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  1. #16
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    2,050

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    Hi everyone
    Been riding to work almost every day- missed a couple days last week because I was fighting off a little cold and had my annual evaluation. I got back in the saddle for the coldest morning since last February- commuted in temps down to 31 degrees.

    Weekend rides are shorter than during the weeks before El Tour de Tucson.

    Saturday was a fun ride- we rode with a big group in fun outfits and with decorated bikes, to donate toys at a fire station in one of the lower income neighborhoods of Tucson. Nice camaraderie, and 4 tables of toys were donated. The fire station offered some very nice refreshments and lot of appreciation.

    This morning's commute was in the mid-50's- 25 degrees warmer than Friday. Tomorrow will depend on what the clouds do tonight. Might be low 40's when I leave, might be mid-50's....
    2016 Specialized Ruby Comp disc - Ruby Expert ti 155
    2010 Surly Long Haul Trucker - Jett 143

  2. #17
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,305
    Pretty sure I will not be getting in any road rides before the end of the year. Unless there's a warm up between the holidays and the roads get a little clearer, I am done. It's going to be frigid for the next few days, so I'll be going to spin, in addition to boot camp. Haven't looked at my mileage, but I know it's really, really low. Right now, I am thinking about x country skiing and motivation for next season!
    2015 Trek Silque SSL
    Specialized Oura

    2011 Guru Praemio
    Specialized Oura

  3. #18
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    northern Virginia
    Posts
    5,941
    I also might be done for the year. I only have one more weekend here before I leave town for the holidays. The weather might cooperate on Sunday, but that's still too far off to trust any forecasts. In the meantime the roads are covered with salt and more salt is being put down as they expect minor snow to fall later this week. All that salt is an asthma trigger for me. And just to top things off, I have some sort of cold/cough. Not the usual cold with the progression from sore throat to head congestion and sneezing then maybe a cough -- this one started with a cough along with some minor head congestion.

    I also expect my total mileage for the year to be low. I would like to think next year will be better but then again maybe I will need surgery on my ankle, since the torn tendon doesn't hurt a lot but it's not pain-free either.

    - Gray Trek Madone 4.7 road bike, mystery crack in top tube repaired by Calfee, Bontrager Affinity RXL saddle
    - Red Trek 6000 mountain bike, Bontrager Evoke WSD saddle

    Gone but not forgotten:
    - Silver Trek 2000 road bike
    - Two awesome and worn out Juliana saddles

  4. #19
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Traveling Nomad
    Posts
    6,773
    We braved some pretty brutal winds to ride today. Temps weren't bad at all -- about 62 at the start and 73 at the end, but the wind was sustained at 20+ and higher gusts. So the way out, we had a tailwind, and that was funnnnn, but that only made the way home that much harder. I was in the drops and easy gears and still lost 1.1 mph in my average speed from the turnaround point. Glad we rode (34 miles), but I could do with a bit less wind! Even at the end it felt a little chilly because of the wind, so the leg warmers and wind vest stayed on the entire ride.
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
    2004 Bike Friday Petite Pocket Crusoe - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow

  5. #20
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
    Posts
    908
    Still keeping my "ride everyday" record intact, even though we've had 4 inches of snow this week and are expecting another 4" tomorrow. Temps have not been anything cozy with temps in the single digits or teens when I ride.

    Sounds gruesome, I know, but it's really not. It's actually breathtaking beautiful to be riding in the snow covered winter woods and that clean cold air. I also find riding in the snow to be fascinating, too. By riding, every day, I've managed to get a good firm base built up, so, as long as I keep riding after each snow, it compacts down enough to make for an easier ride as I go. The ice and snow takes some of my most dangerous drops and turns out of my choice of trails to ride, but that's oaky. I still have trails that offer some steep, but still safe, climbs/drops.

    It's fat bikes, only, now, though I've pushed the 29x3 bikes to their limit in the snow, just to see what they could do. Now too deep even for them. Yup, if it's not fat, it's now tucked away in the shed for the winter and will re-emerge in the spring like our bears.
    Last edited by north woods gal; 12-12-2017 at 03:17 PM.

  6. #21
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    northern Virginia
    Posts
    5,941
    Quote Originally Posted by north woods gal View Post
    Still keeping my "ride everyday" record intact, even though we've had 4 inches of snow this week and are expecting another 4" tomorrow. Temps have not been anything cozy with temps in the single digits or teens when I ride.

    Sounds gruesome, I know, but it's really not. It's actually breathtaking beautiful to be riding in the snow covered winter woods and that clean cold air. I also find riding in the snow to be fascinating, too. By riding, every day, I've managed to get a good firm base built up, so, as long as I keep riding after each snow, it compacts down enough to make for an easier ride as I go. The ice and snow takes some of my most dangerous drops and turns out of my choice of trails to ride, but that's oaky. I still have trails that offer some steep, but still safe, climbs/drops.

