fbpx

Complete Field Guide to the 2019 Fat Tire Festival

Online Registration is Over, On Site Day of is available starting Friday 10/18 at 9AM for $225

The Riding

There will be professionally guided rides available Friday and Saturday with options for everyone, from family paced mellow low mileage and low speed jaunts to full-on-worm-burning 30 mile epic rides.  All rides leave from the vendor expo area and there will be multiple ride options rolling throughout both Friday and Saturday.  When you check in to the event you will receive the hard copy schedule of all of the rides and all other activities for the weekend.  You will also receive a hard copy of the maps of the trail networks and GPS files will be available for download prior to the event and onsite.

The trail network at CampO has grown a bit with a new ~8 mile Lake Loop trail that will be completed in early 2019, bringing a much more rideable network for the beginners that also offers great flow and fun for everyone.  We will also have full use of the Glendale trail network, the original home of Fat Tire Fest!   Glendale is about 10 miles, as the crow flies, from the expo area, about a 20 minute drive, and well worth it, with some of the best riding in all of Southern Illinois!  We will have personnel on site at Glendale and multiple guided rides there also both Friday and Saturday.  This ~15 mile trail network is the favorite of riders from all throughout southern Illinois and the Paducah Kentucky area, a super fun set of trails with slickrock, bluffs, tech and flow.

Specialized and Niner will be on site with demo trucks stuffed to the gills with awesome bikes for you to throw a leg over and take out into the dirt, all will be available for real demo rides on our CampO trail network! The only limit to the fun will be please bring them back within one hour so others have a chance to try them out too, but feel free to take them out multiple times and try multiple bikes!

For the mellowest riders we go offsite on Saturday to the very scenic Tunnel Hill Trail, a short 10 minute drive away, for a fun ride on southern Illinois’ only rail trail.  Experience riding through a tunnel over 500’ long, riding across multiple trestles, the largest of which is 400’ long and over 100’ high and enjoy the fun of a meandering ride on the relatively flat trail. This ride is an out and back so you can go as long or as short as you want.

 

The Venue

Camp Ondessonk, located in the heart of the Shawnee National Forest, is an amazing destination that has served as the location for Fat Tire Fest for the last seven years.  They provide us with treehouse accommodations for all, have tent camping options if you would rather, and a number of spots for RV’s too (no hookups though), let us know when you sign up which you would rather do. The treehouses give you the outdoor experience like no other, without the hassles of packing all your camping gear. Think open air sleeping with a roof over your head, no doors or screens to interrupt your enjoyment of all things outdoors while keeping you and your gear dry and off the dirt.  Each treehouse has a number of bunks, all with mattresses, and to keep it real none have power. So a sleeping bag, some clothes, your bike, riding gear and a good flashlight are all you need to bring. We will have a charging station at HQ with more than enough room for all your devices to get a refresh.  There are flushers and warm showers conveniently located throughout camp to get you back to fresh after a long ride.

 

The GRUB and Liquid Refreshments

Those who have been before know; we have the best food and drink of any MTB festival in the country. Hot breakfast both mornings with great food options and plenty o’ BACON, a Pulled Pork BBQ dinner on Saturday night, fresh local Bratwurst and Burgers Friday night and to cap it off on Sunday awesome Open Fire Grilled Pork Steaks for all at the final lunch! We also make sure you have lunch with you on the trail, a full sandwich and lunch snack bar is provided Saturday morning so you can pack yours before you get on the trail and on Friday we have a small sandwich bar set up at the HQ/Expo area and Glendale.  We have watercoolers all around at the Expo area and samples of many different performance drink mix options.  Excel bottling makes sure we have soda on tap all weekend, and let’s not forget our beer sponsor, New Belgium keeps the taps on every night from 4PM till we close it down with great brews that are ice cold and included for all of age. All of this is included for every FTF participant!

 

Other FUN!

Vendor Expo

This year we have the largest vendor expo we have ever had with representatives from the following sponsors onsite with awesome products: Specialized, Sram, Shimano, Garmin, Thule, New Belgium, Niner and a couple others yet to be announced. We will have prizes from tons of sponsors, as always thousands of $$$$’s in prizes will be given away throughout the weekend

Fat Tire Challenge Friday Night

The Fat Tire Challenge will go down on Friday night, and always  includes the world famous “Huffy Toss”, the “Little Kids Bike Dual Slalom”, the CampO tug of war to lead it all off and who knows what else we might cook up. We will have a huge campfire going all night long to keep you nice and warm while you wait for your turn at the craziness.

Live Music in the CampO Grotto Saturday Night

Saturday night after everything else is done and dinner is finished, we will roll the kegs down to the CampO grotto and enjoy some awesome live music.

Sunday Morning O’Face Adventure Race

Sunday morning, just after breakfast, we all jump in for the O’Face Adventure Race.  This is a super FUN, challenging and exciting adventure race held on the CampO grounds that gets everyone in on the fun.  O’Face is an awesome way to cap off a great weekend of fun, and great prizes will be awarded right after lunch.

