Winter Riding Resources

Interested in riding in the winter, but not sure where to start?

You love riding your bike – in spring and summer, and maybe fall, but you are not quite sure about winter riding? You’d like to learn more about how to prepare yourself and your bike for riding in colder conditions?


GUIDE TO WINTER CYCLING SAFETY

GUIDE TO WINTER CYCLING SAFETYDownload the booklet here >>

TIPS FOR WINTER CYCLING

Prepare Yourself – Body and Mind
You never know what the conditions might be until you actually throw your legs over the saddle. Dress with layers and wear a waterproof and/or windproof outer shell to keep you dry and warm. Wear gloves to protect your hands from cold and precipitation. Wear warm socks to keep feet and toes insulated and put on warm, waterproof shoes to combat any cold air or moisture. Remember that mornings and evenings are significantly colder than mid-days.⁠⁠ Always map out the safest route, and have alternatives if conditions prove/turn challenging. Test ride routes to build confidence. Weekends are best, rather than during rush hour or when you’re in a time crunch. Leave plenty of time to reach your destination.⁠ Have a backup plan, just in case.

Prepare Your Bike and Accessories
Depending on conditions, some equipment is easier to prepare for winter than others. Bikes can be modified to better handle snow and ice.
Lower air pressure in your tires to increase traction in cold, snow and ice. Lowering air pressure allows the tires to contact more of the surface. Check the recommended pressure range on the sidewall of your tire and inflate at the lower end. Go big to get home. You can use wider tires with more aggressive tread (or even studded tires).
Block the spray. A front fender prevents water and muck from flying into your face (both annoying and dangerous); a rear fender keeps your behind clean and dry (no rooster tail!).
Check your components regularly to ensure they’re in good working order, especially your brakes and pads. Visit your local bike shop if you are not sure. Most of the shops are offering service specials during the winter.

Be Visible – Day & Night
For the darker days in winter, install a front (white) light and a rear (red) light on your bike. Put reflectors on your bike, backpack and/or your clothing. Be visible.
Remember to be smart when it comes to taking on severe conditions. There may be weather that is simply too much to take on, and getting a lift or using public transit is a better option. DriveBC is a good place to find road conditions and weather previews.

Clean Your Bike and Keep It Lubricated
Keeping your chain, cassette, derailleurs and chainwheels clean and lubricated is the single most important thing you can do to keep your bike running smoothly and efficiently over the winter. You should also keep the frame clean; Wiping it down is something you should do after a longer ride, before you put your bike away, or if you’re using your bike every day, once a week.
When you’re not using your bike, keep it under cover. Exposure to rain will quickly wash lubricant off the chain and cause it to rust and will degrade performance of other components too.

Have a Backup Plan; Play It Smart
Now that you’re all good to roll and ready to keep active transportation alive through the winter, be smart when it comes to taking on severe conditions. There may be weather that is simply too much to take on, and getting a lift or using public transit is a better option. DriveBC is a good place to find road condition and weather previews.


BC Ministry of Transportation’s Tips for Winter Riding

We love how BC Transportation and Infrastructure informs us how to prepare our minds, bodies, and equipment for winter riding in this article: CLICK HERE

Refreshed and ready to start a day at the ministry’s Kamloops office after a good ride! Daily exercise… check.

2022 Winter Cycling Preparedness Webinar Recordings

👉 WINTER CYCLING IN METRO VANCOUVER / LOWER MAINLAND:
__Friday, February 4, 2022 @12pm PST
__WATCH THE RECORDING HERE >>
__Put on by GoByBike BC Society and HUB Cycling

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👉 WINTER CYCLING IN NORTHERN BC:
__Monday, February 7, 2022 @7pm PST
__WATCH THE RECORDING HERE >>
__Put on by GoByBike BC Society and Smithers Bikes
__Hosted by Sheena Miller, Smithers Bikes Coordinator and Chrsitine Bruce, Cycling enthusiast and host of Totally Spoke’d podcast

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👉 WINTER CYCLING IN THE KOOTENAYS:
__Wednesday, February 2, 2022 @12pm PST/1pm MT
__WATCH THE RECORDING HERE >>
__Put on by GoByBike BC Society, Cranbrook Sunrise Rotary Club, and Summit 107 FM
__Hosted by Dennis Walker, Morning show host who bicycle commutes year-round, (107.5 2DAY-FM – The East Kootenays Playlist); and Lisa Barnes, Max’s Place (Owner) and Wildhorse Cycling Club (President)

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👉 WINTER CYCLING IN THOMPSON OKANAGAN:
__Wednesday, February 2, 2022 @7pm PST
__WATCH THE RECORDING HERE >>
__Put on by GoByBike BC Society, Kelowna Area Cycling Coalition, and Capital Bike
__Hosted by Kelowna and Area Cycling Coalition and Capital Bike

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👉 WINTER CYCLING IN GREATER VICTORIA AND THE CRD:
__Friday, February 4, 2022 @12pm PST
__WATCH THE RECORDING HERE >>
__Put on by GoByBike BC Society and Capital Bike
__Hosted by Capital Bike


2021 Fall & Winter Webinar Recordings

The 2021 Winter Cycling Preparedness Webinar was presented by Capital Bike. Grab a bite and a hot beverage, and learn from the experts!


FALL & WINTER CYCLING: In preparation for the 2021 Fall GoByBike Weeks from September 27 to October 10, 2021, and in collaboration with HUB Cycling participants learned about outfitting their bikes and themselves for fall and winter riding, advanced cycling safety, cold-weather care for their bike, and route planning considerations.


ICBC Road Safety Tips for all Road Users: We all have a role to play in sharing the road responsibly, check out ICBC’s tips for cyclists and drivers in this article: CLICK HERE.