It all started with a small crew of bicycle-obsessed hippies bombing the downhill trails of Mount Tamalpais in Marin County, California. As the friendly competition intensified on the steep dirt trail they called Repack, history's first mountain bikers began craving an upgrade from the old Schwinn cruisers they had rescued from the junkyard. With the single-minded focus found only among the truly obsessed, this rag-tag group sparked a rapid evolution that transformed the castoff Repack bomber into the modern mountain bike, a refined and elegant machine that quickly became the top-selling bicycle in the world.
Charlie Kelly–co-founder of the MountainBikes company with Gary Fisher, organiser of the Repack races, and chronicler of the sport–now delivers the true, complete and often unbelievable history of the rise of mountain biking and its lasting culture. Rich with first-hand descriptions and bursting with original photographs, drawings, and memorabilia, Fat Tire Flyer is the definitive history of one of the most significant inventions of the 20th century.
Charlie Kelly is one of the founding fathers of mountain biking. He's written for VeloNews and Bicycling, and is currently the U.S. mountain bike correspondent for Rouleur and Privateer magazines in the UK. He and Gary Fisher founded MountainBikes, selling Tom Ritchey's first mountain bike frames as complete bikes. Charlie was founder, editor and publisher of Fat Tire Flyer, the first mountain bike magazine. He is the supreme archivist of the origin of the sport of mountain biking.
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