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How WAS Your 2018-2019 Winter Ride?

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How WAS Your 2018-2019 Winter Ride?

Old 03-20-19, 05:41 AM
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parkbrav
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How WAS Your 2018-2019 Winter Ride?

With astronomical spring right around the corner, is it time to reflect on the 2018-2019 winter season? Or will Winter linger in your parts for a while? Any unique challenges faced? Any new obstacles overcome?
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Old 03-20-19, 05:58 AM
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rayooo
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For me, only a few outside rides this winter in the Northeast US, those were mostly trail. I was able to do a lot of indoor work to keep as fit as possible thankfully.
Just the last week or two beginning to see some warmer temps... forecast 53 deg F today! I'm getting crazy antsy to get out on the road!

'got some long rides planned this summer, 'doing the GFNew Jersey (107mi), so it's time to ride!

I put the road bike on a bit of a diet this winter, managed to get it down to 8.5kg from 9+. Won't set any lightweight records but couldn't hurt!
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Old 03-20-19, 08:30 AM
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was psyched to ride a new MTB bike & tires this winter. so was disappointed with lower than average snow & ice. rode thru only 1 good active snow storm. got in a 3hr, night ride, thru pouring rain tho. that was fun
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Old 03-20-19, 09:48 AM
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I rode less outdoors in January (1 ride) and February (2 rides + 2 out of town trips) than the previous winter. The brutal cold plus all the ice on the roads was more than I wanted to deal with. I did get serious about the stationary bike at my fitness center which helped get me ready for the two hilly rides (200K + 125K) down in Kentucky at the end of February.
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Old 03-20-19, 10:49 AM
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parkbrav
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My winter:

In terms of the weather it was cold but there was not much in the ways of precipitation. There was a big rain storm late January, I got caught in that and I had to cycle in part of that on the way home. The rain let up at like 9pm and I got out at 5pm. To my pleasant surprise, my gear was sufficient for that storm. Later in January, we caught a polar vortex.

One Friday during one particularly cold day, I left the bike out all day at the bike rack and on the way home, I caught a pothole and the rear tire blew - 10 miles out. Luckily, I had Uber pick me up and get me home safe. The next day I walked to the mechanic and got a new tube.

There was one evening that just snowed (no freezing rain or rain or slush) and I tested out my 45NRTH Xerxes studs. They did much better in the snow than on "treated snow."

In terms of challenge, I had two temp assignments in different parts of my area in NW Boston. I had one round trip of 10 miles (to connect to the bus) and another round trip of 22 miles. So it was more of a physical challenge than I'm used to (I normally bike 5 miles round trip). On Veterans Day, there was no bus home, so I had to cycle an additional 10 miles home that evening -risky but it was done. Another challenge was finding safe routes, and my routes varied as I kept experimenting with different ways to work.

A big challenge in November was getting around a major highway interchange. I ended up finding a "back door" that took me just north of that interchange that only added about 2.5 miles on the way in. Similar to that experience, when I was cycling 22 miles a day, I originally went through an industrial area that also went through a risky highway interchange (this time, with a traffic light!). I eventually found an alternative to the industrial area by going slightly to the east and curving around to the NW, which took me over three bridges over highway overpasses. So that was a "no-brainer" when I found out about that.

I marked my birthday in early February by "following" the arc of a morning rainbow.

Then I transitioned back to the 5 mile loop for the past 6 weeks or so.
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Old 03-20-19, 12:40 PM
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I'll be honest - this winter sucked.

The weather was actually good through late December, but due to some major projects at work, I managed to not have a weekend during that entire time. No rides other than transportation, and no holidays for me this year.

After that, the snow started and the temperature took a major dump. I got a few decent rides in. In a short week or so, my usual winter training hills became impassable on my winter bike, so I stuck to transportation and commuting. I'd logged only 167 (outdoor) miles for all of January, and was losing fitness fast.

In early February, I succumbed and purchased a trainer. I actually used the trainer in my freezing cold basement. In the meantime, I kept riding for transportation and commutes, but was glad that I didn't have far to go. The snow kept coming (we got about 3x normal in February), the main streets became too narrow for normal traffic, and the side streets were no longer maintained. Groceries started to become a problem, as I usually use a bike trailer (no family car) and I couldn't get the darned thing in or out of the neighborhood due to the giant piles of ice and snow. I'm not sure that a car would have helped; I had a bunch of people calling in because their cars were stuck, plowed in, or wouldn't start.

