Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Commuting
Reload this Page >

2018! The “How was your commute?” thread!

Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

2018! The “How was your commute?” thread!

Reply

Old 01-18-18, 10:32 AM
  #126  
kellichou
Pedal Stompin'
 
kellichou's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 158

Bikes: 2007 Trek 7300

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 32 Post(s)
Beautiful morning, about 28F, clear and not too cold. Only patches of ice on the MUP. I dropped my car off at the mechanic, and used their key dropbox, then rode about 10mi to work. Absolutely lovely ride.

My wife got me a cycle computer for the holidays, which I love. My ride was 9.75 miles, and I averaged 11.5 mph. Not bad for my 38lb hybrid bike, rolling Marathon Plus tires! She also got me a Blitzu taillight, which is very nice--it's so bright! I zip-tied the bracket to my rear rack.

I bought as a present for myself the wool legwarmers and a cycling cap from Ibex (I'm so sad they're going out of business), and those are amazing as well. Wool is one of my favorite fabrics for riding. Warm, light, and breathable, and resists smelling gross. What's not to love?
kellichou is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-18, 10:42 AM
  #127  
Tundra_Man 
The Fat Guy In The Back
 
Tundra_Man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Sioux Falls, SD
Posts: 2,010

Bikes: '81 Panasonic Sport, '02 Giant Boulder SE, '08 Felt S32, '10 Diamondback Insight RS, '10 Windsor Clockwork, '15 Kestrel Evoke 3.0

Mentioned: 43 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 213 Post(s)
Originally Posted by arsprod View Post
And what's frustrating is when there are small areas that require the studs but most of the paths are cleared and don't (speaking for my situation!).
Yes, that's pretty common for me as well. We had our last snow on Sunday. By this morning 95% of the pavement was clear. I still rode the studs for that 5%, but it was frustratingly slow in the areas where I didn't need them.

Every spring thaw I'm tempted to switch to my hybrid and escape the slow studded tires. And it seems every spring I switch a little too early and wind up crashing on some black ice I didn't see.

They're predicting a pretty good snow this weekend, so it'll be a while before I'm off the winter bike.
__________________
Visit me at the Tundra Man Workshop
Tundra_Man is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-18, 10:51 AM
  #128  
arsprod 
Senior Member
 
arsprod's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 1,820

Bikes: Fairdale Weekender Drop, Motobecane 29LTD, Cannondale H400, Basso Coral

Mentioned: 18 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 105 Post(s)
Originally Posted by Tundra_Man View Post
Yes, that's pretty common for me as well. We had our last snow on Sunday. By this morning 95% of the pavement was clear. I still rode the studs for that 5%, but it was frustratingly slow in the areas where I didn't need them.

Every spring thaw I'm tempted to switch to my hybrid and escape the slow studded tires. And it seems every spring I switch a little too early and wind up crashing on some black ice I didn't see.

They're predicting a pretty good snow this weekend, so it'll be a while before I'm off the winter bike.
My solution is 2 sets of wheels - I can switch in 10 minutes!
__________________
I'm slow, go around
arsprod is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-18, 11:15 AM
  #129  
Tundra_Man 
The Fat Guy In The Back
 
Tundra_Man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Sioux Falls, SD
Posts: 2,010

Bikes: '81 Panasonic Sport, '02 Giant Boulder SE, '08 Felt S32, '10 Diamondback Insight RS, '10 Windsor Clockwork, '15 Kestrel Evoke 3.0

Mentioned: 43 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 213 Post(s)
Originally Posted by arsprod View Post
My solution is 2 sets of wheels - I can switch in 10 minutes!
I have multiple bikes, so there's no switchover time; I just grab either the winter bike or one without studs.

