Electric vehicles are really gaining up on their human-powered counterparts; electric scooters are beating traditional scooters by a landslide, and the e-bikes and e-skateboards are gaining more ground and are finally getting the recognition they deserve. The “last mile” transportation problem is so close to being solved.
Sometimes, the new technology opens up an entirely new frontier nobody expected, such as using electric fat tire bikes for hunting. They’re robust, stable, durable, easy to use and even carry additional gear in the woods. Compared to regular bicycles, that can’t carry enough gear, and ATVs, that are too loud and smelly, the E-bike gives hunters an amazing edge.
Hunting with an eBike is becoming more and more popular, and frankly, it’s the best choice of transportation for a hunter on the prowl. Fat tire electric bikes are also perfect for cruising the beach or a winter biking adventure, as they can ride on sand, snow and in all sorts of conditions.
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- Best Fat Tire Electric Bikes – Top 6
- Are fat tires better than regular tires?
- Fatbikes vs regular mountain bikes
- Are fat ebikes harder to ride or handle?
- Are they good for exercise?
- Hub motor vs. mid drive-motor vs. ultra mid-motor
- How much range does a fat tire electric bike have?
QuietKat is basically a household name at this point. They’re an US company based in Eagle, Colorado, and they make all terrain electric vehicles. We’ve already seen how great their Prowler electric trike is, and many hunters were interested in getting one.
The QuietKat Apex 1000 W is one of their top end models with the price and quality to match. It has a 1000 W Bafang mid-drive electric motor meaning it’s not street legal in most places, and you should ask the DMV and the public land authorities if you can use it on their land and public roads. It’s legal to use on any private land. The Apex has a 48 V/ 11.6 Ah Panasonic battery, which is a quality battery.
To match an amazing motor, they use powerful hydraulic disc brakes for those sweet downhill rides. Even though fat tires provide great suspension on their own, this bike has a quality suspension fork.
With an amazing range of 45 miles and a 9 speed drive-train, this bike will get you wherever you want to go. You can go further than most other hunters and fishermen, and carry a bigger load. The QuietKat Apex has a maximum load weight of 300 lbs, meaning it’ll carry you, your gear, and whatever game you harvest.
The QuietKat Ranger is a more affordable option. It’s still a great QuietKat e-bike, but instead of a powerful high-torque mid-drive motor, it uses a Bafang hub motor. Hub motors are reliable, easy to service and are used in most EVs, but they don’t transfer the same amount of torque that a mid-drive engine would; making climbing hills just a bit slower. We didn’t notice it under normal loads, but under heavier loads you’ll really feel it; just push the throttle and keep going, it’ll feel slow but you’ll beat the gradient.
The Ranger uses a Bafang 750 W hub motor, which is both street legal and legal in most public lands; be sure to talk to the wardens and get an OK from them first! Some sections of public land have very strict rules and may even prohibit regular bicycles, let alone electric ones.
A weaker engine is matched by weaker mechanical disc brakes, but they’ve done their job admirably. Like the Apex, the Ranger has a quality front suspension fork, which makes the ride feel smoother regardless of how rugged the terrain is.
In addition, the Ranger weighs just a bit more than the Apex; but is also almost half the price of the Apex. This is the second best e-bike, and is a lot more budget friendly than the Apex.
Named after a legendary movie hero, the Rambo lives up to its name by being one of the best nature-trekking e-bikes out there. This bike is fits in-between the Apex and the Ranger; by both price and build quality. The Rambo has a Bafang 750 W mid-drive motor, meaning that it’s both street legal and offers more torque than a hub motor. Like most other e-bikes in this category, it uses the 48 V/11.6 Ah battery.
it has a weight limit of 300 pounds, which is more than enough for most hunters and their harvest. The Rambo is also the lightest e-bike out of the ones we reviewed, weighing at 66 lbs.
What really makes Rambo one of the best hunting e-bikes out there is the accessories. It can have multiple saddle bags, gun racks, carts and other equipment that lets you carry more into (or out of) the wilderness. The carts are especially useful as they can let you pack more camping gear, like tents, pots and food.
