We have officially entered the season of transition. The temperature is rising and the snow is melting.
There was a fog warning this morning, which made for a beautifully eerie commute by bike. I made sure to stop and capture the magic of it.
Over these last few weeks I was forced to accept that I have a limit when it comes to winter cycling. This is a hard pill to swallow! In a lot of ways I am limited by the type of bike I chose. My thin tires cannot handle a foot of snow, go figure. I find myself daydreaming of upgrading to a fat bike for the winter months. I chose my Trek not because it was the best possible choice but because it was affordable. Due to my unnerving uncertainty about whether winter cycling was going to be for me I could only (in good conscience) fork up so much cash and those fat bikes are pricey. Turns out I love it and on bad days that leave me bus bound I wish I could be out there braving it. Days like these cause me to miss my Azor dearly and long for Spring's arrival.
Left: There was a severe cold weather warning this morning, which resulted in some epic eyecicles on my ride to work.
Right: The ride home was gorgeous!
Today I took my first winter cycling fall and I am a-okay. Most people in my life know that I winter cycle at this point, it is such a huge part of my everyday that it is hard not to bring it up all too frequently. People are always so shocked when I say it is pretty crappy cycling weather right now. I find myself wishing for a different kind of winter on two wheels. When you are winter cycling there is really no difference between -10 and -20°C (-30°C is when it starts to get different). Your body is producing heat and as long as you dress properly, you stay warm. This past month has been warmer than average, rarely getting colder than -10°C. In my limited experience with winter cycling I have found that the worst conditions are when it is not quite cold enough to keep all the snow and ice firm, but not quite warm enough for it all to melt (this is the current condition). Today I was victim to that awful, thick, sludgy, sand-filled snow that forms on the roads in this type of weather. In this type of weather it does not matter if you have studded tires, you will slip and slide. On a normal day I can assess the conditions far enough ahead of time, react accordingly and find that safe route. As a result of a generally 'off' day I got into a sludgy nightmare and did not have the physical or mental power/energy to get myself out of it. I am a little shaken (and will be hurting tomorrow), but I have definitely learned from this experience. Everyday I am testing myself and I am continuously growing as a winter cyclist. Also, some people may curse me, but it would be nice if it went back to the -25 to 30°C range.
Me is a "lifestyle cyclist" and a lover of all things bicycle!