack and half enhanced gravel. What was listed as gravel road had sections of deep sand and crazy-looking white hardpack sprinkled with chunky rocks and all kinds of other fun stuff. The KP handled it all very well. In fact, this bike handled just about everything that I could throw at it very well. From the ordering process that utilizes the bike builder on the Fezzari.com website to the solid professional pre-build to the in-field testing, the Fezzari Kings Peak has been totally solid. Fezzari also offers a 30 day – ‘Love it or Return it’ money-back guarantee and the frame comes with a lifetime warranty.
For more information about the Fezzari Kings Peak visit – https://fezzari.com/collections/mountainbikes/products/kingspeak