When Gomez approached me about doing write-ups on Canadian fat bike companies, gear and culture I jumped at the chance. Unfortunately, I am a much better talker than a writer. However, after some direction and encouragement from Gomez, much like a father teaching his child to ride their first bike, I contacted Fatbike.ca. and spoke to outdoor sports enthusiast and owner of Fat Bikes Canada, Peter Demos. Speaking to him I was thoroughly impressed with his passion, enthusiasm, and knowledge of the custom fat bike market.
Fat Bikes Canada is located in the Ontario town of Bracebridge, a two-hour drive north of Toronto. The town and surrounding communities are a popular destination for 4 season recreation. Peter started his business as Livoutside in 1998. Livoutside offers rentals and purchases of bikes, paddle boards, x-country skis, kayaks, and other outdoor sports equipment.
Before fat bikes were as popular and accessible as they are today, Peter used to ride 29’er bikes with the widest tire possible on hard-packed snowmobile trails. In 2007 Peter built a Surly Pugsley for a customer and the seed was planted. He knew these bikes were going to become a “thing” for extending the riding season over the long cold winter months. In 2010, fatbikes.ca is born. In the past fatbikes.ca has been host to and has sponsored races in the Ontario Fat Bike series and his business currently has a 10km groomed trail that is built in cooperation with local landowners for winter fat-biking. Livoutside now carries Corvus, Surly, Otso, Why Cycles, and others.
Peter shared with me that customers come to fatbikes.ca because they have the ability to substitute parts they really want for their dream build. Peter enjoys working with customers to determine what kind of bike would work best for the type of riding they will be doing. Peter’s expertise extends to helping those customers who want to fat-bike all year round. He spoke about how he could see using it as an all-season bike with all the improvements in fat bike geometry, suspension, tires, and gearing. However, he did suggest that if you wanted to make your bike a little nimbler in the warmer months, they offer a 29er wheelset. Fat Bikes Canada personalizes every bike build from the frame up with quality parts that are built with harsh winter conditions in mind.
The products that Fat Bikes Canada offers are very intentional; products such as OneUp, Deity, 45NRTH, and Onyx just to name a few. Fat Bikes Canada also carries iconic Canadian brands Cromag and Race Face. Peter feels that is very important to support and work with companies that created and continue to innovate fat bikes. Each supplier he works with has been hand-selected by Peter for the quality of their product and their commitment to advancing fat-biking. An additional benefit to working so closely with their suppliers is you can almost guarantee they can get a bike to you when you need and want it. This is opposed to ordering a bike through your LBS and sometimes having to wait to receive your bike because of global supply chain issues. When Peter selects suppliers, he is also very attentive to the quality of their product, so you have the assurance of high-quality time-tested bikes and components.
When asked whether he sold e-fat bikes Peter shared that at this time fatbikes.ca doesn’t offer E-Fat Bikes for sale. Peter believes it could potentially lower the quality of customer service and spread the business too thin. However, for anyone who is interested in quality fat bikes but is budget conscious, fatbikes.ca offers Quebec brand Moose Fat bikes which are well spec’d and reasonably priced.
If you love the idea of making your bike unique to you, give fatbikes.ca a look. They have dedicated bicycle people willing to help you navigate your fat bike needs and they ship coast to coast in Canada. Also, keep an eye on them for some exciting future projects that are still in the “R & D” stage.
Call or stop by Fat Bikes Canada headquarters in Bracebridge and tell them Allroy sent you.