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Welp, it looks like dreaded Polar Vortex is upon us again. What is your "go-to" gear to keep warm when riding in frigid temps? Inquiring minds want to know!

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Today: Not anything too special, switched from normal thin layer thermal bottoms to the mid thick ones, two layers of thinrunning gloves with my Meteor Mitts outer layer for wind protection. I arrived at work a toasty cyclist.

Thermo Soles I understand that though they worked well for me others did not get similar results. I use them in slightly oversize MTB shoes and then put thermal shoe covers on over that.  I only use them for commuting and I don't stand on my pedals in that situation so maybe any rougher use might cause them to fail. I charge the night before and then while I'm at work before the ride home. (24 mile round trip commute)

Specialized winter riding gloves. Scott goggles. Rain pants over long thermal biking/jogging tights. Novara rain jacket over the thermal Pear Izumi LS jersey over thermal sports ware under garment. Studded tires keeps me upright. Neoprene (type) Balaclava and a rain cover over the helmet. The rain ware blocks the wind.

Truthfully though, if it gets below 15f I don't ride to work.

These do not let me down. Super cheap at every Army Surplus store everywhere, made of wool so they work wet or dry. Get just the inserts, not the leather shell. On the worst days last year, I doubled up on these with the wool 5-finger inserts underneath and felt fine?


Thanks for posting a pic David, What a great winter gear find!

I love the winter gear ideas. I am also a big fan of the ski goggles. Makes it easier to see when it's snowing.

David of the North (David606xx) said:

These do not let me down. Super cheap at every Army Surplus store everywhere, made of wool so they work wet or dry. Get just the inserts, not the leather shell. On the worst days last year, I doubled up on these with the wool 5-finger inserts underneath and felt fine?

When it is as cold as it was this morning, I want my face covered, but I hate balaclavas.  Bern helmet with winter kit, ski goggles, and a light woven wool scarf covering neck, cheeks, and chin work for me.

Don't over dress.  Use a good base layer and, depending on the temp I will wear a ski parka or a polartec jacket that will ventilate when necessary.  I use a neck gaiter to cover the lower part of my face when needed and a winter helmet liner with ear covers.  I use hunter's mitts and add a hand warmer if needed and use toe warmers in my shoes.  The hand and toe warmers can be reused after short trips by putting them in a zip lock bag, squeezing out the air and stopping the reaction. Ski goggles can be a plus, but ski helmets get really hot and sweaty. Easy, but don't overdress.

Marc

I started keeping a "gear log" each day and it's really helped take the guess work out of how to dress for the conditions. 

I used to layer and layer 3 shirts, a sweatshirt a hoodie, scarf THEN a jacket.

My wonderful Christmas gift was Columbia base layers and a heat reflective shirt.

Doesn't work too well for wind block or just standing but once you get moving,generating body heat it's awesome. 

They also have a hat for $25 that I'm  gonna get.


On top - one long sleeve "technical" (not cotton) shirt, an old wool sweater, a thin jacket just to block the wind (with some back and armpit vents).  Although I get comments about how it cannot be enough to stay warm, it is almost overkill for me on most days.  This is especially true when I wear a backpack.  It might be a law of bicycling that he/she who wears backpack shall have a sweaty back by the end of the commute regardless of the exterior conditions.  Thin hat under the helmet. A scarf for days like today. Either two pairs of gloves (one thin drug store pair and one running pair) or ski mittens for really cold/windy/wet days.

On Bottom - running or biking shorts, running tights, running pants.  Thin wool sock under thicker wool sock (I find it useful to have at my disposal wool socks of varying thicknesses as the temp. changes).  I wear shoe-boots with 200 grams of insulation with plenty of room for said wool socks.

I have a pair of those wool Army Surplus mitten inserts with the trigger finger that David of the North uses. They were in fact super cheap. The problem I had with them is that the wind goes right through them.  I have never tried doubling them up though.  Is that the key?

Switch to wool socks and hikers, sweat pants under the jeans, and drop down a gear to pedal faster.

Fleece bala under the helmet and some goggles to keep the stinging winds from mine eyes.

Two layers on my bottom, three on my top.  Mr YAJ bought me a brighter and lighter top layer for xmas. Today, the only thing that was cold was my face at points of contact with my plastic glasses.  I think I'd better move to ski goggles so many refer to.  What type do you recommend?

I went to REI and bought whatever they had - about a medium price (I don't recall which brand). 

Here's a pic when I used them at a Cx race at Indian Lakes (it was snowing and quite cold). My face was very warm. Because of my asthma, when I race, I am more concerned with the cold than I am about being too hot. 


yaj 7.4 said:

Two layers on my bottom, three on my top.  Mr YAJ bought me a brighter and lighter top layer for xmas. Today, the only thing that was cold was my face at points of contact with my plastic glasses.  I think I'd better move to ski goggles so many refer to.  What type do you recommend?

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