13 December 2013

On Ice

Remove the "b" from "bicycle" and you have...Well, OK, it's a misspelling.  But you're not far from "icicle".

I thought about that during the last couple of days.  We had a dusting of snow on Monday, and a bit more on Tuesday.  In between, we had some rain and sleet, and the temperature dropped.

That meant ice patches en route to and from work. Encountering an ice puddle is not so bad:  The best way to ride across one is to keep moving ahead in a straight line and don't brake unless you absolutely must.  

The real hazard, in urban cycling, is those patches of jagged ice:  You know, where it looks like the Ho Chi Minh trail glazed over.  That, I think, is where you are in the most danger of slipping and falling, especially if your tire brushes against one of the "ridges".  Then, it's like riding parallel to the railroad track in order to cross it.  

At least I didn't have to ride after dark. Even on a well-lit street and with a good headlight, it's harder to see those ice patches.

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