Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Winter Commuting

Brought the single-speed out for winter commuting yesterday. I could have also used my snowshoes at one point on the way home in the dark when I had to push through about eight inches of snow for a about a 100 yds to reach the yet to be completed bike trail that will take us under I-39 safely in the near future. Studded tires and Bar Mitts can make this ride very doable without a whole lot of suffering from the colds temps and icy road conditions. In the darkness a Niterider Trinewt lights up my path while multiple blinky lights keep me visible for cars approaching from behind.

My winter clothing kit consists of:

Cycling Shoes - Louis Garneau 0 Ergo Grip Winter shoes, booties if below zero.
Jacket - Craft Thermal Windstopper plus additional wind/rain shell if needed.
Tights/Pants - Craft Storm.
Gloves - Swix Lobster Mitts or Specialized Deflect w/ Bar Mitts.
Base Layers - Craft Pro Warm LS top w/ bib cycling shorts below the waist.
Socks - Smart Wool plus toe warmers if temps are in the single digit range.
Head - Balaclava plus thin skull cap, helmet and Specialized Adaptalite glasses or ski goggles.

The above list works over a wide range of temps for me and I have covered distances ranging from 5-50 miles during the central Wisconsin winters. Everybody seems to be different when it comes to winter riding. Over the years it's taken a lot of trial and error to get to a comfort level with the above items when riding during the winter months. Have fun and be safe when out on the roads this winter. Pedal on...

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