All in all, we’re very pleased, and you won’t make a mistake by buying any one of these three bikes. They do what they set out to do, and hopefully have a service life that will long outlast their battery pack.
The Cyrusher Snow Bike wasn’t marketed as a great hunting e-bike option, but we dared to try. It’s a fine, budget-friendly bike that’s best used on roads, but it was great on the trail too. Some mountain bikers complained about its performance in higher speeds, but most hunters won’t reach those speeds due to the risk of having your gear fall or startling the game.
You have a choice to make: either go with the 1000 W version that won’t be legal everywhere but will get you over hills easily, or the 500 W version that’s pretty much legal anywhere but a bit slower on the uphill. The hub motor is good, but not as good as the Bafang ones; still, we’re pleased with the performance for the price.
It uses Shimano gear shifters and mechanical disc brakes, which performed admirably. This bike was successful in any terrain and a joy to ride. Thankfully, it also accepts most hunting e-bike accessories like carts or saddle bags with minimal modifications.
For the people that don’t have much garage space, Wallke has a folding fat tire ebike option. It takes up less space and can be stored in a corner of the apartment. While it is a bit more portable, this is one heavy bike. The bike weighs around 75 lbs, and this is not something you’d like to carry up flights of stairs. It easily fits into most trunks though. You don’t have to mess with mounting bike racks to your car.
The Wallke’s body is made out of high-quality 6061 aluminum; it’s both tough and lightweight folding bike. While it might look a bit unorthodox, it’s stable, sturdy and doesn’t wobble when ridden. While it didn’t bother us, some people didn’t like the fact that you can’t remove the decals from the bike. The bike uses hydraulic brakes which were a joy to use, they were smooth and strong. They might require some setting up, and if you don’t know how to set them up visit your closest bike shop.
As for the electronics, it uses the well-known Samsung 48 V 10.4 Ah LiPo battery; like most other bikes in this price range, and other PEVs. The range is about 37 miles with pedal-assist, and about 12 miles with just the throttle. The Wallke has a 750 W brushless hub motor, and it fares alright on uphills. Wallke made a good choice with the motor, as the 750 W hub motor is legal to use on most roads in the world. You’ll get all your information at a glance, the LCD screen is easy to use. It has a rechargeable phone holder and a bike horn.
In conclusion, this is a fine bike. It offers something that no other bike on this list has, and has a few features that most other bikes at this price point don’t offer. A great, budget-friendly, middle-of-the-road option for anyone interested in cruising down a sandy beach or a commute in the snow.
The Ecotric E-Bike made the list not by being the best, but by being the cheapest electric bike we’d be comfortable to ride on a hunting trip. This is the single best budget option for an aspiring e-biker, no matter the purpose of the bike. It’s a good commuting bike, a decent trail bike, a decent hunting/wilderness bike, and anything in between (including a beach and snow bike).
All the other bikes we’ve reviewed can do everything the Ecotric can, and they’ll often do it faster and better. But they’ll never reach this level of affordability. It has a 500 W brushless rear motor, which is simple to maintain and relatively powerful. It’s powered by a 36 V / 12 Ah battery, which has a lower voltage than any other bike on this list. This means it has a lower top speed, but that’s not the most important stat on a hunting e-bike. Unlike the other bikes on the list, the Ecotric has a max weight of 260 lbs; it’s a bit less than we’d like, but if you’re not going after big game, this is an acceptable max load.
In the end, we’re really pleased with this e-bike, and it took all the abuse we threw at it. It’s a great entry-level, gateway bike that you can use to gauge how much you like using an e-bike to hunt. If you find that e-bikes for hunting aren’t your thing, this bike is easily a decent off-road or commuting bike, and you can offload it on a family member or friend. If you’re pleased with how it works, you can buy a better version later on.
