As some of you know I have challenged myself to riding my bike everyday in the month of December here in cold, snowy Rochester, NY. With another eleven days to go, I have struggled with some of the realities of winter biking, the largest of which has been ice. I can stand the cold and even the wind, but the ice that has formed on the paths and roadways I like to ride has been a bit daunting. I find myself truly hoping for a meltdown on the roads before I have one myself.
We always tell women on tour that there is no shame in walking a section of road if it is too steep for them. I found myself taking that advice yesterday when my own street was a sheet of slick ice. I walked two blocks before beginning my ride on a well salted main street. I am riding a fatbike with four inch wide tires so I am on the best bike I could be for this endeavor, but I have to admit, there are some instances where riding a bike is just not a good idea.
While searching for advice on winter cycling technique I found this quote in a forum on ice biking:
“Ice can be rideable, or it can be so slippery that you'll crash just holding a straight line, but experience will teach you the warning signs. Treat winter cycling as a learning experience, always. It will turn you into one heck of a bike handler.”
Sage advice to be sure. I am enjoying the challenge and riding the fatbike is great fun. It has been beautiful seeing my favorite biking places in the cover of snow, but I am going to heed the warning signs of that shiny ice and walk when the going gets too slippery. - Annette