About Alpine Skibikes, Inc.
Alpine Skibikes, Inc., is jointly owned and operated by Army Veteran Renee Hanson and her husband Matt, and is the premier designer and manufacturer of snow-sport bicycle conversion kits. Founded in 2001 in Los Angeles by inventor and snow-riding enthusiast Matt Hanson. Alpine Skibikes, Inc. (formerly Winter-X-Bike, Inc.) unveiled its revolutionary Ski-MX Conversion Kit, which turns any bicycle into a ski-bike, in early 2002. Complete with foot-pegs and removable ski-boards, the Ski-MX Conversion Kit retails for $758.97. Visit Alpine Skibikes, Inc. at www.AlpineSkibikes.com for details.
Here is our press release from 2002 that tells the whole story of our origins:
No Johnny Come Lately, Winter-X-Bike’s Time is Now
Ski-Bike Conversion Kit the Result of More Than 20 Years of Creative Thought
LOS ANGELES – May 22, 2002 -- In today’s fast-paced world of adventure sports, merging two or more different activities into one has become the norm. But it was more than 20 years ago that Matt Hanson, President and Founder of Winter-X-Bike, Inc., had an idea about combining his two favorite sports: BMX racing and downhill skiing.
It Came From the Basement
A way there was, and now, more than 20 years later, Hanson’s idea has become a business. Winter-X-Bike, Inc. became Alpine Skibikes Inc. in 2010 and took on a new partner; Matt's wife Renee. Alpine Skibikes is now the premier manufacturer of ski-bike conversion kits, offering products that turn any bike into a ski-bike for use on the snow at major ski resorts.
And to be sure, the Ski-MX Conversion Kit™ has come a long way from its humble beginnings in Hanson’s basement two decades ago. Back then, Hanson used simple blocks of wood and old truncated skis to create the first prototype for what would become this innovative new product. Now, instead of wood blocks and old skis, the Alpine Skibikes Ski-MX Conversion Kit is a stylized product, manufactured from high-quality, aircraft-grade aluminum and mounted on a cutting-edge ski-board design.
“When you combine this kit with the technology of today’s existing mountain bikes and BMX bikes, you create the highest-performance ski-bikes available in the world right now,” Hanson says. The kit retails, complete with removable ski-boards, for $758.97.
Not Just for the Sledding Hill Anymore
A far-out concept for some, ski-biking has always been the thing to do for Hanson when the snow comes.
“At first, I just rode it around on the sledding hill,” says Hanson, who’s been skiing since age four. “For me, every winter when I’d go out in the snow with the kids from the neighborhood, that was my sled. That’s how it all started.”
No longer relegated only to the neighborhood sledding hill, there are now more than 50 resorts in the U.S. and Canada that allow ski-biking, and that number grows every year.
Converting a bike is easy, and takes about twenty minutes. First, riders simply remove the wheels and cranks from their bikes. Then, they pop the ski brackets of the Alpine Skibikes Ski-MX Conversion Kit into the bike forks, and slide the foot-pegs through the crank housing.
Helping Create a Brand New Sport
By pursuing his childhood passion to launch Alpine Skibikes, Inc., Hanson has helped develop a whole new sport in the form of free-style ski-biking. While traditional ski-bikes have been around for decades, they require riders to wear short skis on their feet. But with the Alpine Skibikes Ski-MX Conversion Kit’s foot-pegs, riders where boots and can actually stand up on their bikes while carving through the snow – or flying through the air.
“When you’re wearing foot skis, it’s hard to land big air,” says Hanson. “It doesn’t work out very well. But with the foot pegs, it’s more like Motocross riding, more like BMX racing. It’s killer.”
Carrying the bikes on the ski-lifts is easy, especially with today’s advanced, high-speed quad lifts.
“I believe the only reason that ski-bikes were originally developed with foot skis was because you had to have skis on your feet to ride the lift,” Hanson says. “That became the norm and nobody questioned it. But with today’s high-speed quads, which actually slow down to let you hop on, skis aren’t necessary. So when we designed the Alpine Skibikes Ski-MX Conversion Kit, we stuck true to the original idea of riding our bikes down the sledding hill: we thought this could be more like riding an actual bike.”
A Sport That Anyone Can Master
For that reason, the Alpine Skibikes Ski-MX Conversion Kit isn’t just about getting big air. Because the kit transforms any bike into a ski-bike and allows riders to maintain the same stance and position they’re accustomed to on their own bikes, many participants find the activity surprisingly easy.
“These bikes are very easy to ride. They’re not strenuous and you don’t have to learn a complete new set of skills to master it,” Hanson says. “Anyone who has mastered riding a bike on the street already has the skills to do this. It’s really a sport that’s open to anyone.”
Perhaps most indicative of its basement beginnings is the Alpine Skibikes Ski-MX Conversion Kit’s low price. While traditional ski-bikes start at $1300.00 dollars, the Alpine Skibikes Ski-MX Conversion Kit’s suggested retail price of just $758.97, complete with removable ski-boards, makes it a compelling bargain for anyone. Interested riders can get their kits online at AlpineSkibikes.com, or inquire at their local bicycle or ski shop.
From its ease of use to its low price, twenty years later, the Alpine Skibikes Ski-MX Conversion Kit is simply an idea whose time has come.