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normal cycling shoes plus cover or winter specific boots?

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normal cycling shoes plus cover or winter specific boots?

Old 02-18-21, 04:37 PM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by 2_i View Post
The bike itself is pretty much ensured to be bomb proof, i.e., pretty much no matter what happens the bike can be picked up and ridden on. Luggage has some safety cord so that it can be picked from snow if it tries to detach. That is the bike side.
I’m not questioning the toughness of the bicycle. Even carbon fiber will probably fair well enough in a crash. My own winter equipment (and summer for that matter) is either aluminum or titanium. Damage to the bike isn’t any kind of concern. When I carry stuff on the bike, it is usually a rack trunk that is so solidly attached to the bike that I can carry the bike around by the handle if needed. The rack...a Tubus...would probably break before the mount...an Ortlieb...would break.

DSCN0387 by Stuart Black, on Flickr

On my own side, the instant I feel that I cannot recover, I let the bike slip from under me. The legs go wide so that no part of my body can get caught under the bike. The bike usually goes forward a bit besides going to the side. The goal is just to get a leg of pants just rubbed a bit and this is it. If I take some slight bruise, nobody cares, I do not even check - part of life. I.e., it sounds similar, maybe I take a bit more active role in keeping myself apart from the bike when the fall becomes inevitable.
Sounds good on paper but in practice, you are sticking a leg out to catch you on a surface that is slick to begin with. Your foot hitting the ground is just a likely to go in the opposite direction as the bike making you into a wishbone at Thanksgiving. If the your foot does catch, the other leg is traveling with the bike with the same result. I learned...the hard way!...long ago that keeping all my limbs inside the vehicle at all times is the most prudent action when the shiny side goes down. The strained hamstring that I referenced above happened when I did exactly what you are suggesting. Bruises don’t keep me off a bicycle for any amount of time. Broken bones and torn ligaments require weeks to heal. I’d rather avoid both but will take bruises over deeper damage.

As to staying upright, the most important for me is to tame ambitions, recognize that turns can be made a sufficiently low speed but not high, that stopping takes a distance, etc. I certainly put a foot down when certain terrain cannot be ridden at high speed and the low speed inertia + terrain do not allow to keep balance. If it is more economical to walk, I walk, whatever it takes. Usually it just takes a short stretch to get to some easier route.
That goes mostly without saying.

To add, my winter boots have the soles shown below. Outside of what they are marketed for, I started using such soles on occasion in summer too - great on wet slippery rock.
Most any winter boot made for clipless mountain bike pedals will have a similar sole. I have Lake MXZ303 and Lake MX145 boots. Their soles look very much like yours. My summer mountain bike shoes also have aggressive soles on them. I never know when I might have to hike something.
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Old 02-18-21, 08:17 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
Sounds good on paper but in practice, you are sticking a leg out to catch you on a surface that is slick to begin with. Your foot hitting the ground is just a likely to go in the opposite direction as the bike making you into a wishbone at Thanksgiving. If the your foot does catch, the other leg is traveling with the bike with the same result. I learned...the hard way!...long ago that keeping all my limbs inside the vehicle at all times is the most prudent action when the shiny side goes down. The strained hamstring that I referenced above happened when I did exactly what you are suggesting. Bruises don’t keep me off a bicycle for any amount of time. Broken bones and torn ligaments require weeks to heal. I’d rather avoid both but will take bruises over deeper damage.
When I was in college, I was doing judo. The first thing they did with us, I think for a month of intense training, few h/week, was exclusively to have us learn how to fall, to gain instincts where slight last moment movements prevent you from injuring yourself in a fall. Issues in cycling are different to a degree because you have the rigid bike that can challenge your body. What I can say that with time I acquired instincts to escape the bike. The practice is that when I ride with someone else in winter, that person might suffer and my bike slip, if it actually happens, is a nonevent. I have to say that right now I even move away from studs because they serve less and less purpose for me, maybe if I go uphill, it is slippery and I cannot grip the ground to move forward. Also I use studs if the only practical routes become main streets with heavy traffic, just to keep dangers away.

