Monday, January 25, 2010

Winter Cycling Spiked tyres

Winter cycling or at least cycling in snow even with a helmet is something that we don't want to do. Both of us have fallen with or from our bicycles when cycling in summer following moments of inattention without major injury except to our pride. However being balanced on a two wheeled device when the wheels can easily slip on a greasy icy surface strikes us as being on the daft side. We don't do it. We walk. Old-fashioned but it works.
There is a technological cure for sideways slipping tyres which we have not invested in. You can buy spiked tyres. Schwalbe for example produce Marathon Winter tyres with tungsten carbide spikes. An acquaintance of ours who commutes about 10 km daily summer and winter on a forest track speaks highly of them. There is another piece of high tech equipment that is often ignored in Viernheim - the glove. I was out shovelling snow this morning at temperatures of about -1°C when a young lad cycled past with one bare hand clutching the handlebars and the other tucked up his jacket sleeve. I doubt if he could have used both brakes quickly in case of an emergency and the bare hand must have been seriously cold. As one says in Lancashire, "No sense, no feeling".

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