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Winter Cycling Don't let snow and ice discourage you this winter. The key element to year-round cycling is proper attire! Check out this winter cycling forum to chat with other ice bike fanatics.

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Old 11-12-05, 04:01 PM   #1
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How do all of you in hill/mountain country deal with sweat-inducing ascents followed by wind-chilling descents?

Up here in the New England hills I find myself in a world of fire and ice - either I'm climbing a 12% grade trying to unzip every vent and cuff, cursing my balaclava, or I am flying down the backside with a 38 MPH windchill getting aero not for the speed, but to stop the bitter assault!
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Old 11-12-05, 04:43 PM   #2
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Thin layers of fleece with a breathable windbreaker on top will HELP move the sweat away from your body. It feels more comfortable to me when sweaty than one thick layer.

If you have to stop and unzip at the bottom of a hill do it. If you have to stop to zip up at the top stop and do it right.

If you are seriously too cold, go down hill very slowly and keep your feet moving to create heat. If you are getting too hot or too sweaty climb at a slower pace, it helps you dry off for a while.

A mtb is warmer in the cold than a road bike. If you have one ride off road in the cold instead of on the road. It is MUCH warmer.

The most effective one is the MTB off road. The others help but don't really fix the problem.

Actually the best one is ride in Rhode Island it's flater..
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Old 11-12-05, 05:38 PM   #3
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wool base layer. Ventilation. No waterproofs when its snowing or intermittent wet precip. Pertex, Epic, Schoeller or other softshells instead.
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Old 11-12-05, 06:18 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Bekologist
wool base layer. Ventilation. No waterproofs when its snowing or intermittent wet precip. Pertex, Epic, Schoeller or other softshells instead.
The best advice I've gotten on this site is the wool base layer for the ups and downs. Thanks, bekologist.
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Old 11-14-05, 05:18 AM   #5
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Wear a fleece (esp a sleeveless one) on top of your windproof on descents. It is much quicker to add/remove.
Use a windproof outer and jersey with a long front zip.
Get a bike with a wide range of gears so you can climb at lower intensity and sweat less.
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Old 11-14-05, 09:50 AM   #6
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wool is great as an undergarment but you also need to block the wind in front and vent the entire back. vest and jackets that have mesh backs are great. Pants; I wear sporthill XC (very cold conditions) and sporthill voyager pants above freezing. These pants block the wind and vent well.
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Old 11-14-05, 09:54 AM   #7
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I continue to climb even when it gets cold (-5c). When going up I wear a cold weather bib (it protects the legs and the stomach area when I am hunched on my bike), one long sleaved jersey (some sort of microfibre that evacuates the sweat to the outside) that I also use for xc skiing, one wind blocking jacket completely unzipped. Once the climb is over, I stop and put on either an extra layer of a dry sleaveless wind blocking fleece or simply newspaper, zip the jacket and down I go. Never felt the sting of cold except the hands. So far the only gloves that works for me are my downhill skiing gloves but they are just too cobersome. Anyone got good ideas for the hands?

edit : Sorry, I just read the glove thread. Forget the last question.
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