The fat tires are extremely comfortable; if you’ve never ridden one you won’t believe how dream-like it is to ride one. They can also traverse any terrain, including sand and snow which would bog down regular tire-width bikes. This is why they’re often called “beach bikes” or “snow bikes”. If you’ve tried riding a regular mountain bike on snow, sand or ice, you’d most likely crash.
On the other hand, thinner and lighter tires allow you to reach a higher top speed. There’s less friction you have to combat with thinner wheels. That’s why all those professional cycling bikes have very narrow tires.
Regular electric mountain bikes can be used for hunting or hauling camping gear if you have a lighter load and don’t need as much range, but hunting e-bikes have more range and maximum carry weight. There are also accessories marketed towards increasing how much they can carry: saddle-bags, racks, trailers and other accessories that make planning out a hunting trip a lot easier. Regular mountain e-bikes can’t carry that much weight, but if you stay within the weight limit you’ll be okay.
The good news is that almost every fat tire bike on the market has a maximum weight load of about 260 lbs, and the best ones can go up to 350 lbs.
Fat-tire bikes are harder to ride than regular bikes; due to the added weight and width of their tires. If we had to pin a number, they might be just 5% harder to power than regular bikes. Electric fat-tire bikes not only assist you in pedaling, but can also engage the throttle to make it easier for you.
There’s virtually no difference between fat-tire and regular-tire electric bikes; the added motors take care of any added effort you’ll need to ride. Theoretically, the 5% we assumed might translate into regular tire e-bikes having 5% more range.
The fat tire bikes are actually easier to handle and control in most conditions. While they do look cumbersome, they turn like a dream and are easier to control. They also balance themselves out (gyroscope) better. If you’ve never ridden a bike or have a kid that’s just learning, a fat tire electric bike is a bit easier to learn to ride than a regular one.
While we do not recommend it, they are easier to ride no-handed than regular bikes. Please practice caution and wear safety gear.
Yes, e-bikes of any kind are actually great for exercise. We wrote a blog post about e-biking and health. In short, while most people believe that they don’t make you work hard enough, you’ll end up only working 5% less and crossing a lot more distance with a fat tire electric bike compared to a regular one. The added benefit is that many more people that might not use a regular bike due to an injury can easily use an electric one.
There are advantages and drawbacks to each. For pure performance, ultra mid drive motors are the strongest ones out there. They offer exceptional torque and very precise electric control. They’re also the most expensive option out there. Bafang usually makes ultra mid-drive motors, and they’re a quality, well-trusted brand.
Mid drive motors are a step below ultra mid drives. They have a motor housed in between the pedals, and use the chain to propel the bike forwards. They have a lot more torque than hub motors, and are often of higher quality. They’re durable, but they’re at the forefront of most impacts on a trail, which means that they’ll often have a shorter lifespan than a hub motor. They also require maintenance and a precise chain-to-gear ratio. DIY bike builders often make the mistake of buying a mid-drive motor with the wrong ratio and can’t use all their gears, or in some cases destroy their bike.
Hub motors are the cheapest and easiest option out there. They’re usually waterproof, and you don’t have to worry about gear ratios or anything. They’re plug and play, and are the most used type of motor used in e-bike conversion kits. They’re a great option for a beginner, or for someone that wants to save a bit of money. Their downside is that they offer lower torque, meaning that hills are harder to climb. Most hub-motors are installed on the rear wheel for better torque and control.
There’s a problem with manufacturers listing different ranges, and the overarching problem of measuring how long the pedal-assist mode lasts. Most electric bikes (fat and regular ones) have a throttle-only range of about 10-15 miles, like most small electric scooters. This range also depends heavily on the weight of the rider and any extra gear (such as groceries, hunting or camping gear or photography gear) on the bike.
Most pedal-assisted bikes will reach at least 25 miles, with some help from you working the pedals. E-bikes have different pedal-assist settings and manufacturers often don’t take these into account, but in short we’d say that e-bikes with batteries of around 10 Ah will give you from 25-30 miles of range. Heavier, bulkier batteries with more capacity will naturally give you a lot more range.