I am sorry about the hamstring. I wonder where the difference could come from. I do downhill skiing too and regaining balance in absolutely murky situations with equipment potentially getting in the way is routinely required there. In the end, it must go to instincts as there is no time for any other type of action in a winter mishap.
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Old 02-19-21, 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by 2_i View Post
When I was in college, I was doing judo. The first thing they did with us, I think for a month of intense training, few h/week, was exclusively to have us learn how to fall, to gain instincts where slight last moment movements prevent you from injuring yourself in a fall. Issues in cycling are different to a degree because you have the rigid bike that can challenge your body. What I can say that with time I acquired instincts to escape the bike. The practice is that when I ride with someone else in winter, that person might suffer and my bike slip, if it actually happens, is a nonevent. I have to say that right now I even move away from studs because they serve less and less purpose for me, maybe if I go uphill, it is slippery and I cannot grip the ground to move forward. Also I use studs if the only practical routes become main streets with heavy traffic, just to keep dangers away.

I am sorry about the hamstring. I wonder where the difference could come from. I do downhill skiing too and regaining balance in absolutely murky situations with equipment potentially getting in the way is routinely required there. In the end, it must go to instincts as there is no time for any other type of action in a winter mishap.
Although my understanding of Judo is very limited, I do understand that it is about learning how to fall. You are talking about jumping off a bike and landing on your feet. I’m not sure that is something that Judo teaches...at least not from what I’ve seen of competitions.

I’ve spent years riding and crashing bicycles. My approach to crashing comes from learning how to fall and not stick some part of my body out so that it can be broken off. I know exactly how I injured my hamstring. Instead of following my training...i.e. ride the bike down...I stuck out my leg to keep me from falling. The bike went one way and I didn’t go with it, resulting in tearing of that ligament. One thing that also caused the injury was that I was “braced for impact” which meant that my muscles were tense and rigid.

I learned my lesson very well that day. Since then I may fight to keep the bike from crashing but when the inevitable happens, I keep my feet on the pedals and my hands on the handlebars. I relax as much as possible, becoming a “rag doll” so that when I do hit the ground everything is loose and can take an impact without transmitting it to my skeleton. I never try to “escape the bike” because the bike is going to dig into the ground and stop faster than me sliding across the ground can.

You may have catlike reflexes but most people don’t. The story about the mechanic I gave above is only one of many that I have about people who have stuck out a hand or leg to “catch” themselves. Doing that or trying to “jump off the bike” is more likely to result in more serious injury to the untrained than just hanging on and riding the crash down.
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Old 02-19-21, 08:42 PM
  #29  
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I’ve got a little bit of everything for winter riding, from platform pedals, to cages with toeclips, and single-sided SPD pedals. I wear with them whichever footwear is appropriate to the type of riding, so I may wear insulated leather street shoes with toeclips, I may throw some rear zipper entry neoprene booties on top of those if it’s really messy, or I may wear insulated walking boots on the flat pedals if I’m going to be outside at my destination. For winter road rides, I usually wear Northwave Celsius Artic winter MTB cycling boots with the SPD pedals.

If it’s really cold, I’ll wear electric socks with any shoe/pedal combo, giving me a solid two hours of cycling comfort.

There is no one-size-fits-all answer, so I like to have all the answers. I’ve been pining for 3-bolt winter cycling boots, just for the style element and so I can wear them later in spring and earlier in fall without disfavor from roadies.
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Old 02-19-21, 08:49 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
Although my understanding of Judo is very limited, I do understand that it is about learning how to fall. You are talking about jumping off a bike and landing on your feet. I’m not sure that is something that Judo teaches...at least not from what I’ve seen of competitions.
Literally maybe not much, unless you are flying over the handlebars. However, if you take a broader perspective, then maybe quite a bit. Instincts are important because that is all that you might be left to use. Small rearrangements in the body can make significant differences. The overall goals is to prevent your bones and joints getting locked in orientations where they may take a blow larger than they can withstand.

Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
I’ve spent years riding and crashing bicycles. My approach to crashing comes from learning how to fall and not stick some part of my body out so that it can be broken off. I know exactly how I injured my hamstring. Instead of following my training...i.e. ride the bike down...I stuck out my leg to keep me from falling. The bike went one way and I didn’t go with it, resulting in tearing of that ligament. One thing that also caused the injury was that I was “braced for impact” which meant that my muscles were tense and rigid.

I learned my lesson very well that day. Since then I may fight to keep the bike from crashing but when the inevitable happens, I keep my feet on the pedals and my hands on the handlebars. I relax as much as possible, becoming a “rag doll” so that when I do hit the ground everything is loose and can take an impact without transmitting it to my skeleton. I never try to “escape the bike” because the bike is going to dig into the ground and stop faster than me sliding across the ground can.
My take is as follows. Once the fall is inevitable, there is no reason for you to stay with the bike. The bike is tough and will take care of itself. If take off your load from the falling bike, it will be, in fact. easier for the bike. You need to take care of yourself. The bike becomes an entity that can hurt you. You let it fall and act not to fall yourself and not get hurt by the bike. In most cases it is quite straightforward, once you free yourself mentally. Once the bike starts tilting to the side, at least one of your feet is already quite close to the ground and you have to move it out anyway, so that it does not get trapped under the bike. If you need to place the other one on the bike, for balance, so be it. It all goes to the classic case of the ladder. When you are slipping, the regular instinct is to protect the can with paint, next the ladder, but you need to learn to put your own protection to the front.

On the bike for balance note, when conditions are rough, I often find that out of 3 options, walking without the bike, riding on the bike and walking with the bike, the third is the easiest - the bike provides countersupport.

Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
You may have catlike reflexes but most people don’t. The story about the mechanic I gave above is only one of many that I have about people who have stuck out a hand or leg to “catch” themselves. Doing that or trying to “jump off the bike” is more likely to result in more serious injury to the untrained than just hanging on and riding the crash down.
I think that this is something that can be learned to become a custom. Below are the bikes I use during the current winter and for light snow, I may use the folder. The latter may sound ridiculous. You cannot get serious winter tires in the needed size. However, when it falls it is trivial to let it go. My wife is learning to ride one in winter. Her feet still get trapped here and there in the falls, but she is getting better.


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Old 02-19-21, 08:50 PM
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Originally Posted by chaadster View Post
I’ve got a little bit of everything for winter riding, from platform pedals, to cages with toeclips, and single-sided SPD pedals. I wear with them whichever footwear is appropriate to the type of riding, so I may wear insulated leather street shoes with toeclips, I may throw some rear zipper entry neoprene booties on top of those if it’s really messy, or I may wear insulated walking boots on the flat pedals if I’m going to be outside at my destination. For winter road rides, I usually wear Northwave Celsius Artic winter MTB cycling boots with the SPD pedals.

If it’s really cold, I’ll wear electric socks with any shoe/pedal combo, giving me a solid two hours of cycling comfort.

There is no one-size-fits-all answer, so I like to have all the answers. I’ve been pining for 3-bolt winter cycling boots, just for the style element and so I can wear them later in spring and earlier in fall without disfavor from roadies.
Someone should really make toe clips with a leather shell. Probably a pretty small market of people who would buy them.
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Old 02-19-21, 09:11 PM
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Originally Posted by xyz View Post
Someone should really make toe clips with a leather shell. Probably a pretty small market of people who would buy them.

https://www.modernbike.com/product-2...AaAgJTEALw_wcB
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Old 02-19-21, 10:13 PM
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I mean a solid leather shell to block the wind.
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Old 02-20-21, 10:28 AM
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These would be great in the summer when you're wearing flip flops and the leather protects the space between your toes
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Old 02-20-21, 03:21 PM
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Originally Posted by xyz View Post
I mean a solid leather shell to block the wind.
Oh, I see. That is an interesting concept, and would be noce to keep your shoes from getting splattered, too.
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Old 02-27-21, 08:52 PM
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I just bought winter cycling shoes on impulse. I was driving on Rt 17 in New Jersey and came upon Campmor, one of my favorite stores. I went in to browse and decided it's time to try those shoes. They were mighty expensive but then they were marked 20%, so not bad. I can't wait to try them. They're Shimano with SPD cleats.
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Old 02-27-21, 10:13 PM
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Thick socks, or multiple layers of socks, are helpful providing your boots/shoes have enough room to accommodate them. If the feet are squeezed, this cuts down on blood flow and predisposes to discomfort and potential frostbite. "Keep 'em loose!"

