Winter riding gear!- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Winter riding gear!

    Hello,

    I just recently bought a fatbike and i'm very much looking forward to getting out and doing some winter riding! I've never done any winter riding so i don't really know what to expect as far as what i'm going to need for gear. Any suggestions would be great!

  2. #2
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    The two primary gear items to look at would be warm boots and pogies. If you keep your hands and feet warm, the rest is easy. If hands and feet are cold, you will be miserable. Spend the money for good equipment on those two items. The rest you can work on with practice to see what works for you. Each person is different. The only consistent thing is to have layers so you can adjust if needed along the way. You might be surprised how little clothing you will need on the rest of your body if you hands and feet stay warm.

  3. #3
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    The other big suggestion I'd make is XC skiing gear. That's what most of us wear, pants, jackets that are similar (soft shells), etc. They encounter similar temps, speeds and exertion. But yeah, spend money on feet and pogies. Lake spd boots are barely sufficient and many times are too cold without additional measures. Flat pedals and snow boots are warmer.

    A good 90% of the time in the winter all I needed for my core was a long sleeve "sports" wicking t shirt and my softshell and craft XC ski pants (very popular around here). Any more and I'd be sweating and then I'd be in danger if I slowed down, due to the sweat making me cold. You want to be kind of chilly/cold when you start, because you are going to generate a lot more heat when you ride. Watch out for downhills though, that's where your extremities are important (that you protected them adequately).
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  4. #4
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    Feet

    That's the tricky one. I have a system dialed in. I really like being clipped in, and have evolved from an old pair of Lake boots that did nothing good for you under 20 degrees. I had overboot glued to the outer sole of the Lake boot and would throw a hot hand on the toes on cold days. That worked pretty well. Picked up the 45 North Wolvhammers and a pair of gaiters from an online distributor I can't remember anymore. They fit over the entire boot. With a gaiter and hot hand and those boots riding at any temp for as long as you wanted is good. Last year with it so warm, the boots alone were good.

    Bring a spare/dry shirt in your bag, and a windbreaker along with your soft-shell.Descending after ascending can feel like a significant temperature drop. I forgot my shell once and ended up at Glen Alps from Muldoon. That, was unpleasant even at 20 degrees.
    "Having lack of self-preservation makes biking more fun."

  5. #5
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    Carhartts and sorel boots
    ptarmigan hardcore

  6. #6
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    Munky! Long time no see!

    Start with Pogies and snowshoeing type boots. At costco they sell boxes of chemical hand and foot warmers. Don't be shy about using them when you need to. When my feet get really cold I just get off and run a little bit. The blood will rush down to your legs and your feet will warm up quickly.

    Dress in layers. You should start out a little cold and you will warm up as you get moving.

  7. #7
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    Hey thanks for the all the replies guys! I guess ill just have to try some stuff out, and come up with my own system! Definitely going to pick up some pogies.

    How about lights? whats everyone running?

  8. #8
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    I am mostly going to be commuting from ER to Anchorage on my Fargo, but might find some packed trails to ride on the weekends. I prefer to ride clipped in, but the Wolvhammers are really expensive compared even to ski boots.
    So I am wondering how many people use boots like the the Wolvhammers are really expensive compared even to ski boots vs just buying some platform pedals and winter boots?

  9. #9
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    Winter riding gear!

    Good flats with long studs (I replaced mine with longer ones from the hardware store) grip really well on winter boots. Salomon makes some great light weight ones. Somewhere here there is a good thread on boots. I either started it or was involved, I can't remember. I do remember lots of great recommendations for boots with flats.

    EDIT: found it. http://forums.mtbr.com/showthread.php?t=934316

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elfbkr50 View Post

    Bring a spare/dry shirt in your bag, and a windbreaker along with your soft-shell.Descending after ascending can feel like a significant temperature drop. I forgot my shell once and ended up at Glen Alps from Muldoon. That, was unpleasant even at 20 degrees.
    Yeah, this is great advice, and coming down any of our bigger descents can leave you chilled to the bone. Often I would climb up South Fork or Middle Fork trail, get to Glen Alps, put on another layer underneath my wind-proof soft-shell, and descend with that additional layer, and let me tell you, that was ALWAYS a good decision. That's where you get cold, because you aren't putting out any heat anymore.

    I always try to have some bail-out gear with me, and mittens are far warmer than gloves for me, so the bail-outs are heavy mittens, that work well-enough with my shifters and brakes. I'll almost always have an extra torso layer in my pack, as well as my heavy balaclava.

    What Elf is saying makes sense too, because on the coldest days I simply put nylon running pants over my regular XC ski pants, thereby creating a layer of "warmer" air in between the layer next to my skin and the outside air, but since it's a running pant, it still breathes. Same thing with the torso. By "coldest" I mean down around -10F or colder (almost guaranteed colder in pockets back in Campbell Tract).

    There are also some nice insulated hydration packs to consider that are made for snowboarding and similar duty. The hose is internal to the shoulder strap accessed via a zipper. Not freeze-proof, but freeze resistant and resists better than a regular camelback with insulated hose. The one I have also has a cool compartment intended for avalanche probes that can be accessed while keeping the pack on, which I find works great for storing bear spray and my pump
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

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