Needless to say, it's amazing to be back riding outside - on clear but sandy roads. I'm generally a fan of snow, and winter - but this year, the weather exceeded the capabilities of our local snow crews, as well as my equipment. Next winter I'll be on a job in NC, and I'll probably start complaining about the lack of "real" winter!
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Old 03-20-19, 03:18 PM
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Originally Posted by wipekitty View Post
I'll be honest - this winter sucked.
You said it!

Winter does suck in a big way as far as cycling is concerned. I still commuted by bike most days, but there were a couple of weeks when I could only get in one ride, or none at all, due to the snow, crazy wind, poor road conditions, extreme cold, or all of the above. This is pretty par for the course living here in Southern Ontario. Some years are better than others. This has been one of the worse in recent memory with constant snow and prolonged periods of extreme cold. Having to think about how the weather is going to be the upcoming day or week gives me some mild anxiety. So with spring just around the corner and the weather improving as we speak I feel a renew sense of hope and optimism, because at one point in early February when we were being bombarded with daily accumulation of snow and ice it really felt as if this was never going to end.
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Old 03-21-19, 09:20 AM
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Winter was not bad. After all these years I've finally compiled a good winter ensemble that keeps me reasonably warm even into the teen°F temps for rides in excess of 25-30 miles. I'm in southern, coastal RI and our snowfall this winter was less than half the average. Yet, although it's technically 'spring'...there's still a chance for more snow (we've gotten almost a foot in April in past years). Nevertheless, there were some cold days but that didn't hamper my ability to hit the roads too much. I hit a milestone on January 27th as I rode my 60,000th lifetime mile. (I know that many of you have way more miles. But lots of my exercise time is spent running and swimming too.) It'll be a few more weeks until I can put away the winter gear. But I'm looking forward to warmer temps and longer days.

Dan
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Old 03-21-19, 10:39 AM
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Originally Posted by _ForceD_ View Post


Winter was not bad. After all these years I've finally compiled a good winter ensemble that keeps me reasonably warm even into the teen°F temps for rides in excess of 25-30 miles. I'm in southern, coastal RI and our snowfall this winter was less than half the average. Yet, although it's technically 'spring'...there's still a chance for more snow (we've gotten almost a foot in April in past years). Nevertheless, there were some cold days but that didn't hamper my ability to hit the roads too much. I hit a milestone on January 27th as I rode my 60,000th lifetime mile. (I know that many of you have way more miles. But lots of my exercise time is spent running and swimming too.) It'll be a few more weeks until I can put away the winter gear. But I'm looking forward to warmer temps and longer days.

Dan
Amen, my brother. Might I ask, about how many miles did you log this winter?
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Old 03-21-19, 12:54 PM
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Originally Posted by parkbrav View Post
Amen, my brother. Might I ask, about how many miles did you log this winter?
"Winter" -- December 21st 2018 thru March 20th 2019...549 miles. If I count from, say, Thanksgiving add another 198 miles for a total of 747.

All outdoors on the road. Some on my "nighttime course" in the dark.

Dan
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Old 03-21-19, 02:23 PM
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It was too short for me. I spent January and part of February in Vancouver due to my father's death. While home in Toronto was enjoying snowfall, Vancouver was having spring-like temperatures so I only had half a season of winter cycling.

When I got back I had discovered one of the trail entrances was blocked by a pile of snow. The entrance of the trail was in a private parking lot so there should be a right-of-access to the trail. I had used this trail the previous two winters. It turned out there was only one pile of snow and it was strategically placed right at the entrance. I complained to the city. Then I just gave up and rode an alternate route (on the street instead of the trail).
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Old 03-21-19, 02:31 PM
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Wet, Dark, but rarely any snow, lingering past noon (on 3 occasions), cool but rarely below 1C..





...
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Old 03-21-19, 04:12 PM
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This was a great winter for riding outside this year for me, most miles I've had during winter in almost 20 years. Put studded tires on both the Fat and Plus bikes as we had more ice than snow for the first 3/4 of winter. I also purchased a better winter cycling jacket, gloves, and bib tights which kept me nice and toasty.
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Old 03-22-19, 05:29 PM
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It was a great winter for people who enjoy ice biking. Commuting was very challenging on some days due to deep snow, ice pellets and strong winds.
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Old 03-23-19, 09:47 AM
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Although the calendar says so, "winter" really isn't over, yet, for many. Early this morning we got nearly an inch of snow here in southern coastal RI. Well, maybe less than an inch, but still cold enough. Sun came out and all melted off by lunchtime.

Dan

Last edited by _ForceD_; 03-23-19 at 10:33 AM.
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