Upcoming winter in Alabama
I have decided I will be biking all season here in central Alabama. However Ive never biked during the winter months, and was wondering if anyone had any general or specific tips to weather (i know nice pun) the upcoming winter season. The trails I ride are mostly Oak, Tannehill, Sylaward, and Red Mountain.
As a side note, anyone from anniston area have any tips on Coldwater Mountain in the winter? Ive never ridden the trail and really want to soon!
If it's real cold, layer up with quality clothing. Get stuff to cover your neck and face to keep the wind off. That's all I got.
Oh, and drink lots of water even of you don't feel thirsty.
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My first winter back in the south after being in the mid-west for a while so an adjustment here too. Thinking, no hoping, I've got more winter gear than I'll need : )
Generally speaking if I'm "park" riding (like Oak) I'll be more inclined to underdress a little and make sure I start out a little cold. If I'm headed out somewhere a little more remote I'll overdress to have the option of shedding but I'd rather be a little safer and not need it but have it if its going to be a long walk back should something happen.
Best winter gear investment ever, gore tex cold weather shoes. Went through a few winters without and made due with heavy socks and chem warmers, last couple with, man what a difference. Good gloves, maybe a mid weight and heavy weight to have options, and an insulated skull cap is a must.
Drink more water than you think you want to and if its really cold hot tea in an insulated bottle is heaven.
Get a set of arm and leg warmers, and a lightweight/packable wind vest. They are some of the best investments for cycling you can make. They can be used through a very wide range of temps, and easily taken off/packed away, when you warm up.
Get a set a synthetic thermals to layer under ^^, when necessary. (hint: buy smaller, so they'll be tight).
Get a set of shoe/toe covers (if you ride clipped in), and thin wool socks layered over thin silk socks.. or buy winter cycling shoes... otherwise wear boots, with flats.
Get some winter cycling gloves.
Get something to keep your ears warm, and I use a bandana to keep my nose and mouth warm, but not too warm. really just need something to cut the wind, not keep you warm IME. My head gets pretty hot.
If you plan on riding below/near freezing temps often, you'll like having full-on winter cycling tights, and winter cycling jacket. Mine rarely get used more than a couple of times a season, and I could make due without.
With average hi's in the 50's and low's in the low 30's, winter cycling in SE isn't that big of a deal usually, until you start night riding IME. The trick is layering right, 'cause you're going to warm up.
***You'll want to have something extra to put on, if you have to stop mid-ride... either something you started your ride wearing, and took off, or bring something extra.
That about "covers" it, I think.
Ex West alabama resident here.
Under 60* I wear arm and knee warmers and wool socks and maybe a vest.
Under 50* I wear a base layer and shoe covers.
Under 40* , I wear everything I own.
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