The Schedule

Friday, October 18

  • 9:00AM Registration Opens, luggage haul happens from 9AM-8PM, check in at registration before unpacking your car to get the details on how this works.
  • 11AM-3PM Guided MTB rides for every skill level
    • CampO MTB Ride Options from Expo Area
      • Family/Kids/Beginner Ride
        • 12PM
      • Intermediate Ride 12-15 miles
        • 12PM
      • Technical Ride 15+ miles
        • 12PM
      • Lake Glendale Options
        • Intermediate/Beginner Ride ~10 miles
          • 12PM
        • Fast and Fun 15-20 miles
          • 1:30PM
        • 11AM Gravel
          • 30 mile Gravel Adventure Ride, get out on the gravel and see what all the buzz is about
        • 10AM-5:30PM Specialized and Niner Demo Trailers Open
          • Enjoy a great selection of high-end MTB and Gravel rigs
          • :60 minute limit per demo ride please; Multiple demo rides allowed, we want everyone to have a chance to try out the bike of their dreams
        • 12PM Lunch, Expo Area, Sandwiches, Trail Mix, Chips, Excel sodas and maybe some Oreo’s.
        • 1:30PM Group Hike, West Side of Camp O, explore Phantoms Canyon.
        • 4:00PM Thanks to our generous beer sponsors, New Belgium Brewing, time to tap the kegs
        • 4PM-8:00PM Expo area hang out
          • Check out the FTF gear
          • Get up to speed on all the latest gear from product experts
          • Check out some super sweet Expo deals
          • Hang out with the teams from Specialized, Niner, Bike Surgeon, Sram/Zipp, Thule, and others
          • Get to know your new friends and plan your rides for Saturday
        • 6PM Dinner at the Expo Area
          • Pasta this year, carb it up for the big day ahead!
            • Swedish Bolognese Farfalle, a creamy beef pasta dish, with baguette and side
          • 8:30PM The Fat Tire Fest Challenge sponsored by New Belgium
            • CampO Tug-o-War, Little Kid Bike Dual Slalom (DO NOT bring your bad ass race bike for this one), Huffy Toss (you can bring your bike for this one, but it won’t live), Keg Pull Sled Challenge
          • 11:30PM FTF Closes for Friday night, GoTo BED 😊!

 Saturday, October 19

  • 8:30AM Breakfast and announcements at NEW Dining Hall PLEASE DON’T BE LATE, YOU WILL LOSE OUT ON BREAKFAST AND LUNCH.
    • Omelets, Biscuits and Gravy, Sausage, Fresh Fruit, Cereal
    • Packing your trail lunch after breakfast: Ham, Turkey, Smoked Cheddar, Swiss; make a sandwich or wrap, chips, granola bars, and other snacks. Pack it for the trail.

   Fat Tire Fest Fun 10AM-5PM

  • Specialized and Niner Demo Trucks 10AM-5PM
    • :90 minute limit per demo ride please
    • Multiple demo rides allowed
    • Sorry no demo bikes offsite
  • RIDE OPTIONS
    • Guided MTB Group Rides: from the Expo Area between 10AM and 3PM, all rides will roll through CampO trails and bring you back to the expo area.
      • At CampO
        • Lake Loop Chill Ride 4 miles: 10:30AM and 2PM
        • Family/Kids/Beginner Ride on the new CampO MTB Trail: 11AM
        • Intermediate Ride 12-15 miles: 11AM
        • Technical Ride 20 miles: 11AM
      • At Lake Glendale
        • Intermediate/Beginner Ride 11AM
        • Fast and Fun 1:30PM
    • Mellow Tunnel Hill Trail Ride
      • Departs CampO via car at 10:30AM
      • 20 miles of rail trail chill riding
    • Cannonball Gravel Race, 10AM
      • Get signed up for this one beforehand if you are interested, 100K+5000’ or 25 miles with 1,500’ = the most challenging gravel race in Illinois, details at www.cannonball.bike special pricing for FTF registrants hit us up for the code.
  • OTHER CAMP-O ACTIVITIES
    • 10-11:30AM
      • CampO Archery On the road to the Dining Hall, Brush up on your skills
      • 10:30AM Guided CampO Hike from the Expo area: Camp’s East Side, the tallest waterfall in Illinois ~3 hours
    • 1:00-4:00PM
      • Boating on the Big Lake Just down the hill from HQ, paddle ahoy!
      • 2:00PM Guided CampO Hike explore one of Camp’s many Natural Areas
  • 4:00PM Fat Tire Fest MTB All-In Race
    • Line up and race! For the first time ever, we are having a MTB race at Fat Tire Fest!  1/3 Single Track, 1/3 Urban, 1/3 Gravel and 2/3rds FUN adds an awesome way to finish up Saturday’s riding.  Beer hand-ups, stair climbs, small drops, covered bridges, single track speed and maybe even a man-made or two with a distance for everyone on this all new 1 mile course. Huge Prize Raffle for ALL race participants!
  • 4:00PM Expo Area Reopens
    • Beer is tapped once again, Meet up with friends and enjoy reminiscing the day
    • Cheer on the competitors in the All-In Race! Don’t forget your cowbell!
  • 6:30PM BBQ Dinner is served at Vendor Expo area
    • Come hungry for the best BBQ in SoILL! Smoked Pulled Pork, Hot German Potato Salad, Smoked Mac and Cheese, and a Fresh Garden Salad
  • 8:15PM-11:15PM EarthSol at CampO, Live Music to finish off the night.
  • 12:00AM YOU should be in bed now, its tomorrow for gosh sake J.

 

Sunday, October 20

  • 8:45AM Breakfast at NEW Dining Hall
    • Cinnamon Rolls! Cheese Omelets and Bacon
    • Come ready for the O-Face Race
    • O-Face Race overview immediately following breakfast
  • 9:30AM-12:00PM O-Face Adventure Race
    • DO NOT miss out on the FUN that is the O-Face Race
      • Find a teammate for teams of two
        • Hit us up if you can’t find someone to team up with and we will hook you up
      • It will be challenging but mainly FUN!
    • 12:15PM Final FTF Lunch Extravaganza!
      • Italian Beef and HomeMade Fries
      • O-Face Race Awards Ceremony
      • FTF Grand Prize giveaways
    • FTF 2019 is in the books, time to go home and post up all the fun to FaceBook!