Biking is a great way to get around in the summer, but come winter a warm car sounds a lot better than a frosty saddle and bitter winds to many people.
But not everyone.
This year it appears more people are forging ahead on their bikes as temperatures dwindle. "I love it," said Ray Haas, 53, who works at University Hospitals. "I really think it's great that more people are being persistent about it."
That's what Haas has been seeing so far, and he would know. The Coralville man has been biking through the winter for the past nine years and says the bike racks are looking full these days. Area bike shops agree that more people seem to be braving the cold this season. Many people picked up the bike commuting habit as gas prices surged earlier this year and are persevering as it turns cold.
Haas bikes to his job year-round. It's an 8.5-mile round-trip commute from home, about 20 minutes. Last winter, he skipped 14 days, he said. "Temperature isn't usually a factor," he said. "On occasion, I am wondering, do I really want to do this today. But once I get going, I feel pretty invigorated, and I don't have regrets. It kick-starts my day. (Read more.)
Another timely article providing inspiration and information for cold weather bike commuting. Most important lesson offered here: Layer, don't overdress. Missing lesson: Wind protection. Make sure your jacket and pants have some windblock feature. I love fleece, but it doesn't keep you warm on a breezy ride.
For an informative and humorous site on cold weather cycling, don't miss Icebike.org.