When you list your all time favourite rides on your Lug+Carrie, we can only assume that a ride in the cold, rainy weather won’t be one of them. The winter months are enough to put you off leaving your house, let alone going for a ride. But, if you are braving the weather on two wheels, we’ve got a few tips to keep you safe on the saddle.
Wear lots of thin layers
It’s easy to get hot and sweaty when you’re riding your bike, even in winter.
Rather than chucking on your biggest puffer jacket and over-heating, wearing multiple thin layers means you can take things on and off so you don’t end up hot and bothered when you arrive at your destination.
Rather than buying ‘shower-proof’ jackets, make sure that you are wearing quality waterproofs while out on your bike.
Waterproof hats, gloves, jackets and trousers will keep you dry and (relatively) warm whatever the weather. A breathable material is essential so you don’t overheat. Bonus points if it comes in bright colours, like these from Cleverhood (a brand we hope to stock by winter!) For your feet, we swear by Merry People, but some riders prefer waterproof shoe covers. You can find these at most bike shops.
Pop on a cap under your helmet.
Air vents in helmets are great in the heat, not so much in the rain. A cheap cycling cap worn under your helmet keeps your head warm, with the peak giving extra protection for your eyes against the spray.
What about the kids?
Kids are more resilient than you think. As long as they are warm and dry, you can keep riding through the winter with them happily on the back. As above, the same rules apply to your backseat riders: Lots of layers, a waterproof jacket and, perhaps one of our most favourite accessories, the Storm Shield will ensure your family ride is still an option, no matter the weather.
No riding through muddy puddles
Peppa might love them, but you should steer clear of them. Standing water not only gets you wet, it can be dangerous as you never know how deep the puddle actually is. When you see standing water, check over your shoulder before moving safely out to ride around the puddle.
Keep clear of the jacarandas in Brissie, Tram tracks in Melbourne, and manhole covers as they can be unexpectedly slippery.
Staying visible to motorists is always a good idea, but it’s especially important during the cold months when there is less light, and drivers aren’t expecting to see cyclists. This is why a lot of cold weather cycling gear comes in high-visibility color options. You don’t need to go full neon, but adding one or two high-vis pieces to your kit will help your silhouette stand out against a grey winter backdrop.
Clean your bike after
After you ride in the rain, it’s a good idea to spray your bike down with clean water to wash away any dirt and grime that built up during your ride. A sport top water bottle works well for this. Just squeeze the bottle to spray clean water where you need it. Alternatively, a bucket of warm water and a sponge will do the trick as well.
So what are you waiting for? There’s no reason not to have as much fun riding in winter as you do the rest of the year, even if your rides are a little shorter than before. Make a good move: Bundle up, hop on your Lug+Carrie, and keep riding into that (much earlier than usual) sunset. You’ll feel better for doing it, trust me.