Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Riding in Snow and Ice and Whatever that other Stuff is

I've ridden more outdoors this winter than any of my other Minnesota years. During my rides through the snow, ice, and slop, I've thought about the different techniques it takes to get through each type.

I don't know if I can relay any helpful tips. I think experience is the best guide in this case. But I have noticed slush is much like sand. I'm never sure how it will deflect my front wheel, but I know that I overcorrect and get into a wiggle. After a few wiggles, I settle down and make the correct steering inputs to control the bike.

I think when riding on sheer ice, it's best to poop your pants, because you are going to fall and the poop will cushion the impact.

However, due to the recent mild weather, I don't need any technique. I just ride and listen to the crackle of the studs on the pavement. Tomorrow, I'm breaking out the yard-sign bike. You may remember that I put together an old frame in the fall and built its fenders from political yard signs. The bike rode like a wheelbarrow. Yesterday, I installed a much longer stem and I hope that cures the problems. I very hopeful, because I really like the looks of the bike and I'd love to show it off in person at Saturday's HC ride.


Jeff Moser said...

The poop your pants comment made me laugh. It's been freezing here, but there hasn't been much ice to speak of. I hit a rare patch of it the other day. First my rear tire went out to the right, put my left foot down to catch myself, and then that foot started going out. Barely recovered. I was pretty impressed with my quick draw on the clipless pedals. Still, it nearly scared the poop out.

Matt_J said...

I've been riding on a lot of ice this last week. All kids of ice-- hard and black, hidden under powder, sanded, salted, knobbed. So far no slop though, knock on wood. The best thing you can hope for with slop is a nice vehicle rut to take you through.

Snakebite said...

Why not post some before and after pictures of the wheelbarrow bike?

Sophzilla said...

You surely would be visible riding that bike! I hope you don't have to use the poop technique this winter. Do you bring an extra pair of pants to work just in case?

rigtenzin said...

I'll take some photos today on my lunch time ride.

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