    It's fat bikes, only, now. The other bikes are tucked away in the shed for the winter and will re-emerge in the spring like our bears.
    Brrrr. I will say that it helps me get through the winter weather that I dislike by thinking about people like you who actually do enjoy it.

    I assume that shed is not climate controlled -- do you find that the cold temps have any negative effects on the bikes that are stored there? I sometimes keep my mountain bike in a "storage shed" on my balcony (it's really a large plastic patio storage box, but Rubbermaid calls it a shed) but I always take the wheels off and keep them inside because I figure the extreme temperatures are not good for the rubber tires. But that's just an assumption on my part.

    - Gray Trek Madone 4.7 road bike, mystery crack in top tube repaired by Calfee, Bontrager Affinity RXL saddle
    - Red Trek 6000 mountain bike, Bontrager Evoke WSD saddle

    Gone but not forgotten:
    - Silver Trek 2000 road bike
    - Two awesome and worn out Juliana saddles

  7. #22
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    6,558
    I'm such a wuss. If it's cold--40's and below--I don't ride. But in my defense, that is cold for my location, and I'm not acclimated.
    So long as the wheels are still turning, life is good.

    Battswebb

    Pinarello Quattro~CAADX~ Zurich Lemond
    Specialized Romin Saddles


    Surly Karate Monkey!!!

  8. #23
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
    Posts
    908
    Quote Originally Posted by ny biker View Post
    Brrrr. I will say that it helps me get through the winter weather that I dislike by thinking about people like you who actually do enjoy it.

    I assume that shed is not climate controlled -- do you find that the cold temps have any negative effects on the bikes that are stored there? I sometimes keep my mountain bike in a "storage shed" on my balcony (it's really a large plastic patio storage box, but Rubbermaid calls it a shed) but I always take the wheels off and keep them inside because I figure the extreme temperatures are not good for the rubber tires. But that's just an assumption on my part.
    Have found no ill effects at all with storage over the winter as long as the bike is totally protected from the snow. I also make sure to lube the chain before storage to prevent any rusting, but that's standard maintenance thing, anyway. About the only thing that needs attention when I pull them out of the shed in the spring, is the tire pressure. Only rarely has a tire gone flat, but that's one way to find out if a tire has a long term leak.

    Sheila, conditioning is very much a part of it. Absolutely right. Takes a long time, too. If I went from even the 50s to the teens, overnight, I'd be hurting. It's also activity based. If I'm biking or XC skiing, I don't mind it at all. But if I'm just walking across a parking lot while shopping, I really, really notice the cold. No way could I just sit around in this cold for long. Love my bicycling for keeping me slim and trim, but that doesn't leave me with enough body fat to stay comfy in the cold unless I'm active.

    As for today's ride ... looking at about 6" of snow, by the time it ends, this afternoon. Will certainly do some peddling, but, first, it's time to do my first XC ski outing for the season. Yippee!

  9. #24
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,305
    So true, North Woods. I chose to go to the gym this morning for a half hour spin/half hour conditioning class, instead of hiking with a group before my bike club's Chanukah party. Why? It's 18 degrees out, with a wind chill of 8. The hike is 4 miles, I've done it 3 times, and they are slow! I have x country skied down to -10 with no issues, but yes, just being out in this type of weather, without vigorous activity is not my favorite.
    Now I get to go eat lots of delicious food in about 30 minutes.
    2015 Trek Silque SSL
    Specialized Oura

    2011 Guru Praemio
    Specialized Oura

  10. #25
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
    Posts
    908
    Well, yesterday's 6 inches of snow nearly doomed my ride every day record. Kept it going by pushing the bike out to our neighborhood road that had just been plowed and doing a couple of miles. No go on the trails until I do some grooming (as in shoveling or the snow blower). Also added in several miles of XC skiing, my first outing of the year.

    So, for those of you who are curious about riding a fat bike in the snow, here's a little primer.

    5 or 6 inches of snow is, in general, the cutoff point for fat bikes with their 4" plus tires as for snow depth (half of that for plus bikes with their 3" tires). Depends very much on the type of snow, however. A fresh soft, fluffy 6" is very doable with a fat bike, but a fresh, densely packed, fine-grained or mushy 6" is another story. The bike just fishtails like crazy and can't get traction. Interestingly, if I give this new snowfall a few days or a week of "weathering", it can sometimes be ridden. Given enough time and daily fluctuating of temps, it will usually compress and firm up, allowing enough traction, especially if we get a thaw and the snow develops a crust.

