I finally put my studded tires on my mountain bike! This happens most every winter for me. When it gets cold and snowy I just stop riding :(…until I can not take it anymore and get my mountain bike all set up for winter riding.
I have said this many times before, ever since I moved out of the city I find it more difficult to commute by bike in the winter. I live in a rural area that is also in the commuter zone, with skinny roads. Once the snow falls the roads are even more skinny.
Riding in the cold, snow or ice is not the issue…it is getting hit by a car or snow plow! I do my best to stay out of the way. I leave late to miss the commuter traffic, I am lit up like a xmas tree and with my studded tires I can hold my line and not dart into traffic. I pull over a lot to let cars go by.
I use Innova brand studded tires. Not as nice or expensive as Nokians, but they work great and cost a lot less. I am a big fan of using a mtn bike in the winter and or a 26″ wheel bike with lots of snow clearance. I like the stability and cush of the fat tire. Other people like to use a 700c wheel and a skinner tire, which allows you to ride much faster and the skinnier tire cuts through the snow and gets to pavement much easier. I guess that is true, but I have busted my ass on black ice and I can say for sure that the fat 26″ tire with a lot of studs feels real good.
When you first put some new studs on your bike it feels so wonderful, but by the time spring rolls around you can’t wait to take these heavy things off!
I went through all my winter cloths last night and got everything all laid out. To ride all tear you really need a lot of cloths. To me there are two kinds of outdoor cloths…the dry ones and the wet ones. You do not want to work or ride home in cloths that are damp. You need doubles of hats, neck gators and gloves.
Each year I dream of making a perfect winter bike, but then end up just modifying my mtn bike to use. My mtn bike does not have a dyno hub [I wish it did]. I recently bought a new battery light for it and I am very impressed with it. It is a B&M Inox LED rechargable light. It has the same beam pattern as the IQ Dyno lights that I use and so far seems to hold a charge just fine.
I think my perfect winter bike would be a rather unusual set up. Maybe a Cargo bike or a Basket bike, set up low to the ground and with a step through frame [so you can bail out], dyno hub, disc brakes and maybe even an electric assist motor [like the Bionx system]. This would be a very expensive bike, so the major reason I have not made one for my self. Not to mention the time.
Speaking of time. I took a lot of time off for the Holidays, then we got snowed in for a few more days! I have been a slow road back to getting efficient in the shop and I was way late on delivering Michelle’s wonderful purple Mixte. But now it is on the way!