Friday, December 17, 2010

Slick times

Faced another delay in riding this week following a back spasm Saturday night. Finally got back on the X this morning. Temp was around 25 F with 10 mph winds from the WSW. About 1" of light, fluffy snow fell during the night, covering everything with a nice blanket of white. The roads, however, were another story. Under the snow was quite a lot of slick patches of packed/frozen snow and melted/refrozen snow. I almost dumped twice in areas I normally have no difficulty negotiating. I am sure I'd have hit hard if not for the studded tires. Thankfully, the afternoon's ride found clear roads.

Thursday, December 9, 2010


I managed to ride in yesterday - in snow, ice, 15 degree weather and 3 degree wind chill. Why? Because I pretty much had t0, given one car's in the shop and the other was needed to transport our daughter (still recovering from strep at the time) to care with Grandma. Ride in was a bit anxiety provoking as I hadn't ridden in 2.5 weeks. Ride home was fine. This morning, however, my legs were exhausted and my sense of balance was all off. I'm still pretty tired (lack of sleep doesn't help) and hope to get to sleep early tonight. Won't get to ride again until Saturday or Monday, when lows are to be in the single digits. Hmm....

Sunday, December 5, 2010


Stomach flu Round 2 for our daughter just put biking today on hold. Rats... Hopefully, the rest of the family will stay well.


Just went out and adjusted my Power Grips to allow my new hiking boots to slip in and out during winter commuting. Freshly recharged batteries now in place. Took the X for a spin up and down the alley and everything is in working order. Commuting clothes are ready. All I need now is motivation boost at 5:30 a.m. tomorrow to get out and ride again. Your well wishes and prayers are appreciated!

On cold and snow.

There's an interesting little discussion on winter commuting over at BikeCommuters. I contributed a bit regarding why I use studded tires:
Anthony, I put mine on at the end of October to 1) get used to the extra rolling resistance and 2) be prepared for ice – can happen any time here. Big snow accumulation is not the issue. It’s the packed down light stuff – even small amounts – that turns intersections and blown snow/drifted areas into skating rinks. Then there’s freezing rain to face and, of course, pack melted or rutted and iced over snow. I’ve wiped out in all those circumstances from St. Louis, to Ann Arbor, to our small city in northern Indiana – all without studded tires. Since using studs two years ago I haven’t wiped out – at all. That means no injuries and no damage to my all-around bike. With these tires, I often feel more secure riding my bike in the winter than driving. This gives *me* peace of mind and has saved me $$ and pain (emo and physical). Safe riding to you, no matter what tires you ride on.

I currently am feeling way out of shape due to a challenging case of stomach flu followed by a very intense week of work. Really hoping to get on the bike and ride, despite the cold. Current forecast calls for snow and temps ranging from mid 20's to mid-teens. As I write, we're getting lake effect snow and freezing rain. Should be interesting riding!

On a positive note, I heard from a local recent reader that my post about Cli-Mitts was of use. My thanks him and others who inspired my return to the adventures of bicycle commuting. Now to get back on my bike and ride!