I love cycling. I love the outdoors. I love fall, summer, leaves, nature, breezes, etc. I do not love being cold. Much as I can see how the crisp tundra would be exhilarating to slide over; the frigid air will keep me away from winter cycling.
Believe me; I understand not being able to sit out the long winter up here in Oswego, NY. “Where is that?” , you ask. On the greatest great lake; Lake Ontario, which makes it winter for almost half of the year.
So sitting out cycling for about six months really throws a wrench in things. For the cycling enthusiasts that are far more hard core than me, there are several factors to take into consideration.
There are specific bikes for winter biking that have what are essentially, mudflaps. Winter bikes have mudguards, puncture resistant tires and extra lights. Lights are an important feature as winter riding is during gloomy, dull days where it would be easy to blend into the gray.
The benefits of winter biking are that there is far less traffic, the surroundings are serene.
The main thing to remember with winter riding is to properly fuel your body with food and water and then to have the proper clothing for sweat absorbency and insulation.
You will need to get a fender to keep the salt, snow, slush spray from hitting you. It is important to value your own safety rather than worry about angering drivers at times when winter cycling. Cars will tend to give you more room on the shoulder and you should use it to avoid hitting the conglomerate rock and snow trail that tends to build up along the road.
Taking your bike for a ride in these elements is going to require some maintenatnce when you get home. Dry your breaks and clear them of salt and grit. Spray chain cleaner or Wd40 on the chain and moving parts and use a toothbrush and rag to free up all sand and salt that would otherwise, clog and corrode your bike.
So bundle up, prepare and beware but have fun year-round on your cycle.