Winter Cycling Gear Top Tips

The temperature is decreasing, the sky is full of cloudy, snowy weather, and you desire to go horseback riding. You have three choices – purchase a pass to Hawaii, hop aboard the simulator, or face the frigid temperatures.

The solution for us would be to purchase a plane ticket to Hawaii, but unfortunately, not many of us can go on a spontaneous journey and would still like to be able to spend time outdoors.

Riding a bicycle in the autumn and winter months can be either thrilling or an absolute nightmare. This article will help you avoid the latter. Clothing for cyclists is designed with breathable materials to keep them warm and dry during prolonged trips in chilly weather.

Essential gear for winter cycling

1. Neck tube

An essential but often overlooked part of winter clothing is a neck tube or neck warmer.

Neck tubes are an ideal winter item for cyclists who would like to appear stylish as well as stay cosy. This accessory is perfect for keeping your neck warm, and it creates a barrier for breathing when the outside temperature is dangerously cold for small animals.

We prefer this Buff one over all the others, despite them being quite alike. This item is elastic, comfortably warm, and constructed out of recycled polyester and elastane. It can be used as a head wrap, neck scarf, or cap.

2. Cycling base layer

The insulation your garments provide will help keep you warm, and the more layers of clothing you put on, the better protected you will be from the cold. Essential, then, is a high-quality base layer.

In the wintertime, make sure your clothing has long sleeves and think about selecting merino wool, which is perfect for retaining heat but, because it is air permeable, enables moisture to dissipate. Better yet, it’s less stinky than synthetics.

This item is gentle on the skin and available in calming hues. It can be utilized for activities such as cycling, going for a hike, or just hanging out.

3. Mid layer

Depending on the temperature, a garment which can be worn as an additional layer under an outer layer can also be used as the main layer of clothing.

It is desirable to have a medium-weight winter jersey to stay warm when it is dry, yet not become too hot when you put on an extra layer for protection.

This type of shirt fits snugly and is well-insulated, making it perfect for cyclists who frequently ride all year round in the United Kingdom. This Le Col Aqua Zero long sleeve is an outstanding choice.

If it starts to rain, hydrophobic rain protection can offer some protection, while the sublimated panelling can keep you warm. This jersey features an easy-to-use full-length zip, three convenient pockets, a slim race-style fit, and a reflective stripe, providing both practicality and trendy style.

4. Bib tights

When it comes to bib tights for winter riding, investing in quality is important if you want your clothing to last. You should get a pair that is lined with fleece, as the cold wind can penetrate unlined pairs and make your feet cold.

Raphael’s Pro Team winter bib tights offer warmth and cosiness, featuring a high front and long-length back that is beneficial for maintaining warmth during the cold winter months. These are great for trips that have varying types of terrain and weather, and they are equipped with strong braces and reflective details.

5. Cycling gloves

When the temperature decreases, your fingers and toes are likely to feel the effects more quickly than the rest of your body, especially if your blood flow is not at its best.

Taking that point into consideration, it is sensible to ensure that the gloves you buy are a correct fit, as if they are too small this may interfere with your circulation.

Gloves for winter weather typically fall into three distinct types: lightweight (great for relatively mild rides in autumn/spring), windproof (perfect for chilly, dry days), and waterproof (these will block out the rain).

GripGrab’s gloves fit well when considering the amount of insulation you need along with the size of the gloves.

The gloves are extremely skilful, waterproof, and effective in temperatures close to cold. The “Doctor Gel” padding is subtle yet appears to mitigate incapacity due to frozen hands.

Silicone grips and reflective strips help signal, and a microfiber wipe helps you stay neat and tidy.

There is a variety of sizes available ranging from small to extra-extra-large, so you should be able to find a size to suit you. You can have the items in any colour you wish – so long as it is black!

6. Cycling cap

A helmet is a sensible option no matter the weather, but it won’t be of much assistance in keeping your head warm and dry.

A skullcap or headband will not be enough to keep the wind from hitting your head, so it would be best to invest in a high-quality cycling cap for colder weather.

