Unfortunately I had to cancel my audax plans for this weekend also, meaning just one last chance to fit in a 200 km this January next Saturday. However, snow and cold weather has its benefits: it is great for mountain biking and areas that are normally too wet/muddy become ridable again.
|Along the Lee Valley canal, -2C|
|Rolling into the Forest|
|Soft snow has a good grip, if you have knobbly tyres|
|Obligatory picture before heading back home|
By 11:30 am we decided to turn back home, and by then, we had endured more than 3 hours of continuous snow. The canal path was completely covered by snow, as was the water itself, but that made for a nice ride back. Not many cyclists had been on it yet, but as the snow was still soft and fluffy, we had no trouble averaging more than 20 km/h on the return leg.
|Heading back. On the right, the frozen and snow-covered canal|
My kit held up ok, although both toes and fingers suffered a bit from the cold. In such conditions it is normal for people to use bike mittens or even ski gloves. I just took liners and winter gloves, but that did not do the trick. They got wet far too early, and with the wind, my fingers felt painful for a good while. I learnt my lesson for the next time.
My toes, however, seemed all right - I had thick wool socks and theoretically water-proof sealskinz socks. I wore my only mtb shoes, which are meant to be summery ones, with plenty of ventilation. As I was showering, I could feel the tingle on my toes, and they seemed far too red. Perhaps I could do with overshoes on the next cold ride?
|The bike. A good cleanup will be needed...|
|The rider. It was cold and snowing|