Riding in bad weather? Here is advice from the experts!
Many thanks to Eric Minghella for sharing this information!
Cycling is a healthy and environmentally friendly way to get from Point A to Point B anytime of the year. Unfortunately, the commute can become a little more challenging if you’re riding in crummy weather. If you’re committed to ditching your car or simply just want to go for a ride regardless of the weather, here are some top tips for riding safely in any conditions:
Riding in the Rain
Choose your clothing wisely—it’s much harder to see cyclists when it’s raining, so you’ll want to wear reflective clothing. This is much more eye-grabbing than wearing fluorescent clothing on darker days when there’s heavy cloud coverage.
Use fenders—you’ll need to add fenders to your front and rear wheels to prevent water and mud from splashing up onto your bike or your clothing. Fenders will also prevent water from drenching other cyclists behind you!
Avoid metal surfaces—manhole covers, rail road tracks, and other metal surfaces will be very slick when it’s raining. Avoid riding over metal at all costs, but if you must go over metal terrain, be sure to be pointing your handlebars straight.
Riding in the Snow
Use an old bicycle—you can definitely buy a fat tire bike if you’re so inclined, but if you’d rather not spend an additional $1,500, an old mountain bike you use infrequently is fine.
Add reflectors and lights to your bike—if you’re riding your bicycle during the winter, it’s likely you’ll be on the road when it’s dark out. Adding reflectors to the sides of your bike and even your helmet will go a long way in helping motorists and pedestrians see you at night.
Leave plenty of space ahead—you’ll need a lot more time to stop in the snow, as will motorists. Give yourself at least twice as much space in front to stop while cycling in the snow to ensure that you’ll have enough time to stop at lights, crosswalks, intersections, etc.
Lower your tire pressure—going down in psi will give you more traction in the snow, giving you more grip when climbing hills, turning, or coming to a stop.
Riding in Blazing Heat
Drink water (a lot of it)—you’ll need to consume much more water than usual when riding on a hot summer day. Try to consumer one water bottle (16-20 oz) every hour when on long summer rides. This is especially important when dealing with “dry heat,” or a day with very low humidity.
Wear a hat under your helmet—the extra visor will help protect your eyes from the sun, as well as give your face some additional shade. It should go without saying that you should always wear sunscreen on any exposed areas as well.
Acclimate to the weather—if the forecast calls for a week of temperatures in the mid-90s, consider starting off with some shorter rides and eventually getting used to the heat before tackling your usual longer rides.
This article was provided by www.personalinjury-law.com, an organization dedicated to providing the public with information about personal injury and safety information. Nothing in this article should be construed as legal advice, and it is intended for informational use only. Be sure to review your local cycling ordinances to ensure you ride safe and legally.