The summit will block the rain from getting into your eyes while the long sides and back will keep the upper portion of your neck and ears (another body part, recall) cosy. This Castelli cap may be costly, yet given how warm it’ll make your ears, we firmly believe it’s a worthwhile buy.

This hat offers complete protection to the head and ears against the wind, making sure to keep your body temperature stable, so you won’t have to worry about getting an ice cream headache ever again.

This hat has an interior made of lightweight polyester fleecing, which covers your head to keep any splashes away from your eyes. It will also give you a look that is far sleeker than a standard skullcap.

7. Waterproof jacket

Once the cold winter weather sets in, a softshell jacket won’t be sufficient. In this situation, it is necessary to purchase a highly effective waterproof jacket.

Many jackets claim to be watertight, but in our experience, they perform more like water repellent; typically leaking from cuffs, zips or at seams.

This Sportful jacket is specifically crafted to prevent the Bora-Hansgrohe team from becoming saturated, and it comes with Gore-Tex’s well-known assurance to stay dry. Designed with speed in mind, the garment employs a special, elastic Gore-Tex material at the shoulders and arms to provide extra freedom of movement and a snug fit.

8. Overshoes

Having cold and soggy feet can turn cycling, which is known to be one of the most enjoyable experiences, into a difficult ordeal. Let us give cheer for the straightforward overshoe, that can shut out the extremely cold weather conditions.

These Dhb overshoes can be purchased at a reasonable price and consist of 3.5mm of neoprene. It is simple to maintain your feet warm in the chilliest of temperatures; additionally, its outward layer is impenetrable.

The Kevlar material has been added to the toe, heel, and bottom sections of the shoes to provide durability, which is likely to last for at least two winters’ worth of activity.

These items will probably last longer than flimsier alternatives, though when they do eventually become unusable, the cost to replace them is not outrageous. That’s fortunate since they aren’t the most attractive objects. Nevertheless, they are not totally lacking in creativity; a quality line of reflective elements provides both visibility and style.

9. Socks

Is it not true that a pair of socks is simply a pair of socks? If you are riding a bicycle for an extended period, you may find yourself exposed to the elements for the entire day.

You should seek a product made of merino wool that keeps your feet warm without trapping excessive moisture and creating a perspiration problem.

Col’s Tech Wool Cycling socks are engineered to redistribute sweat away from your feet, along with sections at the arch, heel and toes that help retain warmth. This fabric blend is comprised of 35% merino wool, 35% acrylic, 27% elastane and 3% nylon, giving it superior strength yet also boasting remarkable insulated qualities and ventilation.

10. Softshell jacket

The uppermost tiers of something typically come in two variations. When temperatures dip too low for a regular winter jacket, a high-grade softshell jacket will give a little added warmth while also conferring protection from the wind and some rain.

The construction of the race fit features double-layer ‘Alpha’ technology created by Castelli to optimize breathability by separating the insulation and protection layers.

When going out and buying a winter coat, you should make sure to check for specific features like zipped pockets, reflective accents, and vibrant colours that are easily seen.

11. Eyewear

There is a lot of dirt on the roadways, so you’ll be safeguarding your eyes from any potential spraying, debris, or salt.

A pair of glasses to suit any lighting conditions, no matter if it’s dark in the winter or bright in the summer. These Oakley glasses offer vast peripheral vision, plus photochromic technology that adjusts with the lighting. They exude style as well as offer desirable features.

Oakley states that their sunglasses weigh 22 grams and that the lenses have materials that protect against impact, which is very important when biking during the winter months when the risk of getting into an accident is higher.

From courses like street racing to hill biking and even activities which involve more than one sport, the uninterrupted lens design and fashionable angles make them useful all year round.

Cycling Equipment

12. Lights

During the winter, you get less daylight, so if you have to commute during those hours, it is important to make sure you have good-quality lights to be seen in low-light conditions. Front lights can be classified into two groups: lighting that illuminates the surrounding area for other people to see and lighting that enables you to have improved visibility.

Essentially what this is saying is that you should invest in two lights: one to be seen by other vehicles, and one to help you view your surroundings in the dark.

In cycling, especially in the city, you want to deck yourself out with lights during the winter.

In the winter, it’s difficult to get noticed, so you need to make an effort to grab the driver’s attention ASAP. If a car is going 35 mph, it can drive from one end of a football field to the other almost instantaneously. Therefore, the more clearly the driver can see, the more advantageous it is.

Lights with a luminescence of less than 200 are mainly used to help cars spot you. For instance, an 80-lumen rear light can make you visible from a distance of about two miles.

The human eye is naturally attracted to movement, so a sudden flash of light will draw someone’s focus. Serfas produces the Vulcan 350 rear lamp, which shines with a brightness of 350 lumens and has multiple blinking modes for increased visibility.

The Light and Motion 700 is an excellent option, boasting 700 lumens and a variety of flashing settings. These lights can be plugged in when you arrive at your job, so you can power them up.

If you are riding a mountain bike, it is recommended to use lights that have a lumens rating of 1,000 and over to more clearly discern logs, rocks, and other objects on the track.

Slide collisions between cyclists and motorists happen frequently, and the motorist typically acknowledges the bike rider too late. Putting lights on the slides makes it easier to be spotted.

13. Winter-specific bike

Using an older bicycle as a spare can be a favourable option, but having a specialised winter bike is preferable. Many road bicycles cannot accommodate fenders or thicker tires due to their design. If you are driving an extensive distance, you absolutely need to have these.

GRX components are tailored to the specific needs of gravel terrain and constructed to sustain heavy use.

Bicycles with lower-end components tend to be more lightweight and less expensive to replace than those with higher-end components such as Ultegra and Dura-Ace. Many gravel bikes are also set up with a single chainring in the front and a 10-51T, twelve-speed cassette in the back.

The bigger the rear sprockets are, the simpler it is to pedal up the incline. Bigger gears in the rear diminish the spin, or the number of rotations the wheel should make when pedalling.

The number of teeth on both the front and rear sprockets is utilized to gauge the size of the sprockets. The typical road cassette will have either a 28 or 32-tooth gear on the rear, whereas gravel 1x cassettes will have a 51-tooth gear, giving the rider the ability to have lower gear for tackling steep hills.

A gravel bike’s design is tailored to less rapid rides, therefore making it more dependable. The bicycles feature a less tight head angle, providing you with greater stability in difficult or icy conditions.

Moreover, some gravel bicycles come with broader handlebars along with flared ends that contribute to better management. Many gravel bikes have been produced to be used for adventure touring. As such, there are a variety of eyelets for the installation of mounts, fenders, racks, and panniers.

Along with owning a drop-bar bike to ride during the winter, a hybrid dual sport is also a viable option. A hybrid bike is a combination of features from a road bike and a mountain bike. The hybrid bike combines the swiftness of a competitive street bike and the ease and vertical riding capability of a mountain bike.

Hybrid dual sports are ideal because they offer a combination of features, such as a suspension fork with approximately 63 millimetres of travel, which is ideal for riding on gravel trails but can be locked out for riding on pavement.

Two outstanding bicycles are the Cannondale CX and the Scott Sub Cross Lady. These bikes boast a front suspension to cushion the effects of a bumpy road ride, as well as allowing you to add a studded tire to increase grip on snow and ice.

It is possible for a lot of gravel bikes to be compatible with both 700c and 650b wheels. Tires measuring 40mm will fit onto 700c wheels, while 650b wheels can accommodate close to 50mm tires.

In especially challenging conditions, you can reduce the air pressure in your tires to have an increased grip. You can also attach tires with spikes to your bicycle to gain a grip on the snow. If you take a break from biking for a few weeks or months over the winter, your glutes won’t be accustomed to being on a firm saddle!

Advice: The cold season is the ideal time to take your primary bicycle to your local bike store to be serviced and improved. At this point in the year, the stores are not as packed, leaving you with plenty of time to get your cycle in working order again. This includes a comprehensive tune-up to take away all the dust, exchange cables, housings, and chains, as well as scrubbing away any dirt left in the hardware.


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