    Can be ridden is a relative notion, though. When the snow gets this deep, you lose all your roll, as when you stop pedaling, the bike comes to an instant dead stop. You then have a serious problem of getting the bike moving, again, even on level ground. You can't stand on the pedals to mount the bike, because it takes too much weight off the rear wheel and the bike loses traction - the rear wheel just spins underneath you. Usually I try to find a slight downhill slope to get rolling, again, but that sometimes means walking the bike to a better spot. (For this depth, I highly recommend wearing XC ski gaiters. You will be doing some walking.)

    Lastly, the number of calories per pedal stroke to keep the bike moving in the heavy stuff goes though the roof. I'm good for maybe a mile and then my legs feel like noodles. It's like setting your indoor trainer at its very max. As mentioned, we're at the limit, here, so when it gets like this, I just wait for our neighborhood roads to get plowed and head out to ride the fat bike on the hard packed snow roads. Those big tires do a great job on a freshly plowed road. Ideal bike for riding plowed ice-packed or snow packed roads, but that's another story.
    Last edited by north woods gal; 12-14-2017 at 07:53 AM.

  11. #26
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
    Posts
    908
    I should also mention that plowing though 6" or more of new snow with XC skies is no picnic, either, but I do have the right skis for it. I use true expedition, relatively wide and short Alpina Discovery XC skis. These make a good ski to break the trail (gaiters are a must) and usually after two or three passes on the trail, I'm moving along pretty good. I sometimes use the snowshoes in the same way.

    The reason I mention this is that grooming a trail for the fat bikes was first done with snowshoes. Takes a lot of passes with the snowshoes to get the trail fat bike ready, but it is doable. (Another way is with a snowmobile, but have no interest in those beasts.) These days, though, there are machines that do it. If you live in an area with a lot of snow, such as ours, there will likely be some public trails that are groomed for fat bike snow riding, just as there are groomed trails for skiing. As always, though, I'm on my own with my private trails, so off I go to do some work.

  12. #27
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
    Posts
    908
    About 8" of snow, now, in the woods, so barring an unusual winter thaw, I doubt I'll see any green grass until late April or May. That would be in a normal year, but these past few winters have been anything but normal. We all know that global warming is a Chinese hoax, though, right? (What an idiot!)

    Still managed to do some trail riding, this week, by using the snowblower and shovel to clear one loop of my trials, but that is a LOT of work and, of course, it lasts only as long as the next snowfall. Doubt I can keep doing it all winter. Will end up doing most of my riding out on our winter roads, sooner or later. Got to keep my ride everyday thing going.

    The good news, though, is that the rest of my trail system is great for my XC skiing. Still a great workout and, of course, a joy to do in its own right, but I find that it is not quite as good for my wind as the bike work.

  13. #28
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Traveling Nomad
    Posts
    6,773
    Sounds chilly, NWG, but I guess that's par for the course this time of year!

    We managed three rides this past week, a little better than I thought with the cold fronts and an orthodontist appointment. Friday was the warmest day, and we actually got to ride in shorts and short sleeves, although it was a little chilly at the beginning.

    The week coming up we are heating back up again and will have upper 70s to mid 80s (!!?!?!) every day, so it looks like lots of riding in only a single layer of clothing. Love that! Sure, it doesn't feel a lot like the week before Christmas, but I prefer it to the alternative.
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
    2004 Bike Friday Petite Pocket Crusoe - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow

  14. #29
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    california
    Posts
    1,249
    I always feel better posting about nice weather riding this time of year after someone has just done it….thanks Emily!!!!

    Yesterday, with Alex and two friends, we went for a ride south on the beach bike path and then into the Palos Verdes hills for some climbing. Perfect weather and just a pleasant day of being with friends. My riding has just been commutes and urban for what seems too long so it felt good to do some harder riding. We’re heading north to Mendocino Ca later this week to spend the holidays with Ellie and some friends. Looking forward to riding roads through giant redwoods again, relaxing and being with good people for 8 days.




    a very nice rv campground next to the beach and bike path at Dockweiler state park for you Emily










    btw…Alex starts IVF procedures next month and we are soooooo looking forward to that!!!!!!
    ‘The negative feelings we all have can be addictive…just as the positive…it’s up to
    us to decide which ones we want to choose and feed”… Pema Chodron

  15. #30
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    north woods of Wisconsin
    Posts
    908
    Quote Originally Posted by rebeccaC View Post
    I always feel better posting about nice weather riding this time of year after someone has just done it….thanks Emily!!!! ...
    Hey, I feel better, too.

    Seriously, I do. Love my snow biking, but the snow adds even more of a challenge to an already challenging type of riding. You have to be on full, red alert to just make it down the trail. Loose your concentration for even an instant and you risk stalling or worse. Relaxing, it is not. Right, now, I'd give just about anything for a nice clean section of pavement on a sunny, warm day.

    Those pics, Rebecca, relax me and warm me right up. Brightens up my day. Thanks.

 

 

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