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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 11-05-07, 11:38 PM   #26
Sixty Fiver
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"What do you people do in high winds? they are a pain to ride in."

Suffer.
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Old 11-05-07, 11:52 PM   #27
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Too hot in July and August? Dude, I grew up in Ballston Lake and I don't ever remember it being too hot in the summer. In fact, I don't remember it ever going above 80. Now, the black flies, that's a different story. We pretty much rode all year long, except when the snow got really deep. Really deep there is above six feet.

I live in Milwaukee now, which is gets dammed cold in the winter. In fact, sometimes in January we are colder than Alaska. Windchills can go to 60 below farenheit here. To be fair, normal winters the temp ranges from about 10 below to the high 20s. The problem here is the wind. We had gusts of 55 mph today with a falling temp.

What do you people do in high winds? they are a pain to ride in.
Wind makes all the difference. -15 or even lower is no problem if it's calm. Part of the reason I'm considering more of a road bike/hybrid as opposed to the mountain bike I have been using is that I remember too many days where it felt I could hardly make any forward progress due to high winds.
At least riding in the drops on a road bike I wouldn't be as much of a nylon/lycra parachute.
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Old 11-06-07, 02:19 AM   #28
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Oh, definitely. A few days ago I was thinking the same thing. Mash down on the pedal in lowest gear to try to make headway going downhill late two-thirds of the 7 miles to a training seminar gritting my teeth and thinking 'Need to get a bent.. a low bent.. and like, a small windshell..'
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Old 11-06-07, 01:19 PM   #29
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What do you people do in high winds? they are a pain to ride in.
Sometimes you just have to get off and push. I encounted a northern wind last season coming through a gap between two buildings. It was so powerful and sustained I wasn't moving forward in spite of great effort. I had to laugh and just walk through it.

Getting off and man hauling is always an option in the icy season.
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Old 11-08-07, 08:14 PM   #30
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I commuted 12 winters in Ottawa(40km round trip).+40 to -40 I'd ride it all.At least you can dress for -40.I would ride in snow storms,freezing rain.I enjoy how it challenges your riding ability.Really helps work on balance riding in icey conditions.The last winter I rode,I never went down once.Quite an accomplishment since it usually happens a couple of times.
I now live outside the city,way outside.So my commuting has changed quite a bit.Rural cycling is interesting but I'll leave that for another thread.44 days til the shortest day then it's bring on Spring.Ride on.TBG
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Old 11-08-07, 09:13 PM   #31
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My solution to high winds and my other winter commuter... it's a 1999 Trek 7500 Multitrack hybrid that I converted into what I would describe as a monster cross bike.

It now has a stiffer and stronger mtb drivetrain and runs a 2 by 8 drive that has a gear range from 29 to 109 gear inches...shifting duties are being handled marvelously by some vintage Suntour Barcon bar end shifters

The V brakes were replaced with Shimano cantis and Kool Stop salmon pads to give me the best stopping power possible in any conditions... the change to the Ritchey ergo bars required the change in brakes

The tyres are 700:35 Schwalbe CX Comp cross tyres and the bike hauls some serious ass on the road and is also able to handle light single track riding and has an astoundingly nice ride.



The salmon coloured cork is now covered with blue grey cloth tape... I loved the colour but that cork would end up looking like crap on no time and the cork was bought more for function than fashion.

My cloth tape is Renfrew hockey tape... it's as good a quality as Cat Eye cloth and you get 3 times as much for the same price and it is designed to be used in cold weather.
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Old 11-08-07, 09:28 PM   #32
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Nice winter biike!No fenders?My winter bike is a generic mtn bike I pulled out of the garbage and threw on a set of fenders,and changed the handlebars.Nothing fancy but it runs ok.I build a bike for the winter because by spring it's usually trashed.Why wreck the good stuff,eh?
As for riding into the wind,that's when(and I'm not ashamed to admit it)I use the granny gear.

Last edited by thebikeguy; 11-10-07 at 04:25 PM.
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Old 11-08-07, 09:37 PM   #33
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My riding gear protects me from most of the slush and road cocktails but I am looking for the right fenders for this bike...I'll probably opt for some quick release models as the bike does see some off road use.
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Old 11-09-07, 07:37 AM   #34
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So who else will be riding where it gets REALLY cold ?
I do. Upper Peninsula of Michigan, just a few blocks from Lake Superior. I can't match your -40, but we do get plenty of snow, and it does get cold here. I clearly remember riding in below zero weather a few days last year, but it was probably only in the -5 to -15 neighborhood. I've seen -20ish once or twice in years past. I don't recall ever seeing -40 in my life.

I actually don't pay much attention to the numeric temperature. I just step outside to get a feel for how cold and windy it is on any given day. Then I go from there. My guess is that the teens and the low 20s are the more common temps that I ride in. I do think of where I live as a place that gets "serious" winter.
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Old 11-09-07, 08:05 AM   #35
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I feel like I've never known cold reading these stories. The coldest I've experienced in UK is -8C with 22mph wind. I get the temperature from a probe outside our window rather than off the tv or internet as they are always way out from where I am. I would like to see it get a bit colder this year so I can test out my windstopper a bit.
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Old 11-09-07, 08:10 AM   #36
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I've just remembered a job I had at a bacon factory which had a chill blast room that was between -18C and -22C which felt really cold on an open forklift truck at 10mph, but then again I was just sitting there doing no excercise so I could only do it for 30 minutes at a time. Then I would go outside where it was -2C to warm up.
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Old 11-09-07, 09:09 AM   #37
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Originally Posted by Ozrider View Post
Too hot in July and August? Dude, I grew up in Ballston Lake and I don't ever remember it being too hot in the summer. In fact, I don't remember it ever going above 80. Now, the black flies, that's a different story. We pretty much rode all year long, except when the snow got really deep. Really deep there is above six feet.

