Getting outside on a bright sunny day in winter can be so rewarding. It may be cold, but fresh air and exercise can do wonders for the body and soul. That said, at this time of year the roads can get very dirty; tractors leave mud behind, and the roads often stay wet all day. Salt on the road, although great for de-icing, also makes for unpleasant riding.
So here are a few tips and tricks for cycling on wintry roads and caring for your bike during such conditions...
- Dirt can easily build up on your bike and will sometimes even clog mudguards making them act almost like a brake. To counter this make sure you have plenty of clearance between the tyre, frame and mudguards.
- Wash your bike down after a ride to get rid of any mud and salt. This will prevent the brakes, gears and wheels from getting clogged and seizing up. And don't forget to lubricate them afterwards!
- Running slightly lower tyre pressures can help your bike grip the roads when they are icy or greasy, but don’t run them so low that your tyre rims hit the ground over bumps.
Increasing numbers of people are turning to indoor training with online aids and apps making it more appealing.
This is great when the weather is terrible, but personally I don’t think you can beat cycling outdoors with that fresh air hitting your face!