"To appreciate the beauty of a snowflake it is necessary to stand out in the cold."
Welcome to the DECEMBER 2021 Winter glog edition of MILES PEDDLED (MP) which will provide multiple reasons why the loyal subscribers to MP should embrace fat tire biking this winter. As usual, with the help of DMANOPEDIA and DMAPS, MP will also provide you with several trails on which to enjoy the fattie lifestyle this Winter. Playlist suggestion: IT'S THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR by Andy Williams.
Before we get to the subject matter of this Month's edition, however, MP needs to address some current and past issues. Specifically, on a macro level the Electrification of the Nation.
Book recommendation: Last Days of Night by Graham Moore. As stated by DMANOPEDIA:
The Last Days of Night is a thrilling novel based on actual events that tells about the electrifying feud between Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse that draws in Nikola Tesla, Alexander Graham Bell, and JP Morgan.
More to following in the trivia section.
As all of the well-educated loyal subscribers to MP know, the Democrats recently passed a $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill which will fund projects covering aging water and sewer pipes, high speed internet for rural and urban areas, and improvements to the US electrical grid. The bill includes funding for the first ever national network of charging stations for electric cars.
The BUILD BACK BETTER BILL (BBBB) which just recently passed the House, does include a tax credit up to $12,500.00 for buying an electric car.
These are the progressive steps that need to be taken to make the lives of Americans better and to keep the United States competitive in international markets. MP will always support progressive measures such as the Infrastructure bill and the BBBB. These are the principles of MP, and if you don't like them…well, we have others. Quote stolen from Groucho Marx.
So how does the Electrification of the Nation apply to a biking block? Response: please recall that in the inaugural now almost famous May 2021 edition of MP, Management pointed out that there was legislation pending entitled E-BIKE Act (H.R.1019). If this proposal passes, then it will include a tax incentive for the loyal subscribers of MP to purchase an e-bike. Unfortunately, this very well thought out proposal was not included in the Infrastructure bill. Management at MP is hopeful that it will be included in the BBBB. Stay tuned. As stated by the CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD: "You miss every shot you don't take."
Speaking of e-bikes, two very loyal subscribers recently electrified their relationship by purchasing e-bikes. Specifically, the MAD VIKING and SANDERELLA followed the recommendations of management at MP as set forth in the marvelous November 2021 Edition and plugged in to a GAZELLE ULTIMATE C380+HMB. Congrats to the proud parents. Visit the gallery of the digital version of MP at https://www.milespeddled.com. Playlist suggestion: ELECTRIC AVENUE by Eddy Grant.
Now on to the subject matter of this month's Edition: Why and where you should live the fattie lifestyle.
"There is just something beautiful about walking on snow that nobody else has walked on. It makes you believe you're special." - Carol Rifka Brunt.
All of the loyal subscribers to MP are special and hence, not only will you walk on the snow, but you will be able to ride on the snow.
Before we get to the whys and the wheres you need the whats. In particular, what fat tire bike is necessary to handle the trails. Management at MP has already provided this information. Please see the magnificent November Edition in which Management makes 4 recommendations of fat tire bikes (henceforth fatties).
Now, Why You Should Embrace the Fattie Lifestyle!
Staying fit in the Winter is hard, but fatties make outdoor exercise possible. They provide a tough workout; some have described it as: It's like riding a bike and a horse at the same time. You can burn up to 1,500 calories in an hour.
In addition, because riding a fattie is non-weight bearing, the recovery time is less than if you went on an hour long run.
As stated above, riding a fattie is like riding a bike and a horse at the same time. Who would not want to do that?
The comical proportions of a fat tire bike will make you stand out regardless of where you ride. Thus, you will be the talk of the town and meet new people.
You can ride a fattie anywhere at any time. It will take you places that you have never biked before. This is part of the fun.
Now that you know why you should embrace the fattie lifestyle, the question becomes - Where are you going to enjoy your fattie?
