JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska —
For JBER members and dependents looking to get outside during the winter, look no further than the Outdoor Adventure Program.
“We began offering fat-tire biking during the winter of last year,” said Karl Lavtar, OAP director. “While it is fairly early this year, we’ve held three trips so far with 12 people participating overall. In the coming season, we hope to get more participants.”
Trips with the OAP consist of at least one guide and a shuttle. Bikes and helmets are also included in the excursions. Guides can tailor trips based on the group’s skill level. Each trip averages four hours and costs 25 dollars.
The OAP also offers custom trips. To book a custom trip, call the OAP at least 2 weeks in advance.
“While many people are tentative their first time, they enjoy it once they start,” Lavtar said. “We cater to the group to ensure everyone has a good time.”
Lavtar recommends being wary of weather conditions and dressing accordingly.
Destinations include Hillberg, Eagleglen, Kincaid Park, Mirror Lake and the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail.
The Outdoor Recreation Center also offers fat-tire bikes for rent. Bikes are one-day rentals and cost $19.
“Fat-tire bikes have been extremely popular so far,” said Trent Murtha, ORC aide. “They’re pretty similar to normal bikes; however in winter conditions they provide more stability and keep the rider afloat on the snow.”
The ORC provides non-studded and studded fat-tire bike rentals. Bikes used for OAP activities have studded tires.
“Studded tires provide extra traction on ice and trails, however non-studded tires are still safe to use during the winter season,” Murtha said. “We make sure customers have the right bike for the occasion.”
Single service members have the opportunity to participate in trips on Feb. 10 and March 24 from 12 to 4 p.m.; each trip costs $5.
For all JBER members 14 years or older, the next ride will take place on Jan. 27 from 12 to 4 p.m. The location is to be determined.
To register for OAP events, visit the ORC at Bldg. 7301 or call 552-2023. Participants must register before attending the event.
“Fat-tire biking is a great way to get outdoors during the winter, while seeing different parts of Alaska,” said Lavtar. “It’s an awesome opportunity to meet people while learning a new skill.”
For more information, visit www.jberlife.com/fun/outdoor-recreation.