Two days ago, there was nothing but frozen, brown grass and bare pavement. Yesterday, we got a dusting of snow and I went out for a short, intense ride in a nearby park and then spent the rest of the day doing other things.
But that was mere prelude. Today, winter returned with a vengeance. A high temperature of 24 degrees at 8am, winds in the low teens and gusting higher, and at least two more inches of new snow. All of these things add up to one thing: a long ride on the fat-bike.
We’d originally intended to ride the Badger State Trail, but the wind direction convinced us that riding a loop of the Capital City Trail was marginally more intelligent than riding south with a tailwind on the BST and back into a building headwind. This proved a good decision. In the time we were out riding, the temperature dropped about 15 degrees, the wind increased into the high teens, gusting into the mid-20s, which puts the wind chill well below zero. As predicted.
But even in these conditions–though they make for hard pedaling in some stretches of the trail–it was a great thing to be out riding in the snow, making fresh tracks, busting through drifts, cruising when it wasn’t hard and hammering when it was. And we can look forward to more of the same–if look forward is even the right way to think about it. More snow (6-10 inches in the next five days), colder temperatures (including some subzero lows and highs), and wind (with windchills well below zero).
In these conditions, every ride becomes something of an adventure–even my 6-7 mile commute. And that’s just the way we like it.