5 Tips for Planning a Winter Ride

But a good partner can be hard to find, especially during the winter. If you're riding alone, you need to be even more prepared. Make sure you have a map, a phone, money, a raincoat and all the tools you'll need to make a roadside repair. You won't have anyone to depend on, so make sure you'll be able to get out of a jam if you need to. Getting stuck in the freezing rain when you've punctured twice in the winter is a lot bigger deal than it is during the summer.

Check the Weather Forecasts

Before you head out, make sure you look at a detailed weather forecast. This doesn't mean just checking for rain or snow—it's a good idea to look at wind direction too.

If possible, ride your route into the wind first and save the tailwind for the ride home. Heading into the wind after you've been riding for a few hours will not only challenge your fitness, it'll also make you colder because of the sweat you've accumulated on your clothing.

More: 4 Tips to Stay Warm on the Bike

If showers are forecast, check a weather tracker to determine what direction the storm is moving. You might be able to miss the rain all together if you time it right.

Take a Break

If you're going on a long ride, treat yourself to a break at a cafe midway. This will keep you motivated during the first half of your ride, and it's a good way to fill up without having to carry extra food or drink. A caf? will also provide a much-needed break from the elements. Once you're warm and toasty, you'll be ready to conquer the last half of your ride.

More: 8 Tips to Prepare Your Bike for Winter

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