Riding in a Cool Breeze Winter Guide

Beautiful sunrises, sunsets and misty roads. This is the sight you’ll be missing out on if you find excuses to bail on winter riding. We admit it’s challenging to get out of your comfort zone. But winter riding has many advantages, including maintaining fitness. It also helps you overcome the winter blues since exercising can boost emotional well-being. However, winter riding requires certain preparation beforehand to ensure it is safe.

To keep your motivation up and your fun factor high, here are a few winter cycling tips that can help you stay comfortable and safe while riding:

Wear multiple layers:
Before we move on, putting pressure over layering your body parts that quickly get chilly is essential. Since your head is where most of your body heat escapes, it is vital to wear a woollen cap or a balaclava underneath your helmet to keep you warm. For hand protection, put on riding gloves that completely cover your fingers. Consider putting on two pairs of thermal socks and shoe covers to keep the wind off your feet. Further, put on layers, including a thin, breathable outer jacket that is wind- and water-resistant, to keep your torso warm.

Protecting the skin from absorbing the cold breeze should be your priority to prevent frostbite or numbness.

Map out your route beforehand:
Look out for any hurdle in your route. Try to map out your routes and check if rerouting is required. Make sure the road is reasonably clear of debris and safe for cycling. Further, when travelling during the cold, shorten your journey. Otherwise, you risk running out of energy or simply becoming too cold while being away from home.

Make sure you are visible to drivers:
Drivers don’t anticipate seeing bikers on the road in the winter. Dark hours might make it challenging, but a good set of bicycle headlights and a rear flasher will increase your visibility. Even if you aren’t riding after dark, use reflectors, lights and wear brightly coloured clothing.

Ensure your cycle is in good condition:
This is a universal winter cycling tip. Regularly clean the bike’s chain, gears, brakes, and wheel rims. It will also help if you lubricate the chain and gears more frequently. To ensure it is in good shape, you should get a tune-up at your neighbourhood bike shop at the beginning and end of the winter.

Make a checklist before departing!
Always carry warm beverages or soups in insulated bottles to provide sufficient heat to your body and keep it hydrated. Before riding, treat yourself to a good hot meal and check for the air pressure in your tires and levers for the throttle, gears, brakes, and clutch, as they may become stiff due to lower temperatures.

Lastly, ensure you and your bike are fully prepared for the winter before embarking on your cycling journey. Cycling in the winter can be safe and pleasant if you prepare properly with the necessary clothing and knowledge. Join HDOR’s challenges to get the best riding experience to make your lifestyle healthier and happier.