Your typical riding season

Forums Mountain Bike Forum Your typical riding season

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    • #126185

      For those of you that live in an area with a cold season, when do you call it quits? Being new to the sport, when should I call it quicks in regards to being respectful to the trails?

    • #126186

      Since I’ve been riding, I’ve lived in Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, North Dakota, Ohio, and Virginia, all places that have a winter, some of which are extreme.

      I’ve never let cold make me call it quits.

      Icy trails, on the other hand have led to a couple very bad spills, so I tend to avoid them. Sometimes warm fronts dry out trails between snows even in notoriously cold climates, so I’ve generally ridden year round, everyplace but North Dakota. If I had had a fat bike there, I would have ridden year round there as well as there was never ice since it stayed cold enough to not melt snow which then refreezes into ice. Trails were nicely packed powder in the winter.

      I remember riding regularly in Montana with ambient temps in the single digits and windchills well below zero (Fahrenheit).

    • #126187

      I would guess this varies a lot depending on weather and soil type.

      In western Virginia I ride 10-11 months out of the year. If it is wet we go to higher rockier trails. I don’t ride in deep snow or ice. I catch up on my chores when it is above 95°F, or below 30°F. Spring thaw in February usually sucks as does the leafy hell we have right now. 😆

    • #126188
      "John Fisch" wrote

      I remember riding regularly in Montana with ambient temps in the single digits and windchills well below zero (Fahrenheit).

      I live in the same area John lived in when he was here. For the past two winters (the only two I’ve been here for), I’ve been able to ride every month.

      Get some decent layers, especially a good base layer and a good wind stopper and keep riding. Find out what works at what temp and enjoy being one of those crazy guys out riding when most people are sitting in doors!

    • #126189

      Now that I live in South Texas, I ride all year long. I can handle the heat of the summer if I get out on the trails early enough. Plus, there is only a slight chance of freezing so I don’t have to worry about damaging the trails. The only weather that stops me is rain.

    • #126190

      Now the evenings are closing in, night rides in the wet and cold are what it’s all about in the uk, often with a group of riders. As far as respecting the trails are concerned, speak to the horses and dirt bikes, a lot of the bridleways are totally trashed by them.

    • #126191

      I used to call it quits in November. But now I have a fat bike and lights so I don’t stop unless the trails are pure mud.

    • #126192

      I only slow down when it’s mud season in here in Vermont in spring and fall. Fat biking is a game changer for year round fun on a bike. I just don’t like mud that much.

    • #126193

      I am starting to ride all year long now. Just learn to layer up like some other people has said and you will be fine. I thought it was crazy at first but I find it easier to bike when it is cold now. There is less traffic on the trails, and you don’t have to worry about sweating as much.

    • #126194

      As long as it’s not raining, I’ll ride in the cold. When it gets down to 30 or lower, I begin to deal with numb feet and hands by about the 10-12 mile mark. Other than that, It’s still enjoyable.

      Due to the frequency of rain in the winter here, there’s a lot of trails that are not able to be ridden due to the fact that they never dry out but luckily there’s a couple networks that are leaf-covered and/or rocky.

      Life’s too short to allow winter to stop you from doing something you enjoy.

    • #126195

      I live in East Tennessee… I will ride on days in the up 30’s. February gets a little tough, but other than that I will bike nearly year round. The ground can stay pretty wet during the winter, so there are trails I won’t ride. I try to ride trails that get some sun. I avoid creek crossings and water in general, no need to take a spill and find your self soaked to the bone w/ the possibility of hypothermia.

      Layer up, stay hydrated, and after the first mile you will become acclimated.

      I usually wear some sort of wool sock blend, close fitting fleece pants (the kind fisherman will wear under their waders), and then some sort of polartec top with a light weight T or riding jersey. If it is breezy cold, I will wear a light win breaker to keep the cold from slicing through my top. Long fingered gloves are nice to have as well.

    • #126196

      I have been very fortunate to have the opportunity to ride year round for the the last 10 years or so. I have a pretty high tolerance for weather and if it isnt snowing hard or pouring rain I will pedal…doesnt help me much as I am still a clown on the bike! 😄

    • #126197

      Hi there John, and welcome to the forum!

      Can I ask where you live and ride? For me, it’s not so much the cold that foiling my riding plans, but long bouts of wet weather and lack of sun keeping a lot of the local trails mucky.

      Today, for instance, we’ve got sleet and rain with overcast conditions forecasted for the remainder of the week, ensuring it doesn’t dry up any time soon.

    • #126198

      In central Wisconsin the trail will close on it’s own if they don’t want you to ride on it. Usually it’s closed in the spring till things dry up a little and the animals have there young. Then it’s open till fall around hunting season, because the trails are on public land and want riders to be safe and give the hunters a fair opportunity to use the land. It reopens in the winter for fat bikes, but I’ve never got into that so I don’t know much about that.

    • #126199

      I live just outside Seattle. My riding season never really comes to a complete stop. In the fall it rains alot, and it is harder to get myself on the bike while it is raining. When I do, it is usually just fine, although I have to really slow it down, wet roots are really slippery! Temperature is rarely a problem, I generate enough heat to stay warm down to just below freezing. Below freezing is nice because the mud is all frozen solid! Most of the winter is around here is mid forties, which requires starting with a coat. I typically end up shedding it at some point in the ride. What really keeps me off the trails in the winter though is Skiing. Once the days get longer in the spring I have been known to ski the first half of the day, drive home and head out for a bike ride. This winter was terrible for snow and I only got 10 days in, but the warmer weather meant a lot more riding. Strava shows 35 rides so far this year, average of 3 per week. I dont always manage to get in 3 a week, I do try to get in at least one a week. I do have an advantage over some in that I live close enough to a nice network of trails that I can ride to them, dont need to pack the bike onto the car and can go for a ride pretty quickly when I have a spare hour or two. The downside to that ends up being that I rarely ride anywhere else.

    • #126200

      Live in Central Ohio. I mainly ride fall-winter-early spring. The perfect day for riding for me is either:

      1. 55 degrees; partly cloudy; light wind – cool enough not to be drenched in sweat, to wear shorts, and 3 layers on top. Less people out so I get more room to move (and wipe out). I can go my own speed…also prefer to camp in this time of year….
      2. anytime there is snow on the ground!!

      I will ride in the summer to "scratch the itch", and get to work, but I generally hate the heat. I will usually ride MTB in the evening in the summer.

    • #126201

      I can ride all year round because of the increasingly good weather here in washington. i also love to get muddy 😃

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