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Word to Snow Cyclists: You're Not Allowed in Yellowstone

By January 5, 2011

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Did you know you can ride your bike in the winter? Well, you need a certain bike, with certain tires. But you can't just ride anywhere. Recently, 53-year-old Rick Buchanan was turned away when he tried to lead a group of snow cyclists into Yellowstone National Park.

Tim Reid, Yellowstone's chief ranger, told Buchanan that the bike is not an approved means of winter travel, therefore, the group could not ride in the park. Under Yellowstone's winter management plan, one can only enter the park by approved snowmobiles, snowcoaches, cross-country skis, or snowshoes. But the snow bike has actually been gaining popularity in the past 5 years.

So what's the bike like? Manufactured by Surly, the Pugsley bike features 4-inch-wide tires (twice the size of normal mountain bike tires) which run at a low air pressure, a drive train and gears similar to regular mountain bikes, and disc brakes that work in the winter.

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