Extreme Commuting


Inhale exhale inhale exhale inhale exhale….Red light.  Traffic traffic, cars, buses, people.  Green light and off again.  Simplicity in motion…a guy, a backpack, a mountain bike.  The life of a bicycle commuter.  No other means of transportation available…none other necessary.

Close your eyes and picture this person for a second.  What do they look like?  What kind of bike are they on?  What are they wearing?  What are the surroundings like?  How is the weather?  Take a second and picture what your idea of a bicycle commuter looks like.  Now…Imagine this person riding in minus 20F and a foot of snow.  Crazy isn’t it?  Actually, it’s more than crazy…closer to unbelievable.

This may not be reality to most of you, but it is reality to the countess people who survive on a bike during a Saskatchewan winter.  Let me tell you right now, I definitely am not one of them.  Not even close.  In fact the only time I’ve ever gotten on a bike in temperatures under 50F is….well….ummm.  Actually, I can’t remember getting on a bike in under 50F.  I do love the bike, but I just can’t quite muster the love when I’m out there freezing.

The weather right now isn’t as bad as I am trying to describe here, but the images of riders out there in these extreme conditions is still burnt deep into my memory.  When it’s that cold and nasty, I honestly do not leave my house….let alone even  think of jumping on a bike.

But I have seen the above scenario many, many times.  I’ve even seen people out there in temperatures that my wife likes to call “minus stupid”.  Yeah, I don’t even want to tell you how cold that is.  But they do it.  All geared up and on the streets.  Doing it.  I’m telling you, man….I absolutely don’t believe it.  We give a lot of great riders in the cycling world a whole bunch of deserving credit, and look up to all the amazing things they do…..But, I just gotta tip my hat to riders that get out there in the extremes.  Either because they have to, or because they are absolutely committed to the bike.  Whatever the reason, I applaud them.  It takes an incredible amount of motivation, dedication, and discipline and they’re definitely not doing it for the glory.

These are the people who come to grips with where they are living and aren’t about to let “the elements” stop them from doing anything.  Me?  Quite the contrary…remember I’m the one looking into anyway out of here and moving towards a life in the hot, hot sun.

I think the next time I’m about to get out on my bike and am thinking that it just might be a little too cold, too wet, or too anything…I’ll take a second to remember these crazy winter commuters and just get out there and ride.

Are you one of these extreme commuters?  If so, good job and respect.  Enough said.

Enjoy Your Ride


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5 Responses to “ Extreme Commuting ”

  1. Jim on August 11, 2010 at 12:15 pm

    I love it. I miss it. Minus stupid.

  2. luigithemagnificent on May 3, 2010 at 1:42 am

    I wish I had a dollar for every photo I didn’t take on my trips to japan.In some places I saw bicycle popsicles when so much snow had fallen and large numbers of bikes were covered with snow and beginning to ice up.Just waiting for their owners to arrive on the train and find their beloved steel steed to take them home.I must admit I was in fits watching people de-ice their bikes or simply giving up hope of finding them and catching buses or taxis.

  3. Trucks Guide on March 21, 2010 at 11:18 pm

    I just wanted to take a second and let you know that I’ve been savouring reading your posts over the last few weeks. I have a blog of my own, and would love to switch links with you. If you’re interested just leave me a comment on my page or send me an e-mail with your details.

  4. Hamish on March 21, 2010 at 5:41 am

    I cycle year round in Toronto, Canada. Our winter weather is pretty mild compared to Winnipeg or even Montreal. Modern clothing makes cold weather cycling much easier but the cold was still getting to my hands and I don’t like riding with mitts so I designed the BarBra TM. It is a protective cover for my handlebars. Now I can ride in comfort even at -15. http://www.barbra.ca
    As with many outdoor activities the hard part is getting out the door!

    • darrylislovingthebike on March 21, 2010 at 6:59 am

      Thanks for finding us and leaving your comments. Your invention looks great, but you are still much more brave than I am. Keep on doing the extreme riding and all the best to you on your venture. I hope I’m able to send a few sales over your way.


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Question: I am using the homebrew sugar formulations (sometimes added to green tea).  I am also trying to wean myself off 1/2 dose adrenalean “lip tonic delivery system” (biorhythm brand- caffeine, hoodia g, synephrine, yohimbe) capsule for energy.

My question is other than juice, can you suggest modifications in lieu of table sugar for energy and hydration.


Both raw/organic honey or agave can work great in the homebrew (substitute in the same quantities for the sugar, or to taste), but you do have to shake well in order to make sure they don’t settle out.  Have you tried either of these?  Also, make sure to use at least the minimum amount of salt recommended in the homebrew as the temps rise, you need the sodium replacement if you’re sweating.

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