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-   -   Gave up this morning (https://www.bikeforums.net/winter-cycling/863556-gave-up-morning.html)

shepherdsflock 12-20-12 08:07 AM

Gave up this morning
 
We got about 6" of the wettest, heaviest, slushiest snow I think I can remember in a long time last night. I tried riding on it this morning, and even with my Nokian Extreme 294, I found it was just too unstable. It just squirmed everywhere under my tires. Had it been 5 degrees colder and it was more frozen, I'm sure it wouldn't have been a big deal, but there was just nothing firm for the tires to grab. Took the cage to work. :(

Oh, and the roads hadn't been cleared yet. So, had they been cleared I'm sure I could have made it just fine. It was just the deep, wet, slushy snow in the streets was too much for me.

Bluish Green 12-20-12 10:19 AM

You made it safely, that's the main thing.

droy45 12-21-12 09:34 AM

That's too much for anybody. I always wait one day after a storm so plows can clean up the shoulders too so you won't be in the lane as much.

rumrunn6 12-21-12 10:07 AM

don't blame you. I once tried my 13 mile commute in 3-4" during a snowstorm one new year's eve day near sunset and I took the sidewalks like an idiot. it took 2 hrs on my MTB with the big wide studded snows aired down to "float" another mistake. it was brutal and I froze my toes. after warming at a DD I pumped my tires the best I could with my mini frame pump and took the road home, that only took 1 hr, 1/2 the time and the ride back has an overall elevation gain as opposed to elevation loss going in. lessons learned: use the road, use the road bike not the MTB, use the narrow studded tires, pump to max pressure for all but the rarest occasions where just 1 or 2 lbs should be let out for traction on only some very rare ice/snow combinations & ride in the right tire track not in the slush/snow to the right of the tire track. you are a vehicle so use pavement. that was the epic night I strained my Iliotibial Band which took months to recover from. lessons learned from that, better thermal protection for my Iliotibial Band at the knee, proper saddle height, or slightly lower in extreme cold, use lower gears in extreme cold or stay off the sidewalks in deep snow. mashing in extreme cold is bad for the Iliotibial Band. that was one nasty desperate night ride home.

Bluish Green 12-21-12 12:33 PM


Originally Posted by rumrunn6 (Post 15074641)
don't blame you. I once tried my 13 mile commute in 3-4" during a snowstorm one new year's eve day near sunset and I took the sidewalks like an idiot. it took 2 hrs on my MTB with the big wide studded snows aired down to "float" another mistake. it was brutal and I froze my toes. after warming at a DD I pumped my tires the best I could with my mini frame pump and took the road home, that only took 1 hr, 1/2 the time and the ride back has an overall elevation gain as opposed to elevation loss going in. lessons learned: use the road, use the road bike not the MTB, use the narrow studded tires, pump to max pressure for all but the rarest occasions where just 1 or 2 lbs should be let out for traction on only some very rare ice/snow combinations & ride in the right tire track not in the slush/snow to the right of the tire track. you are a vehicle so use pavement. that was the epic night I strained my Iliotibial Band which took months to recover from. lessons learned from that, better thermal protection for my Iliotibial Band at the knee, proper saddle height, or slightly lower in extreme cold, use lower gears in extreme cold or stay off the sidewalks in deep snow. mashing in extreme cold is bad for the Iliotibial Band. that was one nasty desperate night ride home.

Thanks for this post. You answered some questions I was wondering about regarding where to ride in snow, and the advice about not mashing and being smart about avoiding terrible commutes when possible is great advice, very helpful to me as I navigate my first winter of bike commuting.

I opted to drive my wife's car to work today due primarily to the forecast for strong headwinds on the ride home; I'm glad I did. The commute will be there for me again on Monday....

DJ Shaun 12-22-12 06:57 PM

Yesterday morning I woke up to 4" of snow on the ground with a whole lot more coming. I took the bus.

This is my second winter of commuting. I learned a lot during my first winter. It's good to knowing which roads get plowed quickly and which ones only get done a day or two later. My shortest winter route is only 1km longer then my shortest summer route.

Deep snow, blowing snow or freezing rain are no fun to ride in for a 13km one way commute. (And I regularly ride in rain all the time.) I no longer ride during a storm or if there's a significant one forecasted for the ride home.

erig007 12-22-12 07:46 PM

rain, slush, snow, wind, cold nothing stop me but some rides are very hazardous. Sometimes small roads where the snow hasn't been removed from the road by machines are not the best path sometimes they are. It's always a matter of common sense. Some rides are very unstable especially on half frozen slush. In this case i just choose small roads slow down and let the few cars passing me before carrying on. Even if a few times i was close to fell it hasn't happened yet and even if it happens with my speed and the snow on the ground i don't feel there is much to worry about. I just ride through the snow being cautious, aware of my surrounding, especially the vehicles coming from behind and anticipate that i could fall at any time and ride accordingly

MadCityCyclist 12-22-12 08:26 PM

That's why I bought a fat bike...

John Nolan 12-22-12 10:05 PM

I'm in Ottawa too... I tried to ride yesterday but the roads near my place were too tough for me!

dramiscram 12-23-12 10:36 AM

Slush and wet snow are the worst!
No shame to take the van on those mornings.
I went back for the car last monday after 7 kms at an average of 12 km/h, it would've taken me about 2 1/2 hour to go my 27.2 kms commute.
But it's a very good work out!

Just for the record : MAN UP, PRINCESS!!! ;)

iforgotmename 12-27-12 06:47 PM

Same here...I take my dog for rides and the snow(on the sidewalk) was about 10 inches of wet sloppy mess. I have Nokian WXC300's and it was nearly impossible to keep going due to the conditio0ns. BTW I only ride on the sidewalk when taking the dog out. No problems on the road as they are great about plowing.

Pynchonite 12-27-12 09:27 PM

Yeah, we didn't get that much snow- more like 4". It wasn't as bad down here, however the wind was so strong that I had the unsettling experience of riding up a hill without pedaling.

erig007 12-29-12 02:23 PM


Originally Posted by dramiscram (Post 15080444)
Slush and wet snow are the worst!
No shame to take the van on those mornings.
I went back for the car last monday after 7 kms at an average of 12 km/h, it would've taken me about 2 1/2 hour to go my 27.2 kms commute.
But it's a very good work out!

Just for the record : MAN UP, PRINCESS!!! ;)


Nothing to be ashamed of. You went for a smarter solution rather than an easier solution (in terms of mind work). As keeping riding a bicycle in wet snow and slush is not an efficient solution anymore in terms of time saved nor in terms of health possibly as it becomes an intense training which is mostly not as good for health as moderate exercises and possibly not as safe as rides without snow on the ground


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