Before we get to the actual trails management is going to assume that its very educated subscribers will be able to use Google Maps and DMAPS to locate the trails recommended below. We will start local and branch out.
1. Deer Grove
Deer Grove Forest Preserve is located near Palatine, Illinois. It was Cook County's first forest preserve with nearly 2,000 acres of rolling forest, wooded ravines, wetland and prairie. Surprisingly, the Cook County Forest Preserve has an excellent interactive map which will give you access to all of the trails.
2. Palos Trail System
As the name implies, the Palos Trail System is near Palos Hills, Illinois. It is considered one of the premier places for mountain biking in Illinois. It has 150 miles of paved trails and 200 miles of unpaved trails including many that are single track. Perfect for a winter ride on the fattie.
NOTE: Per Darling Dar (DD) once you finish the fattie ride on the Palos Trails you should head over to Rocco's Little Italy located at 7907 West 159th Street in Tinley Park, Illinois, for a classic southern style Italian meal.
3. CamRock Trails, Wisconsin
CamRock is near Cambridge, Wisconsin. It is considered one of the best fat tire biking locations in the Midwest. It has 10 miles of single track and 8 miles of multi-track, plus you can rent a fattie and when you finish it has a nice spot to get some delicious food and a microbrew.
4. Madison, Wisconsin
Madison is surrounded by 4 large bodies of water all within biking distance of downtown. When the lakes are snow crusted riding on the lakes is a fun and unique activity. If the lakes are iced, you will need to place the studded tires on your fattie.
5. Marquette, Michigan
Chicago to Marquette, Michigan is a long haul, but it is considered to be the premier fat tire biking area in the Midwest. Marquette has over 83 miles of shoreline along Lake Superior with 60 miles of groomed fattie trails.
Now that you know why you should embrace the fattie lifestyle and where to do so, it is time to move on to the trivia/quiz section of this month's Edition. Specifically, Why is Chicago important to the Electrification of the Nation?
According to DMANOPEDIA: Starting in the late 1880s, Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla (former employee of Edison now backed by George Westinghouse) were embroiled in a battle known as the War of Currents. Movie recommendation: The Current War starting Katherine Waterston and Benedict Cumberbatch.
Edison developed Direct Current (DC), which is current that runs continually in a single direction, like in a battery or fuel cell. During the early years of electricity, DC was the standard in the US.
There were, however, problems with DC, in particular, it was not easily converted to higher or lower voltages. In addition, it could not travel long distances.
Tesla believed that Alternating Current (AC) was the solution to the problems outlined above. AC reverses direction a certain number of times per second which allowed it to travel long distances; and, it could be easily converted using a transformer.
Edison, always the wily businessman in addition to being an inventor, did not want to lose the royalties he was earning from his DC patents. Thus, he began a misinformation campaign in which he indicated that AC was more dangerous than DC. Edison went as far as to publicly execute stray animals using AC current to prove his point. Ironically, the barbaric Electric Chair is powered by DC.
This is where Chicago comes into play. The 1893 Chicago World's Fair known as the World's Columbian Exposition took place at the height of the current war.
Edison General Electric (now known as General Electric) bid to electrify the World's Fair by using DC at the cost of approximately $554,000.00. George Westinghouse, using a license that he received from Tesla, bid $400,000.00 to electrify the World's Fair using AC. The contract went to Westinghouse.
But for the DEVIL IN THE WHITE CITY, the 1893 Chicago World's Fair was an electrifying success and established AC as the current of choice.
Please recall the book recommendation: Last Days of Night which tells this story in greater more eloquent detail than this humble publication.
TEASE TIME: Now that MP has taken you out into the cold to enjoy your fattie, you will be able to look forward to the January 2022 edition in which management will outline some wonderful warm weather biking trails. Playlist suggestion: WARM RIDE by Rare Earth.
Time to go: "It's time to say goodbye, but I think goodbyes are sad and I would much rather say hello. Hello to a new adventure." Ernie Harwell. Enjoy the Fattie Adventure and always remember to R, R & R!