Photo: #BikeWinter Is Back On
By Stephen Gossett in News on Mar 14, 2017 6:48PM
Bob Matter / Twitter
Following the first snowfall to actually register some accumulation in nearly three months, winter road warriors hit the streets on Tuesday morning to brave less-than-ideal conditions. We came across several of those hearty souls on the roads and in the #bikechi timeline, but none made our hearts sing like the photo of Bob Matter, paralegal at Freeman Kevenides Law Firm, a prominent bicycle crash and injury firm in Chicago.
As the evening commute is shaping up to be another snow-packed one, Matter, a veteran winter cyclist, was kind enough to offer share some of his most trusted tips on how to stop worrying and love the slop.
"One of the things I discovered years ago that makes a quantum-leap difference are ski goggles," Matter said. "It's like sitting in the front seat of a car with the heat on." Despite some accumulation noticeable in the photo, the goggles are huge helper in terms of increasing visibility, Matter said. The yellow lens goes a long way toward cutting down glare—which can be a major pain with sun bouncing off the bright white snow. Throw a balaclava underneath, a scarf below and you're more or less airtight, he said.
As for apparel basics, follow the layered winter-outfit trio: a wicking layer, an insulation layer, and wind barrier. An insulated jacket, long underwear and wind- and waterproof gloves are highly recommended, he said.
As for the actual riding, Matter is a studded-tire evangelist. "They really help more in ice, but when you have a really big snow like this, there can be a lot of slipping and sliding," Matter said. Lower the pressure your tires a bit and ride slowly, without making sudden darts, and you'll notice a world of difference, he said.