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Snow, Ice and...SUN!

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Snow, Ice and...SUN!

Old 10-31-19, 03:16 PM
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BobbyG
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Snow, Ice and...SUN!

One more quick snow and ice ride commute video. This morning's ride and this time with plenty of sun!
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Old 10-31-19, 07:24 PM
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Do you have studded tires on your bike? How cold was the temperature? What is your speed difference between today and a good day. What tips do you have for others that want to commute in the winter? How long is your commute in distance and time?
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Old 10-31-19, 08:10 PM
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Originally Posted by alloo View Post
Do you have studded tires on your bike? How cold was the temperature? What is your speed difference between today and a good day. What tips do you have for others that want to commute in the winter? How long is your commute in distance and time?
Suomi Nokian W-106 studded snow tires.

My routes average 9 miles and take about 40 minutes on dry pavement at an average speed of 13 to 14 miles an hour. With the studded snow tires on the dry pavement it takes 45 minutes. And in the snow it can take 50 minutes or more depending. On the way home it is uphill and takes about 10 minutes more. I forgot the exact time into the office Monday, but I do remember it took me 58 minutes to get home on completely snow covered streets.

Today's ride home was on 95% dry streets and took about 5 minutes more.

I always take special note of your posts because you're up in Denver. We get pretty much the same weather as you, except Colorado Springs gets half the precipitation as Denver.

You can see Monday's snow ride here:

https://www.bikeforums.net/commuting...w-success.html
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Old 11-01-19, 02:50 AM
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You're more hard core than me. I stopped riding on Friday, but might start back up on Monday. I don't have studded tires and ride and ebike. Since this is my first year, I am experimenting with winter gear. Funny thing is that it's colder on the scooter, but since my route is different I have to be a little more cautious on the ebike. Usually it takes 2 days of 40+ F to melt off, not sure with this storm. I'm catching the bus to work. I rode my regular bike yesterday, a little too early yesterday, but saw things improve in the afternoon. My primary route is still snow covered. Thanks for the inspiration.
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Old 11-02-19, 06:20 AM
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How do you deal with the fear of riding in the cold?
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Old 11-02-19, 07:30 AM
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Originally Posted by alloo View Post
You're more hard core than me.
Originally Posted by alloo View Post
How do you deal with the fear of riding in the cold?
I don't think of myself as hardcore. I just made small incremental advances and improvements in my cold-weather riding. The studded tires help greatly compared to smooth road tires, but I used to ride in light snow with moderately treaded, but unstudded, off-road tires. Ice was still a problem though.

In my 30s I used to ride down to 10F (I think). But I over-dressed and sweated, which made me even colder. Over the years my cold-weather threshhold kept rising to 21F. (why 21F nd not 20f? I don't know).

But after discovering bikeforums and its winter and commuting forums and members (especially @Jim_from_Boston and @tsl) I learned to dress for how my body will be after it warms up about 10 or 15 minutes into the ride. And a wicking underlayer helps keep moisture away from skin. And leaving your shoes loose helps with circulation. If I hit it right, I arrive comfortably warm but without sweating. The colder it gets the more important it is to cover bare skin. I wear a light bellaclava over my face, but not a heavy one. I pushed my limit back down to 11F, then 10F, and last year 7F. This winter I plan to ride down to 5F. I read about the commuters in Toronto and Minnesota who ride below 0F, some down to -15F, but I think that's beyond my desires. Plus it rarely gets below 0F, in my part of town.

The big cold-weather advantage in Colorado is the dryness. I lived the first half of my life in the midwest, and cold, humid air is really tough.

Everybody's "thermal profile" and thermal needs are different...you just need to discover and learn what yours are for different temperatures.

As far as the "fear of riding in the cold," I am less fearfull than in the past. For one thing, I've been riding with a cell phone for 20+ years. And even though I dress lighter than I used to, I always carry an extra layer of bike clothes, socks and glove liners, in case I have mechanical problems and have to walk. Plus, I ferry my office clothes, which is pants, and in the winter usually a heavy shirt and/or sweater, so in an emergency I have those to layer with.

I commute through Colorado Springs, so I am never more than a half-mile from a business I can enter, but usually only a block or two. And in an true cold-weather emergency, I would not hesitate to knock on doors on a residential street. (Although there are a few sketchy areas now).

