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How Low Can You Go?
 Did member offline
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Home: Crozet, VA 
Specialized Roubaix Expert SL4
Road bike
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posted 11/12/2018
at 9:41:43 PM
viewed 896 times
With the mercury falling these days, my question is: At what point do you decide NOT to ride?

In recent years, my cutoff has been 40 degrees. Any colder than that, I ride my trainer indoors. When I lived in Chicago and was accustomed to colder temperatures, my cutoff was 30 and only if the streets were clear of ice and snow. Once I remember riding when it was 25 degrees.



 singlespeed member offline
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Home: Waxahachie, TX 
Ross mt st helens
Single Speed Road bike
posted 11/12/2018
at 11:55:51 PM
post #1 viewed 434 times
If I can get thru the first mile without turning back I'm Usually good into the 20's I rode today and fought the urge to just give it up. It was a balmy 39 but the wind was Northwest Gusting to 29! Had a little mist too at the beginning of the ride. But It's really worth it felt realty good to do 20 plus in adverse conditions!

 Grateful_G member offline
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Bacchetta Corsa
SWB Recumbent bike
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posted 11/13/2018
at 12:51:00 AM
post #2 viewed 431 times
When I just HAVE to get somewhere and a bike is the only vehicle available, I've never hesitated to wrap up and go - (provided there's not ice and/or snow on the ground). So I'm sure that I've ridden in single digit temps - but not for very far. It's actually quite exhilarating.

 cmoore member offline
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Felt FC
Road bike
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posted 11/13/2018
at 5:43:20 AM
post #3 viewed 427 times
The wind dictates more than the temp for me. If it's in the 40's and blowing hard I usually stay inside. If it's in the 30's and calm I'm probably pedaling.

 ptsbike member offline
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custom built LT Bikes
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Tri-Cities Road Club
posted 11/13/2018
at 7:05:13 AM
post #4 viewed 420 times
10 degrees is my record. I only rode enough to get a qualifying day for the 250 Days Challenge.

 BikeLady member online
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posted 11/13/2018
at 7:26:12 AM
post #5 viewed 416 times
I once commuted on a day when the temp was 12 degrees...and that was the first day I got a flat. I think I set a speed record for changing it.

I used to say that I would stop riding outside when it took longer to dress and undress than I could stand to be out riding, but as I get older, I'm less interested in freezing while I ride. So my lower limit is probably in the 30s now.

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Motobecane Super Mirage
Road bike
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posted 11/13/2018
at 7:39:00 AM
post #6 viewed 414 times
I don't refrain from riding just because it's cold. Of course, I live in the Southeastern United States, so that's nothing to brag about. I think my coldest start is +18F.

I did go on a nominal (10k, I think) ride at +11F once, while I was visiting my Mom in Maine, just to prove I could. (I was hoping for single digits, but I didn't get out early enough.) I had my cold weather gear with me, but I didn't have my cool weather gear, which I'd typically wear under my cold weather stuff for temps like that.
post edited on 11/13/2018 at 8:11:50 AM

 GeeWizMan member offline
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Bacchetta Carbon Corsa
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posted 11/13/2018
at 7:43:58 AM
post #7 viewed 412 times
In years past, I had no temp that would keep me from riding. After going through my journal for January and February from 2008 up to 2015, I found lots of single digit rides and a few in the negatives with the coldest temp being -7F with 9 mph winds. Cold temps and big winds did not really stop me from riding, but snow and ice did when it got deep. I did use studded snow tires and they do help when the snow is not too deep or the ice too rutted.

That was the past, now that I'm an old fart, I don't feel like riding in snowy and icy conditions like we have today with a fresh couple of inches on the ground. I am not sure how cold it will have to get to keep me off the bike now, but I'm thinking that temps under 20 might be my limit now. I hope it doesn't get that cold and I hope we don't get too much snow for the remainder of the year because I don't want to lose too much bike riding fitness before going to Florida for a couple of months where I usually can ride to my heart's content.

 tojesky member offline
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 ICE VTX+
Trike Recumbent bike
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Team Vite Racing
posted 11/13/2018
at 9:11:47 AM
post #8 viewed 401 times
Earlier this decade, I had a few rides in the 30s - 12 total. But none recently. Age and retirement has tempered what I will ride in since I can wait until the afternoon when it is warmer. And all of those rides in the 30s were group rides so we "froze" in company. The only issues I recall and can read in my log comments is that the usual cold fingers and toes were experienced. Being on the Gulf coast, we didn't experience the really cold weather too often so there was a minimal investment in cold weather gear.

 podkey member offline
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Ti Cycles Ren Titanium
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posted 11/13/2018
at 10:13:11 AM
post #9 viewed 396 times
Yeah I think that my record was about 12 degrees. I was dressed for it and had chemical warmers in my shoes and mittens plus mitten covers. Gosh can't imagine getting a flat and changing that.

 KrateKraig member offline  
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Home: Roscoe, IL 
Specialized Turbo Levo HT Comp Fat
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posted 11/13/2018
at 12:32:37 PM
post #10 viewed 386 times
-10F is my lowest so far but that was a few years ago. Once it gets to double digits below zero it gets to the point where I'm not willing to spend more money for warmer gear. The threat of frostbite vs the enjoyment factor is my biggest issue below -10F.

Now that I'm restricted to only riding e-bikes, I'm thinking cold weather battery performance may be a greater determiner of my low temperature riding now. Although after looking at my journal, I did do a 2.5 hour e-bike ride with a low of -6F and a high of 9F.

I will say that Fat-Biking is way different than road riding in the cold as speeds are much slower so wind chill is not a factor, and you're also usually in the woods protected from the wind. And the extra effort of riding in the snow, when conditions aren't perfect, warms your body quite efficiently.
post edited on 11/14/2018 at 12:01:22 AM
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