I live in Milwaukee now, which is gets dammed cold in the winter. In fact, sometimes in January we are colder than Alaska. Windchills can go to 60 below farenheit here. To be fair, normal winters the temp ranges from about 10 below to the high 20s. The problem here is the wind. We had gusts of 55 mph today with a falling temp.

What do you people do in high winds? they are a pain to ride in.
Are you serious? It's not uncommon for the temps to hit mid to high 90s in the summer, and with the humidity, it gets brutal. Certainly not too hot to ride, but it does get hot.
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Old 11-09-07, 12:59 PM   #38
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I'll be riding through my first winter this year. I do live in the Buffalo NY area so we get plenty of lake effect snow. It tends to only be in the single digits for a few morning each year (maybe a week or two). Most of the time it tends to be a bit below freezing. The biggest issue will be dealing with the snow banks and making sure there is enough room on the road to ride with reasonable safety.

Happy riding,
André
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Old 11-09-07, 02:05 PM   #39
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MN rider here. Recreation on the weekends with my cyclocross bike and frozen lakes
and trails with my Surly Pugsley. During the week, try to commute most every day.
Using the cyclocross or my rigid fork mtb.
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Old 11-09-07, 04:38 PM   #40
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MN rider here. Recreation on the weekends with my cyclocross bike and frozen lakes
and trails with my Surly Pugsley. During the week, try to commute most every day.
Using the cyclocross or my rigid fork mtb.
I'm another MN rider. Just curious which bike you use for commuting under which conditions. I have an MTB
that I've used all the time in the past. It's got big fat studded tires. It's fine for ice, -not so fine for slop where it floats and slides on top. It's also tiring for longer distances.
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Old 11-09-07, 07:59 PM   #41
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I've had a couple of seasons where I rode straight though but that was a while ago. Feels positively tropical here in Massachusetts compared to most of you!
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Old 11-09-07, 08:35 PM   #42
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Too hot in July and August? Dude, I grew up in Ballston Lake and I don't ever remember it being too hot in the summer. In fact, I don't remember it ever going above 80. Now, the black flies, that's a different story. We pretty much rode all year long, except when the snow got really deep. Really deep there is above six feet. .......

What do you people do in high winds? they are a pain to ride in.
We have been getting alot of 90's here the last few years, must be that global warming thang. This year it was the 100% humidity most days between June and September that really sucked.

Winter winds aren't a problem most days I wear windproof pants, nylon ski pullover, balaclava, ski goggles and gloves.
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Old 11-12-07, 03:16 PM   #43
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I'm another MN rider. Just curious which bike you use for commuting under which conditions. I have an MTB
that I've used all the time in the past. It's got big fat studded tires. It's fine for ice, -not so fine for slop where it floats and slides on top. It's also tiring for longer distances.
I use my cyclocross bike(2000 Jake the Snake) with Michelin Cyclocross Mud tires for
light snow and dryconditions. If it gets icy, I have a Nokian studded tire for the front. I use my hardtail
MTB for when there is two or three inches of new snow. I have a Nokian studded tire on the front as well, so also for a ice storm type of weather I also use the MTB. Hope that helps.
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Old 11-12-07, 04:13 PM   #44
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I'm another MN rider. Just curious which bike you use for commuting under which conditions. I have an MTB
that I've used all the time in the past. It's got big fat studded tires. It's fine for ice, -not so fine for slop where it floats and slides on top. It's also tiring for longer distances.
I'm using my Specialized Expedition hybrid this winter, have inverts on it now but have a set of studs for ice..
Whole rig is 1 - 2 mph slower than my regular commuter but hope it works well on ice/snow..have 10 miles each way mostly hills..St Paul to Eagan MN.

Wind? I just go to granny and go slower..high winds or gusts in the forecast and I drive...hate to go backwards or get blown over....
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Old 11-13-07, 09:43 AM   #45
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I am in Hibbing, MN. Last year I studded up some tires and did laps on the lake.
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Old 11-26-07, 11:51 AM   #46
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The thing about really really cold weather is that its pretty unlikely the wind will blow when it gets down below -40F, the reason it gets to -40F is that some super cold air is stalled and sits in one place, if the wind would blow it would actually get warmer.

A little prep and its not too difficult to get along when its silly cold but things do tend to break more, metal things.

This winter has been a piece of cake so far, about 1 foot of snow on the ground and moderate temps
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Old 11-26-07, 06:28 PM   #47
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St. Cloud, MN here.
Riding a Bianchi Milano. Second winter, going a shorter distance though.
Can't wait!
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Old 11-26-07, 06:40 PM   #48
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i find it interesting that a lot of you are from the states, and hardly anyone from say, toronto like me (which is about the same latitude)... from my perspective, "north" starts about 5 hours from here.
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Old 11-26-07, 10:34 PM   #49
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Hit -36 celcius in Saskatoon today. Wasn't too bad though, not too much snw so the ride is still pretty fast. They are talking about 5cm of snow tomorrow so it should be a fun ride.
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Old 11-27-07, 01:09 AM   #50
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Winter has finally hit us although we aren't as cold as the guys just east of us...

On the ride home it was -17 C with a wind chill making it like -27 and thankfully...the wind was at my back for the 10 km I rode.

The coolest thing (no pun intended) was that the bike co-op I volunteer at was really busy despite the cold.
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