Just do what you're comfortable with, and make incremental advances. You have no one to answer to except yourself.

The last thing I'll mention is regarding studded snow tires. At least with the lightly studded "road" tires like I have, tire pressure is important. Higher for dry pavement, lower for ice, and even lower for fresh, loose snow.

It really is a leap of faith dressing for how warm you will be in 10 ro 15 minutes, but when you hit it right, it feels wonderful!
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Old 11-02-19, 08:45 PM
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I rode to work today. It snowed 11 in over the last two days, then two days of upper 30s to mid 40s. The ride to work was good, some roads were icy others were clear. I rode at a lower speed coasting through the snow/ice. Like someone said earlier, just ride and things fall into place.

The ride home was a little more trecherous on the bike route, I modified the route and rode the rest of the way home on surface streets. I felt more comfortable. The key is to look on the horizon and maintain your balance. The morning ride was 25 F the ride home was 35 F. Our high today was 48 F.
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Old 11-04-19, 06:24 AM
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Originally Posted by BobbyG View Post
I don't think of myself as hardcore. I just made small incremental advances and improvements in my cold-weather riding. The studded tires help greatly compared to smooth road tires, but I used to ride in light snow with moderately treaded, but unstudded, off-road tires. Ice was still a problem though….

But after discovering bikeforums and its winter and commuting forums and members (especially @Jim_from_Boston and @tsl) I learned to dress for how my body will be after it warms up about 10 or 15 minutes into the ride

I pushed my limit back down to 11F, then 10F, and last year 7F. This winter I plan to ride down to 5F. I read about the commuters in Toronto and Minnesota who ride below 0F, some down to -15F, but I think that's beyond my desires. Plus it rarely gets below 0F, in my part of town…

As far as the "fear of riding in the cold," I am less fearfull than in the past. For one thing, I've been riding with a cell phone for 20+ years. And even though I dress lighter than I used to, I always carry an extra layer of bike clothes, socks and glove liners, in case I have mechanical problems and have to walk. Plus, I ferry my office clothes, which is pants, and in the winter usually a heavy shirt and/or sweater, so in an emergency I have those to layer with.

I commute through Colorado Springs, so I am never more than a half-mile from a business I can enter, but usually only a block or two. And in an true cold-weather emergency, I would not hesitate to knock on doors on a residential street. (Although there are a few sketchy areas now).

Just do what you're comfortable with, and make incremental advances. You have no one to answer to except yourself.

The last thing I'll mention is regarding studded snow tires. At least with the lightly studded "road" tires like I have, tire pressure is important. Higher for dry pavement, lower for ice, and even lower for fresh, loose snow.

It really is a leap of faith dressing for how warm you will be in 10 ro 15 minutes, but when you hit it right, it feels wonderful!
Hi @BobbyG,

Thanks for the MENTION; I just saw it this morning. For some reason, the PC I post from does not show mentions in posts, and not even mentions and quotes by me in my profile. So I did LIKE your post before seeing the MENTION…Really.

10+ to @tsl as a Winter Cycling Guru. A memorable post by him convinced me to get studded tires even for seemingly dry roads.
Originally Posted by qcpmsame View Post
^^^, what he said, tsl in the leading cycling sartorial expert for cold weather riding. Listen to what that man tells you….
Originally Posted by tsl View Post
…. Here in Rochester, at least along my commute, there's always ice that miraculously didn't get salted…Broken bones would keep me off the bike for weeks while they mend
Nice review of your winter cycling experiences, so similar to mine. I too winnowed my temperature limits downward.
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston View Post
Previously, I had minimal meteorologic limits to ride. Over the years my low temperature limit gradually diminished from 20 F to 15, then none. My lowest temperature has been 0F for the one hour and 10 minute ride.

Otherwise I avoided drenching rain and/or lightning that I did not have time to wait out. From other posts on the subject, I suppose that a wind speed of over 40 mph might be risky, because variable gusts of wind might push me into traffic. I have never encountered that yet, without rain to put off the ride…
Regarding fear of the cold, I posted (link) a series of replies to @alloo ‘s recent separate post on the Winter Forum, “Overcoming fear of riding in the cold” including a link to a thread. “Emergency Winter Cycling Kit?.”
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