Guide to Cycling in the Winter

Don’t let the cold slow you down! Just because it is starting to get a little chilly out there, does not mean you need to store your bike away and let it hibernate for the winter. With the proper gear and some safety tips, you can become a fearless winter warrior and bike your way into the springtime.

Gearing Up

Let’s not fool ourselves: wind chill is real and it’s just about the worst part of biking in the winter. But if you layer up properly, you’ll be juuuuust fine. Here’s what Pio Tsai, Bike Share extraordinaire, suggests:


PioMap

Safety Tips

  • Use bike lanes – Always, but especially when your peripheral vision is more impaired by your scarf/layers.
  • Be careful – When it rains or snows, remember to proceed slowly, especially over salted or sandy pavement that can tend to be slippery.
  • Be visible – Of course, if you’re ever traveling at night, it is important to wear something bright and to have front and rear lights on your bike. But in the winter, when there is less daylight in general, it’s important to always stay visible.
  • Be more aware – Sound tends to be muffled from winter wind and your ears might not be as alert when covered with a wool hat or scarf, so relying more on your other senses, especially your sight, is immensely important to staying safe and maintaining awareness of your surroundings.

3 comments

  1. Mike says:

    These are all wonderul guidelines for cycling in winter, however I would also have reiterated that to block out the sound of the traffic by choosing to wear headphones, earphones etc., is a dangerous choice.
    Having the sense of hearing gives a rider knowledge of traffic coming from behind and potentially from the side, when your vision can’t.
    I always find it odd that a person would choose to block the world out, yet still put themselves in physical danger. The simple act of cycling can be deadly in any scenario. By obliteratating your sense of hearing you make it even more so.

    • Sophie says:

      That’s a great point! Of course, it’s important to keep all of your senses sharp when cycling. Especially in a city like New York where there is so much going on around you all the time. Thanks for chiming in, Mike!

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