Follow Up: Winter Cycling
In the previous post I eluded to the fact I find winter cycling fairly easy. I generally don’t find winter as intolerable as many, but there are some tricks to getting through it too. In the end, a lot of it is mental. If you think you hate the cold, you will.
Specifically on how to survive a Boston, NH, or VT winter all comes down to proper gear choices. Do not wear any heavy layers but do wear many thinner layers. Options are important in case you found out you made the wrong choice. The worst days to ride are on the cold rainy ones; once the snow flies it’s easy, if there is no ice hidden under it. You don’ need as much clothing as you think if you keep pedaling. Just make sure you cover all of your skin with fabrics that are windproof and you’re all set. I don’t need special shoes but just a good pair of heavy wool socks and those thermal booties they sell to slip over your shoes that keep your feet drier than they do warm. I generally do not need a hat nor do I need to cover up the air holes in the helmet. I find that a headband - I have a thin cycling specific one from Descente - is more than sufficient at keeping my ears warm. Gloves are my biggest problem and I have yet to find something that leaves my fingers dexterous and warm. If your fingers get cold, just rapidly swing your arm around a few times to get blood back. If you’re not used to cold winters covering your face maybe a good idea, even your mouth so you’re breathing more humid air, but be forewarned that depending on how you do this, you could readily fog up any glasses you are wearing. Just remember before you go out you should be cold before you get on the bike, otherwise you will sweat, overheat, and if you stop, get colder, faster, because of the sweat.