November 30, 2011

Thinking about Winter

I have no powerful insights about the winter. Primarily, it's cold and sometimes there is snow or ice on the ground. So my main concerns won't cause you to lose your breath:

  1. Hands get really cold.
  2. Face gets pretty cold.
  3. Feet can get pretty cold.
  4. Everything else will start to sweat
With point #4 in mind, you have to dress based on distance. If you are going a couple of blocks, put on your arctic gear. But if you're going 3+ miles, you'll have to decided between being cold early or overheated later. I prefer keeping sweat to a minimum, but to each his/her own.

If you're really interested in biking in the extreme cold, I suggest Icebike because they have very in-depth strategies with dealing with a variety of weather types. If you're curious about how I roll:

  1. Wear awesome gloves. Because you use your hands to operate the brakes and gears, a warm pair of gloves are necessary.
  2. Wear a hat or possibly a balaclava (face mask). A balaclava makes you look like a ninja but also allows flexibility in uncovering your face if you need to cool down.
  3. Wear winter boots. One trick to try is to put on your shoes as soon as you get up to warm them up before riding. If your toes are cold when you start riding, they probably won't warm up.
  4. Be prepared to unzip your outerlayer to cool down. It's cool.
  5. If you decide to bike in snow, make sure you have proper equipment such as studded tires and possibly disc brakes. If you're unprepared to have the proper equipment, you may want to choose the bus or a car for the days which ice could be a problem.
I salute those of you who will continue biking throughout the winter. It takes a certain je ne sais quoi which I do not have.

Next up: Just how cold is Columbus

Public Service Announcement: Bicycle Subcomittee Meeting tonight at 5:00

Cool photo of the day (hat tip my girlfriend):


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