Where’s the winter cycling thread?

I searched but I couldn’t find one.
Well, it’s certainly winter in Chicago!


Trainer with zwift.jpg

I got caught in a hard downpour last night with a bunch of lightning and thunder. Very rare PNW conditions but nice way to kick off the wet season.

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it was unexpectedly icy this morning!
also just like last year, the oak leaves are falling SUPER late so there are huge mounds on the sides of the streets that are leaves covered in snow
i figure they are soft to fall on if i crash? but also they take up a lot of the street

Yesterday there were sheets of ice on the Lakefront Trail that looked super sketchy, but I was able to ride across them with no problem. I came across a dude who had crashed on one of them. He said he was ok but was in the process of calling wife flight.
I got passed by a dude on a Giant ebike who said, “Yo, you rollin regular rubber?” and then said nothing when I answered in the affirmative.
Then I got passed by another dude on an ebike who was going like 35 mph and said nothing as he passed.

The cold season weather pattern is happening in Richmond VA now: a few raw, cold, windy, sunny days, followed by a slightly warmer few days with some rain. In a month or so, the rain will swap for snow a couple of times.
I think I’ve got a decent apparel setup for 75-150 minute rides down to about 35f. Lots of remaindered Castelli winter stuff snagged off of Backcountry over the last few years (their Emergency Jacket is great, and pretty cheap to boot), some neoprene shoe covers.
I’m going to try lining the inside of my shoes with Mylar foil this winter. Last winter I tried using it as a barrier under my insoles, and it wasn’t amazing. Probably keeping it closer to a heat source (my flesh and blood) will make it work better?

Reading the above posts makes me thankful that I don’t have to deal with Great Lakes winters. Richmond gets sort of icy for a day or two, but nothing like the months on end of playing “black ice or just weird reflection” that I’ve had to do in past.

I set up my little black desk fan at work for winter duty.
I have a anti-static cardboard box setup on the storage shelf / closet at my cubicle so I can use push-pins & binder clips to hang up my wet gloves / jacket / rainlegs / cap under the fan.
Seems to work pretty well, glad these new Shower’s Pass gloves are quick dry and seem to evaporate faster than the cheap work gloves i’ve used in years past.

That’s pretty slick. My current setup this morning (18f) is as follows:
Balaclava+wool cap under my helmet.
Thick wool jersey under a Showers Pass shell.
Seirus Xtreme brand waterproof gloves (fairly thin for dexterity) under pogies.
Wool long johns under Swrve WWR pants.
Wool socks under Lake or 45NRTH boots.


I haven’t had real winter in 3 years now
rode in the snow in Boulder a few weeks ago and it was a blast
and then it was 60 and sunny again the next day :colbert:

Also, I just bought one of these crazy things:

Claimed weight is 296g. I don’t believe it as that’s about what my airnet weighs lol.

The windshield on my new dork helmet has been amazing in the rain so far.
It functions the way that I think all cycling cap brims should theoretically work. I don’t even need to fully drop it down and it keeps 100% of the water off my glasses and seems to allow better visibility despite there being a second sheet of clear plastic with water droplets obscuring (must be optical depth magic?). Seems to clean up well with a periodic finger wiping then when I arrive at my destination I don’t need to spend a few minutes wiping my glasses.

I have a set of panaracer paselas that I might put on the grando for weather days.

The hetres don’t like ice and snow.

55F this morning. Wore jeans and a wool jersey but didn’t need the puffy vest today

Not on a bicycle, but when I was motorcycling back from Big Bend we hit some atrocious weather. I’ve probably ridden a motorcycle in colder weather but not for 7 hours. I had on a puffy jacket, puffy vest, thick flannel shirt, light wool sweater, base layer, thermal undies, softshell thermal tights, jeans, thick wool socks, waterproof boots, waterproof spacesuit, giant windshield, heated grips, and still got cut so bad by the wind that I spent the whole day freezing my ass off. The wind was terrible, it was in the mid-high 30s all day, occasional drizzle, and it just sucked sucked sucked.

The plus side is now I feel invincible again!

We got a nice layer put down on Sunday, and there’s still ice all over the place. Initially I was stoked, thinking my new city goes easy on the salt, but apparently they are just slow on the draw. Almost got the Crosscheck ready for geared winter duty…

Got the first real snow of the season last night, about an inch or so. This morning on the way in there was no plowing and temps were around the balmy mid 20s, so got the first taste of riding in on fresh, party compacted greasy snow on every side street. It took me about a mile to get used to the feeling – the snow itself has plenty of grip (interlocking crystals?), but the pack “breaks” when you move the tires to quickly in any direction. So both wheels can be moving freely at the same time, but since the snow is so grippy you don’t feel like you’re losing traction at all. And the the pack under your tires “connects” again and you’re good. It was probably the most fun I’ve had on the bike in a while, heaving the bike around a little all the time to keep the momentum up. But then I’d hit a hardback section and then it’s just lost traction.

Temps are balmy for most of the rest of the week, with a perplexing thunderstorms/three inches of snow coming this weekend, so I’m holding off on the spikes for now. But next week we’re getting more snow with a sharp drop into 3 degree lows in the late week so probably put them on then as all this pack is going to turn into ice ridge hell and then turn into the weird looking frozen sludge that creeps around the edges of every street in a disturbingly organic way.

Still need some better winter boots for my feet, and now’s really the time to get them. Also I got a different, thicker balaclava and I hate it. Going back to thin one.

The other neat thing this winter is I ride along an idyllic creek for several miles of my commute and I have been enjoying seeing how the ice formation ebbs and flows with the wildly fluctuating temperatures of a late fall in Minnesota. It’s a really lovely way to start a work day.

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Are you in south Mpls? Minnehaha parkway? (When I was trapped in the Twin Cities 30 years ago that was part of my 40 mile loop around the city.)

Yeah, we’re just south of Diamond Lake. I work in Linden Hills, so I hit the Minnehaha Creek Tail and follow that for a few miles to Lake Harriet and ride the southern portion of that as well. Top Five Urban Commute material for sure.

Are you from the TC?

Wisconsin; born in Milwaukee, grew up in La Crosse, got my first couple of jobs in the Twin Cities. Bike riding was the nicest thing about living up there.

Got four inches of snow today and looks like subfreezing to near zero for a while, so put on the spiky tires. Then tested them out by riding around the neighborhood: