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The Coldest Temperature You Will Ride In Is . . . .

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Fifty Plus (50+) Share the victories, challenges, successes and special concerns of bicyclists 50 and older. Especially useful for those entering or reentering bicycling.
View Poll Results: What is the coldest temperature you will ride in . . .
61 - 70F
5
1.99%
51 - 60F
27
10.76%
41 - 50F
46
18.33%
31 - 40F
62
24.70%
21 - 30F
33
13.15%
11 - 20F
29
11.55%
01 - 10F
20
7.97%
-9 - 0F
10
3.98%
-19- -10F
8
3.19%
Something else? - please tell us below. Thanks
11
4.38%
Voters: 251. You may not vote on this poll

The Coldest Temperature You Will Ride In Is . . . .

Old 11-02-11, 08:24 PM
  #51  
OldsCOOL
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I went out on the MTB 2wks ago when it was 40deg and steady rain. Came home wet, good warmth and big smile on my face knowing I did a tough ride while everybody else in town was inside.

Not sure how much I'll continue or how cold. I'm a 99% roadie.
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Old 11-03-11, 06:12 AM
  #52  
Ken Brown
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I clicked on 1 - 10 but that is to get somewhere in the city, not for recreation. I figure I am out in the cold for a shorter time if I cycle to the store, library, bank or whatever, than walking. For a fun ride it can't be much below 32F.
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Old 11-03-11, 07:11 AM
  #53  
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Originally Posted by gforeman View Post
I kind of broke my own rule today. 58 and Sunny, so I did 21 miles. Legs were fine, upper body was freezing! Had a T-Shirt, Long sleeve short, and another bike shirt on, and was still cold.
Was there any cotton - the hypothermic fabric - in those layers?

In 21 miles you sweat and it will get caught in the cotton.
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Old 11-03-11, 08:40 AM
  #54  
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I'm trying really, really hard to get Panama for my next and final marina management gig. I think maybe the coldest they've gotten in recorded history has been down into the 60's. Up in the mountains. Dead of winter. Cloudy day. Rain.
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Old 11-03-11, 09:57 AM
  #55  
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Last weekend: breezy, bright sunny day, rolling hills, 35 degrees, 34 miles. Turned out to be a great ride. Wore base layer covered by long sleave jersey, windbreaker and vest. Booties over my shoes, full gloves with handwarmers. Much more enjoyable than expected.
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Old 11-04-11, 03:58 PM
  #56  
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I hate cold weather riding. I have a pair of tights, and could bundle up but I hate it. I am basically a t-shirt and shorts rider. If it was a club ride or something like that I might ride at 55, but not anything lower.
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Old 11-04-11, 04:52 PM
  #57  
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Originally Posted by tsl View Post
I chose -9 to 0F, only because that's the coldest I've ridden, and it's not really likely to get much colder than that around here...
Same here. We normally don't get under 5F, and when we do, it's not for many days.

When I rode at 0F a few years ago my gear wasn't as good as I have now, so I expect to do it again with less suffering.

But I will likely take the more direct route to/from work under those conditions, to cut down the time of exposure. My feet are the weak link and due to them I have trouble staying out there longer than about an hour when it gets really cold.
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Old 11-04-11, 04:55 PM
  #58  
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I now live in San Jose, where there is never any weather that I will not ride in. I moved here from Maine, where I rode at temps down to 0F. My commute in Maine was 15 miles, and in the winter it took me ~1hr 15 mins. At 0F, putting warm water in my water bottle and storing it in the cage upside down, it would be fully frozen by the time I got to work.
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Old 11-04-11, 06:53 PM
  #59  
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I've wondered: Does really cold weather put undue stress on spokes, chains and bearings?
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Old 11-04-11, 07:47 PM
  #60  
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Voted 51 - 60. We Floridians are wimps. I actually considered voting 61-70.
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Old 11-04-11, 08:03 PM
  #61  
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Originally Posted by xizangstan View Post
I've wondered: Does really cold weather put undue stress on spokes, chains and bearings?
Not that I've noticed.
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Old 11-05-11, 05:34 AM
  #62  
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Originally Posted by xizangstan View Post
I've wondered: Does really cold weather put undue stress on spokes, chains and bearings?
Your pawls can freeze up. When that happens, you can't go no matter how fast you pedal. My winter bike if fg just for this reason.

I don't see what effect cold would have on the things you mentioned, though. Just freezing up stuff like oil or grease that's likely been contaminated.
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Old 11-05-11, 04:08 PM
  #63  
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Originally Posted by DnvrFox View Post
Given:

  • No or little wind
  • Clear sky, no precipitation
  • 10+ mile ride
  • Level or near level
  • Daylight
  • Average speed 12+ mph
Or as many of these as your riding situation fits. (And, I am sure I forgot something above, which someone will kindly point out to me. )

So, what is the coldest temperature Fahrenheit you will ride in?

I don't have a personal low temperature threshold even without those wonderful conditions you outlined above! If it's not precipitating and the roads are dry & ice-free, I'll get out on the bike & ride. I've never seen a temperature where I live that was so low that it would keep me off the bike on a clear, dry, windless day.

Of course, it almost never gets near 0F where I live. I suppose if I woke up one morning and the thermometer said -50F I might consider staying inside that day.
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Old 11-05-11, 04:35 PM
  #64  
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Below freezing is my cutoff point in my hometown in Southeast Texas. High humidity combined with freezing temps is just too much to tolerate on a bike. In Colorado I think I could ride into the low teens. Just dosen't seem as cold with low humidity.
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Old 11-05-11, 05:04 PM
  #65  
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I'll ride into the 20s, but only if the roads are clear of ice and salt.
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Old 11-05-11, 05:36 PM
  #66  
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I voted for 31 - 40F. I am apprehensive to ride below freezing for fear of sliding on ice. Now hear me out. I am a Southern California kid who has never ridden below 34F. Of course I should try to ride in sub freezing temps at least once, right?
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Old 11-05-11, 05:45 PM
  #67  
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Originally Posted by rubic View Post
I voted for 31 - 40F. I am apprehensive to ride below freezing for fear of sliding on ice. Now hear me out. I am a Southern California kid who has never ridden below 34F. Of course I should try to ride in sub freezing temps at least once, right?
Yeah, you gotta try it.
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Old 11-06-11, 09:35 AM
  #68  
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I live in Minneapolis. What more need I say? If the sun is out and there's no wind, I'm ok down to about 5F. I have the gear and I ride year-round.

I use carbide-studded tires and have a full arsenal of wool, poly and goretex weaponry.
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Old 11-06-11, 02:33 PM
  #69  
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Originally Posted by bobbycorno View Post
I don't honestly know my low-temp limit for cycling - haven't gotten there yet. For the record, it was 19-20 f when I left for work (on the bike) yesterday and today. And IIRC, I've ridden in single digits. Must by my Norwegian genes: "There is no bad weather, only inadequate clothing."

SP
Bend, OR
Update: did a 50 miler yesterday, temp range 35-40f, pretty stiff breeze out of the south. Wool base layer, wool ls jersey, 80's vintage jacket (wind front, knit body), 20+ year old winter cycling gloves, fleece tights, wool boot socks, booties, cycling cap under my helmet. Stayed plenty warm but didn't sweat worth mentioning, either. The weather's always fine, as long as you're dressed for it!

SP
Bend, OR
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Old 11-06-11, 04:01 PM
  #70  
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There was a time that I'd check 31-40, but no more. Now it's above 40 and honestly closer to 50. On the other hand, when we talk about hot weather rides, I seem to be more comfortable with warmer weather than most here. The trainer is already set up for the winter.
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Old 11-06-11, 04:27 PM
  #71  
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Originally Posted by rubic View Post
I voted for 31 - 40F. I am apprehensive to ride below freezing for fear of sliding on ice. Now hear me out. I am a Southern California kid who has never ridden below 34F. Of course I should try to ride in sub freezing temps at least once, right?

Piffel, you dont need to try it even once. The ground is as hard as pavement and if it starts raining while you are out it is like getting shot with BBs. If you live where you have no choice that is different but where you live be thankful you can ride in pretty normal cloths all year long.

But I have lived where it snows and once it gets cold enough to put black ice on the road the bike is put away for the season. Once I got ready to retire I made sure it was someplace where I would never have to worry about black ice.

Think about all of the descriptions of a physical Paradise, you might picture a Hammock on an island somewhere with everyone running around in bathing suits and drinking drinks with little umbrellas and ice cubes. Ill bet you never picture a parka, mittens, fur lined boots and fur hat.


The above was intended for entertainment only and was not meant to tease too many of our friends in the colder states.
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Old 11-06-11, 04:35 PM
  #72  
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21-30F here. Last winter, on a few rides I left the house in temps between 27-29F. Of course, here in So Cal temps will only climb from there so the rides finished in the mid 40's to low 50's. While I don't require sun (these were overcast early mornings), it must be dry for it to be bearable.
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Old 11-07-11, 07:12 AM
  #73  
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Originally Posted by Kurt Erlenbach View Post
Voted 51 - 60. We Floridians are wimps. I actually considered voting 61-70.
Yep! I'm with you there, Kurt. That's why I live in Florida. I did a Cure on Wheels charity ride on Saturday morning that stated off in the mid 60's and ended up in the low 80's by rides end. My kind of winter!
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Old 03-29-17, 08:16 AM
  #74  
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I voted 31-40F. My record is -2C (28F) when I had a warm garage to safely warm up the bike. I rode only in the city and kept the speeds below 60kmh (37mph). I live in Estonia and I'm pretty used to cold weather in general and I didn't have any heated gear. I used dualsport helmet without visor and some special goggles for riding.
Usually I start riding when it's at least 3 or 4 degrees Celsius.
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Old 03-29-17, 09:35 AM
  #75  
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Mid 20's is when it just hurts to breath so I draw the line there.

Honestly, i have no problem into the low 30s, since i now have the cloths that keep me warm in those temps.
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