This week was cold. Not polar vortex cold but feels like -5°C cold. That’s my cold limit. I made the decision not to ride this winter if it got under 0. But I also wanted to get over 100 commutes for the year and that isn’t possible without at least trying to guts it out in the winter.I’d had a couple of failed longer rides at the beginning of the week to get some km into my 100km/week goal so was going to have to get in at least one day of commuting if I was going to make a dent in it.
But I had committments after work meaning that I just couldn’t do the full commute so Wednesday, Thursday and Friday so I drove about 2/3 of the way and cycled in the rest of the way. That way I wouldn’t have to pay parking fees at work, get a couple of rides in each day AND meet my after work obligations.
I started off in the frost of Wednesday, the 29er tyres crunching over the gravelled surface of the sports association car park. Hitting the river trail, I recognised the ice as my adversary on the unpaved surface and slowed down. Safety first, speed in summer.
The sound of distant fireworks echoed in my covered ears every time I hit the fine icy gravel. I arrived glowing with cold digits. It was just as cold going back in the evening, enough to drain my phone battery from 62% to a halt. I spent the evening at the cricket club AGM trying to warm it so that I could log the ride.
Thursday was supposed to be less cold but it didn’t feel like it. Maybe it was because it was just as cold. There were no distant fireworks, just sharing the road with cars. I battled back into the biting nor’easter on the quickest route to make it back for master#1’s options evening at school.
Last night it snowed. It was cold enough to settle on untreated roads but not freeze it. Once I hit the cycle tracks, I crunched through virgin snow. It didn’t stick to the tyres to slow me down. I think that I have finally found a type of snow that I like and if I had more time, I would have ridden all the cycle tracks, everywhere. No one at work could or would believe that I rode in the snow. I tried explaining that it was the least dangerous ride in terms of avoiding a self inflicted fall all week but all I got was vacant looks & “you are mad to cycle in THIS! Promise me that you will be careful this evening…”. “I’m not Danny McAskill”, I replied (cue more vacant looks).
The way back wasn’t warmer, it was just less cold. The snow had melted and the water didn’t freeze. All those small rides have added up and I’m only 8km off 100km for the week.
35 rides in 32 days. Normal service has resumed.