Kalispell bike shop sees a rise in purchases during coronavirus pandemic

Posted at 2:53 PM, Jul 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-17 20:31:32-04

KALISPELL — Hans Axelsen is the owner operator of Wheaton's Cycle in Kalispell and told MTN that at the beginning of the coronavirus shut down bike sales were high.

"With team sports being canceled and people locked down a lot of people jumped on board this spring so sales were very strong," said Axelsen.

However, he explained to MTN that the national popularity of bikes, is creating shortages in some areas.

"There's not a lot of bicycles to order and it's difficult to get bikes back in stock," he said. "And so people are repairing lots of bicycles."

Mechanic David Cummings told MTN that he's seen an increase in people bringing in their old bikes to get them repaired.

"If they can't get a new bike that fits them, they bring in their old bike to get refurbished so they can ride," he said.

Axelsen told MTN that because of the virus, this year Wheaton's chose not to supply bike rentals.

"We were also worried about hygiene issues," he said. "As far as lending out helmets, having to clean helmets, saddles, handlebar tape on road bikes would get sweated out and how to deal with and clean those issues."

Both Axelsen and Cummings told MTN that they've seen plenty of first time bike riders.

Cummings has a suggestion for those interested in getting back on a bike.

"Make sure you keep your chain oiled, make sure your breaks are working, make sure you got pressure in your tires."

Because of the shortage of bikes and bike parts Axelsen Wheaton's is waiting to see how this fall will be in terms of sales.

Wheaton's Cycle in Kalispell is open on Tuesday through Friday 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM and Saturday from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM.

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