My dilemma is my dislike of how much more effort/time the ride takes on studded tires. This clouds my judgement and causes me to take a non-studded bike on days when I really should be riding studs.
__________________
Visit me at the Tundra Man Workshop
Tundra_Man is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-18, 12:26 PM
  #130  
esmith2039
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Kansas City, KS
Posts: 586
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 43 Post(s)
20 degree's and SW wind.. pretty easy! Still riding the studs, alot of ice out there. Tired of the handlebars and saddles on both bikes so ordered new setups today. Hopefully rides will be more enjoyable. My batteries are only lasting a day versus a whole week in warmer weather. Last year put them in the panniers time to put them back!
esmith2039 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-18, 12:31 PM
  #131  
mgw4jc
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Mooresville, NC (Charlotte suburb)
Posts: 1,922

Bikes: Cannondale Synapse, Trek 5000 TCT, Giant OCR

Mentioned: 26 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 187 Post(s)
The Tuesday night forecast was for about an inch or less of snow, but the system slowed down and ended up giving us a good 4+ inches of wet snow. I had to make an early airport run Wednesday morning. I was back home by 6am and it was just starting to stick to the roads. The forecast had changed by then and it looked like a full day of snow and dropping temperatures. For N. Carolina, this meant everything shut down, including my office. No work on Wednesday, and closed until 1pm today.

However, I didn't even try to ride it as I only have skinny, non-studded tires. It's just not needed often enough to purchase winter gear here. I probably won't ride tomorrow either because I saw enough lingering spots on my way to work that don't look good for riding. The weekend should warm up enough to melt everything else off though.

From my hood yesterday morning:

Last edited by mgw4jc; 01-18-18 at 12:42 PM.
mgw4jc is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-18, 06:12 PM
  #132  
dbikingman
Senior Member
 
dbikingman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Spokane/Tri-Cities WA
Posts: 1,383

Bikes: mountain bike, road bike

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
40`F, light rain.
Ride was the first in a week since my bike was torn down to install new lighting. I felt a bit overdressed for the “warmer” weather. The ride home I added some extra distance since I was off when it was still light out.
__________________
"I've been dropped a lot of times, but it's never been because of my bike." DXchulo
dbikingman is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-18, 07:01 PM
  #133  
Darth Lefty 
Disco Infiltrator
 
Darth Lefty's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Orangevale CA
Posts: 8,443

Bikes: '76 Paramount, '98 C'Dale XR800, '04 Burley Samba, '17 DB Clutch

Mentioned: 40 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1046 Post(s)
Always good to hear from you, Richard
__________________
Genesis 49:16-17
Darth Lefty is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-18, 07:24 AM
  #134  
arsprod 
Senior Member
 
arsprod's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 1,820

Bikes: Fairdale Weekender Drop, Motobecane 29LTD, Cannondale H400, Basso Coral

Mentioned: 18 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 105 Post(s)
It's no car Friday so I drove! I didn't do it on purpose but have several out of office appointments... still think it's funny
__________________
I'm slow, go around
arsprod is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-18, 07:29 AM
  #135  
mgw4jc
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Mooresville, NC (Charlotte suburb)
Posts: 1,922

Bikes: Cannondale Synapse, Trek 5000 TCT, Giant OCR

Mentioned: 26 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 187 Post(s)
Slacked off on the biking again today. Just enough frozen stuff on the roads that I'd rather not risk it. Next week should be back to the regularly scheduled commuting.
mgw4jc is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-18, 08:32 AM
  #136  
Tundra_Man 
The Fat Guy In The Back
 
Tundra_Man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Sioux Falls, SD
Posts: 2,010

Bikes: '81 Panasonic Sport, '02 Giant Boulder SE, '08 Felt S32, '10 Diamondback Insight RS, '10 Windsor Clockwork, '15 Kestrel Evoke 3.0

Mentioned: 43 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 213 Post(s)
Coming home from work yesterday the temp was in the 30s for the first time in over a month. As a result, the MUP was jammed with people wanting to take advantage of the "nice" weather. I was still on my winter bike with the studded tires working hard to maintain 12 mph. I got passed like I was standing still by a few other riders who obviously weren't encumbered by studs.

As I was riding home I started to get some chain suck when shifting gears. I looked down and my chain was completely dry and rusted to the point where the links were sticking. I had lubed my chain before Monday morning's commute and it lasted less than four days. I don't know what chemicals they put down on the streets here but it's no wonder the components on my winter bike (and our cars) corrode so fast.

This morning it was 26°F. However the temp is projected to reach the mid 40s by this afternoon. When I rolled out of bed my body was letting me know that I'd put on a lot of miles this week (for January, anyway.) I just didn't feel like fighting that winter bike yet again, especially knowing that I was working at multiple locations today and would be putting on about 20 miles. I decided to risk it and ride my hybrid without studs.

Wow, what a difference. With hardly any effort I could hold 2-3 mph faster than I can with my winter bike using moderate effort. And that was against a 10 mph headwind. It's no wonder I loathe riding my winter bike so much.

There still were patches of ice, so I rode around them where I could and when I couldn't I just took great care to make sure I was going completely straight and not turning. Thankfully I made it with no issues. At noon when I ride across town the temp should be in the 30s so the frost will have melted and some of the icy spots should be just wet.

I keep an LED flashlight zip-tied to my helmet. I use it as an auxiliary light and as a backup if the battery in my handlebar mounted light dies. This morning I was running both lights to help keep an eye out for ice. About halfway to work the flashlight started turning itself off and on. After I got to work I messed with it and noticed that the highest brightness setting had stopped working, and if I set it to flashing mode it would only work for a few seconds before it shut itself off. This is the 4th light I've had that started exhibiting similar behavior. In this case the light is only about 3 months old. At first I thought it was because I was buying cheap flashlights, so this time around I spent money for (what I thought) was a decent one. Not sure why I'm killing flashlights so fast.
__________________
Visit me at the Tundra Man Workshop
Tundra_Man is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-18, 09:44 AM
  #137  
rhm
multimodal commuter
 
rhm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: NJ, NYC, LI
Posts: 18,353

Bikes: 1940s Fothergill, 1959 Allegro Special, 1963? Claud Butler Olympic Sprint, Lambert 'Clubman', 1974 Fuji "the Ace", 1976 Holdsworth 650b conversion rando bike, 1983 Trek 720 tourer, 1984 Counterpoint Opus II, 1993 Basso Gap, 2010 Downtube 8h, and...

Mentioned: 347 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1205 Post(s)
I'm riding a 200 km randonnee tomorrow, so yesterday I commuted on the bike I'm riding tomorrow; just to make sure everything is working. A mile before I got home, the chain skipped one time... no big deal, I didn't think anything of it, though it did seem strange, the drive train being pretty new.

So this morning I got on the same bike and started out... got a quarter mile before I realized it wouldn't shift at all. Stopped to take a look at the derailleur, and saw that the chain was routed through the derailleur cage completely wrong. It's supposed to go in front of the upper pulley wheel, and behind the lower one; but it was behind both. Very bizarre; I couldn't think of any way this could happen. I managed to ride home, not shifting, to take a look.

Well, it turned out the bolt through the upper pulley wheel had come loose, letting the chain slip past it before it snapped back into place. Pretty easy fix, but one of those little dish-shaped bushings had gone AWOL and I had to replace the whole jockey wheel. Five minute job; but I'd already missed my train and didn't have time to catch the next one either. So this cost me about an hour total.

On the bright side, I was able to fix this at home, where I had a spare jockey wheel; had this happened out on the road tomorrow, I'd be pretty out of luck.
__________________
I put new leather on ruined saddles like Brooks, etc. You can reach me by private message.
rhm is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-18, 10:05 AM
  #138  
kellichou
Pedal Stompin'
 
kellichou's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 158

Bikes: 2007 Trek 7300

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 32 Post(s)
Yesterday morning it was a 2-skunk rodeo! I was riding along, and I saw a cute young skunk galumphing toward me. Why are they so cute?? I was able to cut over to the gravel path running parallel and give it a wide berth.

Seconds later, a second baby skunk! And that little sucker started right towards me! I was able to hop off the trail and ride on the street for a while to avoid him or her. My heart was racing!
kellichou is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-18, 10:23 AM
  #139  
pdlamb
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: northern Deep South
Posts: 4,575

Bikes: Fuji Touring, Novara Randonee

Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 713 Post(s)
Roads are generally clear after our quarter inch of snow -- why is Atlanta hogging all the snow, dang it? But the last mile on the bike path goes through trees, so I took the longer route in via the road. And the salted bridges. What a mess! I think I'll have to rinse or wash the bike this weekend, assuming it's as warm as they're projecting.


It's good to be back on the bike, though.
pdlamb is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-18, 10:44 AM
  #140  
HardyWeinberg
GATC
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: south Puget Sound
Posts: 8,547
Mentioned: 22 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 409 Post(s)
Drove. Was going to ride, but sick kid. He's old enough that I can leave him home alone, drive to work for the am, and then go home to get him for his MD appt in the pm. Too much to do to ride both ways though.
HardyWeinberg is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-18, 01:17 PM
  #141  
PatrickGSR94
Senior Member
 
PatrickGSR94's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Memphis TN area
Posts: 7,386

Bikes: 2011 Felt Z85 (road/commuter), 2006 Marin Pine Mountain (utility/commuter E-bike), 1995 KHS Alite 1000 (gravel grinder)

Mentioned: 24 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 646 Post(s)
ugh, this cold can take itself right to hell and freeze it over as far as I'm concerned. Sick of it. Today was my first ride (of any kind) since Wednesday of last week. Last Thursday we had tons of rain, which turned to sleet and ice. I worked from home last Friday, then drove to work Monday (MLK day). Then we had another round of snow Monday night into Tuesday, and temps have stayed below freezing pretty much until today. I worked from home and then drove my wife's car in for part of Tuesday, and then again Wednesday, and then drove my car yesterday (Thursday) because it's just been too cold for me to handle a ride.

All that meant ice has been on the ground for most of the past week, which also means school has been out since LAST FRIDAY! Yep, 5 snow days + the holiday means a solid week +1 day that kids have been out of school. People have been going stir crazy, parents going nuts and kids even begging to return to school.

Anyway, temps in the 20's this morning (Tuesday night got down to single digits, some of the coldest I've ever seen in the Memphis area), and this afternoon will be 40's with a southerly tailwind.

50's and 60's this weekend (hoorah!), and I finally got my road bike back together so I've just been itching to take it for a ride with it all clean, with fresh bar tape and cables/housing.
PatrickGSR94 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-18, 02:27 PM
  #142  
Darth Lefty 
Disco Infiltrator
 
Darth Lefty's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Orangevale CA
Posts: 8,443

Bikes: '76 Paramount, '98 C'Dale XR800, '04 Burley Samba, '17 DB Clutch

Mentioned: 40 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1046 Post(s)
Unexpected break in the weather allowed a commute. Looks like the usual winter storm cycle has set in, though. Commutes as catch can, thru March
__________________
Genesis 49:16-17
Darth Lefty is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-18, 05:56 AM
  #143  
Rothaí
Senior Member
 
Rothaí's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Dublin, Ireland.
Posts: 59

Bikes: 2011 Felt Z4

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
First 2018 commute. 7degC and dry.

Half way through my commute, an old man was stuck at the side of an intersection with the bonnet (hood) of his car up. Where he was stopped would be crazy busy 45mins later. This was 6am.
He thought his battery had died but that was unlikely mid-drive. I'm no mechanic! I offered to call someone for him but he had a phone with him.
The irony was he was on his way to the NCT (National Car Test....). I hope he got sorted!
Rothaí is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-18, 06:05 AM
  #144  
dcb23
Senior Member
 
dcb23's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Alexandria, VA
Posts: 1,264
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 14 Post(s)
52F / 11C, calm no wind. Nice to be back on the bike after two weeks recovery from my wreck on the ice. The bruises have been something else.
dcb23 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-18, 07:42 AM
  #145  
mgw4jc
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Mooresville, NC (Charlotte suburb)
Posts: 1,922

Bikes: Cannondale Synapse, Trek 5000 TCT, Giant OCR

Mentioned: 26 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 187 Post(s)
After a snowy week of school and work closings, I'm back on the bike this morning. We had a nice weekend in the upper 50s which melted most of the snow, but there can still be ice in the shady spots that have melted and then refroze. I avoided the MUP knowing it would have quite a bit of this.

