Fat bikes are defined as mountain bikes with tires wider than 3 inches. Most fat bikes are categorized as either 4-inch or 5-inch fat bikes, depending on tire width.

What’s a fat bike good for?

Fat bikes are designed for riding in loose conditions, usually snow. However, they work equally well for riding in loose sand. Wide tires also help beginning riders navigate technical terrain such as rocks and roots.

Contrary to popular belief, fat bike tires do not act as suspension in a mountain bike. While the high volume tires do provide rebound like a suspension component does, that’s only half of the equation. Tires cannot provide damping, resulting in a bouncy feeling that is not associated with proper bike suspension.

Which fat bike should I buy?

These are the best fat bikes, according to Singletracks readers.

  1. Trek Farley
  2. Specialized Fat Boy
  3. Salsa Beargrease
  4. Salsa Bucksaw
  5. Surly Ice Cream Truck
  6. Surly Pugsley
  7. Salsa Mukluk
  8. Rocky Mountain Blizzard
  9. Pivot LES Fat
  10. Framed Minnesota & Trek Farley EX (tie)

Get the latest fat bike news from Singletracks below.