There’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing, so goes the popular mantra that many cyclists cling to over the winter.
It’s true though. With the right clothing, winter riding doesn’t need to be a miserable experience. But with poor clothing and bad decisions, riding in the wind, rain and mud can be horrible, just horrible; water creeps in through the seams, the wind rips through the delicate layers and your core temperature can plummet.
But if you invest in some of the latest mountain bike clothing made from the newest fabrics (and you really should) you won’t have the same excuse. With jackets made from the cleverest windproof and water resistant fabrics, insulated gloves, waterproof shorts and trousers and inexpensive additions like mudguards, plugging away through the winter months doesn’t need to have you fighting frost bite and hypothermia. You can actually enjoy the ride.
For me the aim at this time of year is a simple one, to just get out on the bike regularly enough to call myself a mountain biker. There’s no training plan, no push to neither increase fitness nor follow a schedule. I simply just want to get out and ride my back as much as life allows. And the weather permits.
Sometimes you have to take your rides when you get the chance though, fitting a ride in around life. And that doesn’t always coincided with nice weather. Sometimes it’ll be wet, raining, windy or dark, but so what – with the right mental approach and proper winter clothing, you don’t have to let such conditions put you off.
So having the right kit ready for whatever the weather is going to be is very important. New technological advances from the likes of Gore and new winter boots and accessories like gloves and neck warmers make tackling blustery, wet and cold days far more bearable. Which means my old list of excuses for not riding if the rain is pummelling the windows has become a lot shorter than it ever used to be. Which is a great thing because I’m riding my bike more than ever before now.
Roll on the winter, I’m ready for it. Are you? If you are, let’s see a show of hands in the comments section below.