Every Tuesday night over the summer, people looking to get outside and get some exercise can hit the roads and pedal the trails with a group of fellow bikers for the Fat Tire Rides.
Brad Kusz has been riding the trails for years and helps organize the rides.
"We meet at different places every week," he said. "We do encourage all abilities to ride. If newer abilities, or if someone hasn't rode on this ride, we tell them to let us know so we can sit there and watch them and make sure they make it because this is a lot faster-paced group. These guys are out to ride hard and ride off road."
Kusz said the ride is called a fat tire ride, but it's not just for the fat bikes with larger tires, which have become more popular in recent years. The fat bikes have larger tires that make it easier to ride on snow, sand and other such terrain, but the ride is more for mountain bike riders, Kusz said.
"We call it a fat tire ride, but it's mountain bike riding," he said. "It's not the fat, fat bike, which now a fat tire bike means something different than it has for a long time. You've got to remember a fat tire bike for a long time was a cruiser like a Schwinn bike because it wasn't a road bike tire."
The rides have been going on for around 20 years Kusz said, and the club's membership has grown to average about 20 to 30 riders each week.
The growing membership of the club represents the growing interest in biking overall, which Kusz said is constantly growing.
"With the population decrease biking went down, but now it has been increasing steadily," he said. "More people are getting involved, more people are realizing and enjoying it. With all the rides going on, and talk of trails, people are enjoying it more."
The rides are free and no registration is required. Fat Tire Rides are held every Tuesday at 6 p.m. Meeting locations and dates are below:
May 20 – Pit Stop Bar and Grill, Bessemer; May 27 – Depot Park, Ironwood; June 3 – Hobby Wheel, Ironwood; June 10 – Sunday Lake Park, Wakefield; June 17 – Raven Ridge Trail, Woodruff, Wis. (meet at Hobby Wheel, 5 p.m ., or at trail head); June 24 – Wolverine Ski Chalet, Ironwood; July 1 – Bluff Valley Park, Bessemer; July 8 – Powers Road Trails (meet at Trailhead off Lake Road); July 15 – Sunday Lake Park, Wakefield; July 22 – Escanaba Trail in Boulder Junction (meet at Hobby Wheel, 5 p.m.); July 29 – Gorge Falls parking lot; Aug. 5 – Steiger's Hardware, Bessemer; Aug. 12 – Black River Pub and Grub; Aug. 19 – Copper Creek ride, out of Wakefield on 519 North; Aug. 26 – Powers Road Trails (meet at trail head off Lake Road); Sept. 2 – Maplewood Restaurant; Sept. 9 – Wolverine Ski Chalet; Sept. 16 – Famous Everson Apple Fest Ride (meet at Neil Everson's house).