All this talk about falling and slipping on ice and nobody's talking about studded tires? I've been commuting in Chicago winters for years and can't remember the last time I fell. Riding in snow and ice with studs is a whole different experience.
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Old 02-27-21, 11:33 PM
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Originally Posted by sweeks View Post
Thick socks, or multiple layers of socks, are helpful providing your boots/shoes have enough room to accommodate them. If the feet are squeezed, this cuts down on blood flow and predisposes to discomfort and potential frostbite. "Keep 'em loose!"
Full agreement.

Originally Posted by sweeks View Post
All this talk about falling and slipping on ice and nobody's talking about studded tires? I've been commuting in Chicago winters for years and can't remember the last time I fell. Riding in snow and ice with studs is a whole different experience.
Sounds like you were actually never approaching any boundaries.
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Old 02-28-21, 08:00 AM
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Originally Posted by 2_i View Post
Sounds like you were actually never approaching any boundaries.
Heh... sounds like you never rode on studded tires.


Try *this* without studded tires.
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Old 02-28-21, 09:35 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by sweeks View Post
Thick socks, or multiple layers of socks, are helpful providing your boots/shoes have enough room to accommodate them. If the feet are squeezed, this cuts down on blood flow and predisposes to discomfort and potential frostbite. "Keep 'em loose!"
I recently got some Rapha Deep Winter socks, and have not put on my overshoes since. I have not yet figured out the temp where I need to add the overshoes but am hoping it is below freezing only. The socks have a layer of wind protection on the front side. Note that your shoes will fit tighter; for me I just didn't have them as far cinched in and all fine, in fact they feel better than with normal socks oddly enough. They come up to your knees which also helps keep the feet warm by keeping the blood going to your feet warmer as well. Overall highly recommended.

Originally Posted by sweeks View Post
All this talk about falling and slipping on ice and nobody's talking about studded tires? I've been commuting in Chicago winters for years and can't remember the last time I fell. Riding in snow and ice with studs is a whole different experience.
I just got some studs. Too bad the shipping was slow, I may have missed the ice season here as it is now warming up. But there are many more ice seasons coming down the line.
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Old 02-28-21, 11:49 AM
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Originally Posted by scottfsmith View Post
I recently got some Rapha Deep Winter socks, and have not put on my overshoes since.
Thanks for the link, Scott. Nice-looking products, and some use-and-abuse-friendly policies.
I hope you get to ride on some "black ice" yet this season, but those tires should last a long time and you'll get good use out of them. My studded tires for the mountain bike are at least 8 years old and have plenty of wear left... maybe more than *I* do at age 70! The tires on my "winter" commuter are 20" Schwalbe "Marathon Winter", and they don't last as long because I'm on them 5 days a week in salt, slush, ice and snow. But they got me through some of the heaviest snows we've had in several years here in Chicago without a single "get-off". Obviously, I depend on the snow plows to get most of the snow off the streets, but there's plenty that they miss.

Waiting for the train. "Boundaries"? What boundaries? ;-)
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Old 03-05-21, 10:16 AM
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How thick are those socks? I have several pair of Smartwool. The medium thickness are the thickest I can wear without my winter bike shoes getting too tight. The smartwool are nice, but my feet still get cold when the temps get down to single digits (~5F).

I have some really nice, thick socks that work with my hiking boots, but I need to be clipped in to ride (all my bikes are recumbent).
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Old 03-05-21, 11:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Notso_fastLane View Post
How thick are those socks?
I would say they are not as thick as the thick old hiking socks I have, but are thicker than about any other sock I have. So I would not get them unless you thought they could be backup for hiking or something else. They are perfectly good for hiking and any other winter activity if the shoe is big enough.
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