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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 01-03-05, 02:38 PM   #1
btadlock
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Had to call for a Rescue!

So, I try to get in the first ride of the new year, a late afternoon moutain bike ride, with my lights on the bike, I take off at about 3:30 pm, I make the 4+ mile, 1600 ft climb to the summit, as just as I reach the summit, I turn on the 20 watt light. Well, it was a little weak, as I finished the climb, I was glad that I grabbed my second battery on the way out the door. Once I reach the summit, and in the failing light, I change the batteries, much better light, I should be able to make may down, dodging the ice on the way down.
shortly into the desent, the headlight starts fading, FAST. 10 min from the summit and over 4 miles to go and my light is gone, my backup battery was supposed to be fully charged, guess I made a mistake. I try walking it down, but between the snow, rocks and the plentiful gray ice, I almost wipe out 3 times, I thow in the towel and grab the cell phone, ring a buddy that I ride with, ( he won't do winter/snow/ice rides!), who lives about a mile from the trail head and ask him to come meet me and help me down. As Cloudy, overcast skies block the moonlight, I find my way to clear area at one of the switchbacks and begin to wait. 26 degrees and I am certainly not dressed to sit around and wait, UnderArmour, fleece long jersery, wind shell and winter tights. At about one hour, 15 min later, my buddy shows up and we make our way down the moutain, he fell twice, I fell 3 times on the way down, the ice has gotten really bad with the warm weather that we have had lately.
Made it to the car in about an hour, cold and ready to get home.
Note to self: pack mini maglight in camelback.
Thanks for good friends.
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Old 01-03-05, 03:24 PM   #2
darkmother
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Maybe not the desired effect, but man, that makes me want to bust out my MTB and lights bad. As soon as this ground freezes, I'm hitting the trails!
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Old 01-03-05, 05:49 PM   #3
btadlock
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Originally Posted by darkmother
Maybe not the desired effect, but man, that makes me want to bust out my MTB and lights bad. As soon as this ground freezes, I'm hitting the trails!
Hey, I would never try to discourage someone else, if I did not have to go get a tux fitted, I would be back on the trail tonight, with both batteries fully charged
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Old 01-04-05, 03:03 AM   #4
Juha
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Originally Posted by btadlock
Note to self: pack mini maglight in camelback.
I suggest another note: carry additional clothing in the camelback as well. Just a fleece layer may make all the difference. I know it has saved my rear end a couple of times in the winter.

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Old 01-04-05, 02:57 PM   #5
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No cell phone?

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Old 01-04-05, 03:22 PM   #6
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I was similarly caught out just before New Year's. I left the village at 2:00 PM and headed north towards Germany on dry roads with no wind and scattered clouds.
I reached Koblenz on the Rhein when a snow squall came down from the Black Forest. I was in Zurzach and 30 km from home before I realized that I was in trouble. The snowflakes were wet and the size of 2 CHF coins. The wind was howling by this time, visibility was 10 metres and I couldn't feel my hands. Was I shifting or braking? ...couldn't tell.
I had ridden this route 150 times, and this was supposed to be a cakewalk. No cellphone, no wallet, no brain. Just a quick spin before the next holiday party.
I knew that if I kept the hammer down, I would generate the heat that I needed. I arrived home with no feeling in my hands, body shivering and my thighs lobster-red.
Another 5km and I would have been a pop-cycle (get it?)
Never had a winter-survival tale to tell while I lived in Canada, but now that I live in Switzerland, I almost perish!
Guess I've lost too much blubber.
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