We had nice sunrise colors this morning. I stopped for a photo.
mgw4jc is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-18, 08:41 AM
  #146  
arsprod 
Senior Member
 
arsprod's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 1,820

Bikes: Fairdale Weekender Drop, Motobecane 29LTD, Cannondale H400, Basso Coral

Mentioned: 18 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 105 Post(s)
Is it summer?! 49F, rain, pretty wicked headwind - all of which is ok with me! Rain over the weekend and today has thoroughly cleaned off all the snow and ice and now my bike is well rinsed!
__________________
I'm slow, go around
arsprod is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-18, 08:42 AM
  #147  
Tundra_Man 
The Fat Guy In The Back
 
Tundra_Man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Sioux Falls, SD
Posts: 2,010

Bikes: '81 Panasonic Sport, '02 Giant Boulder SE, '08 Felt S32, '10 Diamondback Insight RS, '10 Windsor Clockwork, '15 Kestrel Evoke 3.0

Mentioned: 43 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 213 Post(s)
Blizzard today. The original projections were for us to get somewhere between 12"-18" of snow beginning last night at 9 PM. At 8:30 they announced that the system had shifted south of us, and now we were only supposed to get somewhere between 2"-5". However the wind would remain extremely strong, prompting them to close the airport due to the danger of planes being blown off the runway.

Woke up this morning to about 3" on the ground with snow still falling. Temp was a very reasonable 26F, but the wind was a constant 30 mph with gusts much, much higher than that. Outside of the airport, nothing else in town was closed. So my hopes of a "work from home" day were dashed.

I left the house about 1/2 hour early expecting a really tough ride to work. I was pleasantly surprised. I put the bike in a low gear and slowly spun my way to the office. Traffic was minimal due to me leaving the house so early, and what traffic was on the road was moving slow due to the snow. The main roads had been plowed at some point during the night, so they had less accumulation. The MUP wasn't yet plowed (expected) but being virgin powdery snow and me not trying to break speed records, I easily pedaled through the snow. Some areas had blown completely clear and other spots were quite drifted. I dressed about perfect with a t-shirt and a windbreaker and my long cycling pants. The wind was strong and I was heading straight into it, but my speeds were so low anyway that it didn't seem to bother me a whole lot. Visibility was the biggest problem (hence it being called a blizzard) with the wind picking up the snow and blowing it sideways.

It took about 50 minutes for me to ride the 4 miles to the client's location, but I took my time and really enjoyed the ride. I stopped and snapped some pictures. Unfortunately the wind kept blowing my bike off the kickstand, but really that was the only downside of the commute.




__________________
Visit me at the Tundra Man Workshop

Last edited by Tundra_Man; 01-22-18 at 08:51 AM.
Tundra_Man is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-18, 09:28 AM
  #148  
Skipjacks
Senior Member
 
Skipjacks's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: Mid Atlantic / USA
Posts: 1,202

Bikes: 2017 Specialized Crosstrail / 2013 Trek Crossrip Elite

Mentioned: 19 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 590 Post(s)
40 and damp this morning so it was a bit chilly (I know some of you ride when it's -30 like you're looking for Luke Skywalker lost on Hoth. See post above for a reference. More power to you folks who do that. I don't.)

It'll be around 55 and much drier after a sunny day for the ride home. So that'll be a WONDERFUL ride. Warm enough to not be cold. Cold enough to not break a sweat.
Skipjacks is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-18, 12:24 PM
  #149  
mgw4jc
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Mooresville, NC (Charlotte suburb)
Posts: 1,922

Bikes: Cannondale Synapse, Trek 5000 TCT, Giant OCR

Mentioned: 26 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 187 Post(s)
Funny @Skipjacks.
@Tundra_Man - Good ride. Perhaps you should name your winter bike, "Tauntaun."
mgw4jc is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-18, 01:04 PM
  #150  
pdlamb
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: northern Deep South
Posts: 4,575

Bikes: Fuji Touring, Novara Randonee

Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 713 Post(s)
Lots of changes from the last few days:


Unlike last week, and even the weekend, it was warm enough for bare legs! Have to enjoy that when it happens in January.


Overcast for the first time in almost a week.


Pretty good headwind coming up from the Gulf ahead of the front. If the front comes through as expected, I'll get a headwind going home, too. Plus, the commuting panniers were a drag compared to this weekend. I figure, between the wind and the panniers, I averaged a 30 mph effort for 13 mph on the road.
pdlamb is offline  
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service