Sports FAQ
Home / Bike Maintenance

Winter tires

Catrin2011-02-11 16:24:36 +0000 #1
Have started to think about what to do for my tires this winter. If I was willing to ride last winter when I could barely go around the block without falling over, then I will certainly ride this winter when the weather permits

I thought I had asked this here before but couldn't find it if I did - forgive me if this is a repeat question.

I wouldn't go out with snow/ice covering the road unless I had a Pugsly - but that isn't in my future. However, I will go out when the roads are mostly clear/dry - but of course in the winter it can still be a little slippery in the shade. I won't get snow tires because I won't ride in the snow and pavement are hard on them.

Currently I have Continental Travel Contacts - 26 x 1.5. I LOVE these tires - which is why I haven't really turned the search up for blue tires... They are tough and it is obvious they will last me for quite a few miles. I know that Continental does have "winter" tires, but I am unsure what is meant by that - am assuming they are not studded but perhaps they are...

Would I gain anything by going to a tire with a little more tread or a little wider? Has anyone used the Continental "winter" tires? Obviously anytime ice becomes part of the equation there are no guarantees, just looking for my best bet in handling a surprise patch of ice or packed snow that might turn up.

My bike will take up to 2.5 inch wide tires, but of course that would be far too wide for road use. I tried to bring up the page for the Conti Winter II tire but the page isn't loading for some odd reason.

Melalvai2011-02-11 16:29:55 +0000 #2
My experience has been that if the roads are good enough to drive, they are good enough to bike. Once the plows & salt/sand spreaders have been through, it's usually fine. I like biking when there is visible snow & ice because the motorists are much more cautious and polite.

I don't have special tires for winter. If I lived further north I might but in Missouri the snow & ice doesn't stay around for long.

Good luck, you're going to love winter cycling! You are so hard-core!
Catrin2011-02-11 17:14:36 +0000 #3

Originally Posted by Melalvai

You are so hard-core!

I don't know about hard-core - hard-headed and stubborn - yep

I tend to ride in the country - just don't yet care for urban riding. So I figure the roads out there will be less taken-care of, though I could be wrong. Last winter I was still practicing in parking lots, and later, in my favorite park. I didn't hit the actual road until March.

Thanks for your experience, it is helpful to know. I was unsure if I was over-thinking, as I am sometimes known to do.
Thorn2011-02-11 16:38:21 +0000 #4
If the roads are wet and slushy....just my usual commuter tires. That covers a lot of winter riding.

But, ice and snow can be a problem for me. When either are in the mix (under snow there can always be ice), I use studded tires. We put studded tires on a couple of old beater hybrids last winter. Best thing I ever did.

Cycling can bring out the kid in you, but never so much as riding fresh snow. There is something about riding when intellectually you think you shouldn't and having a great time doing it, that makes you feel like a 10 year old beating the system.

Also, our bike trail gets sort of plowed in the winter, but what it really means is that it ices up. The studded tires let me ride across the ice without any slippage.
zoom-zoom2011-02-11 17:24:20 +0000 #5
My next bike is gonna be a cyclocross bike. I am really going to miss riding outdoors this Winter, but my bike can't take anything wider or higher-profile than skinny road tires. I have dreams of throwing on some studded tires and being kinda unstoppable. DH has dreams of a Salsa Mukluk.
Atlas2011-02-11 17:50:42 +0000 #6

Originally Posted by zoom-zoom

DH has dreams of a Salsa Mukluk.

I want one really bad. My partner has a pugsley and I love it too, but I want to see what the Salsa is all about.



Other posts in this category