Winter is already knocking on the door, and you're worried about freezing on the saddle? That's perfectly normal, but there's always a way out. Not long ago, mountain biking in the middle of winter meant only two things: either sweating profusely in an ugly big jacket, or freezing to death.
Fortunately, the situation has evolved a lot. And it is now possible to adjust your clothing while saving money. Between clothing and accessories, zoom in on the practical and essential uniform to continue to enjoy mountain biking in the middle of winter and no longer suffer from the cold!
Mountain biking in cold weather: the principle of 3 layers
Never forget that winters are cold! You must protect yourself from humidity and low temperatures at the same time, whether inside, with sweat, or outside with rain or wind. That's why it's very important to use appropriate underwear and clothing that keep you warm and insulated. But not only! It is also important to ensure that the fabrics are breathable and allow cold sweat to pass through.
Indeed, it is highly recommended to dress in layers in order to cover up well and avoid getting too cold. Specifically, this means wearing three layers of warm, comfortable and breathable clothing. These three layers must be able to eliminate the humidity from your body, while preventing you from getting cold. In fact, sweat is one of the worst enemies of winter cycling. The fact is that you can freeze if too much sweat concentrates near your skin. The first layer is used to create a microclimate and release the humidity emitted by sweat. It is much more preferable to opt for a short or long-sleeved thermal T-shirt.
For the second layer, its main role is to retain body heat and prevent loss of body temperature. If it is not too cold, you have the choice between the usual summer jersey, that is to say a long-sleeved thermal T-shirt, or else a special winter jersey. As for the third layer, it consists of protecting yourself from the cold, external humidity and wind. For this, you can use a raincoat or windbreaker, a special coat or even a vest.
What top to wear for mountain biking in winter?
This is where your personal preferences for cycling come into play. Some people love to pile on the layers, while others stick to a technical jacket over their bodysuit. Indeed, the technical jacket is probably the most expensive cycling outfit on the market, allowing you to fight the cold. It should be a little more ample and adjustable on the wrists and waist. Its hood must be detachable and the neck must be completely covered.
You could opt for Gore-Tex jackets that are perfectly breathable and waterproof. But the catch is that they cost an arm and a leg.
Otherwise, you could simply adopt a softshell jacket with several layers inside. Moreover, you could take off the jacket if you feel the temperature rise.
Eye Accessories for a winter mountain bike hike
Do you want to play the part of a motocross rider? Choose glasses with transparent lenses. But it is important to always keep a small wipe with you to clean them at certain times.
However, if the weather deteriorates, you will probably have to buy tear-offs. These are a plastic film that will always ensure clear vision.
Protecting the skull and neck for mountain biking in winter
Under your helmet, you could wear a small, short and light beanie. Or choose a neck warmer that you could also use as a hood after your cycling tour. The latter completely covers the head, only revealing the eyes for optimal protection.
Finally, you could adopt beautiful thermal headbands if you are not afraid of the 80's style! Very practical and light, they serve to protect the ears and head from the cold and bad weather during rides.
How to protect your hands from the cold?
It is essential to opt for the best winter gloves with insulating parts on the back of the hands. In addition, they provide you with more ease and control when driving. A neoprene glove will keep you warm when it's cold or when it's raining.
And if it's freezing, make sure to wear a pair of mittens. Make sure to never forget this detail: make sure your gloves can easily slip under the sleeves of your jacket.
Well cover your legs when you want to mountain bike in winter
Certainly, the legs are the part of the body that moves the most when you drive. And that is exactly why you must absolutely adapt your clothing to your ability to withstand the cold.
Do not hesitate to use thermal tights to get less cold when the temperature drops suddenly. And even, you could wear one under your classic shorts. You'll see that you'll look like a ninja with it!
Warm feet during a winter mountain bike hike
Your feet are the part of your body most sensitive to cold. The blood circulation inside is quite complex. When you pedal, your toes are slightly exploited. In any case, you do not ask them to move.
It's time to adopt a pair of winter shoes. Most of them are very expensive, but include many options so that your feet can stay warm. Make sure to avoid models with a neoprene cover or a waterproof sock when the terrain becomes muddy. These shoes are extremely difficult to wash.
And of course, you could perfectly go back to flat pedals to better enjoy the winter season. They provide a little grip in the mud.
Otherwise, if you are the type of person who loves low temperatures, use a ¾ tights. There are models that are tightened at the knees. Make sure to always wear a loose shorts in addition to not wet your buttocks. And if it's pouring, you should opt for waterproof pants.