Biking in a winter wonderland

cycling in the snow

After yesterday’s pounding of snow along the north Front Range in Colorado, I’m surprised to find only a single photo of a guy riding his bike in Denver.

Perhaps coincidentally, or perhaps not, the top selling item last week is this Schwalbe Marathon studded bicycle tire, available in 700×35 “road” size, and 26×1.75 for non-29er mountain bikes. Schwalbe uses the same hard tungsten carbide used in Nokian studded tires.

If $75 and up for commuter tires is a bit steep for you, Kenda Klondike studded tires are currently (as of this writing) available for about half that price. Kenda used to use steel (non-tungsten) studs that were good for about two seasons of hard use. Kenda’s current generation of studded tires use “carbide-tipped polymer” studs. I think this sounds like an improvement, but I have no experience with this style of studs.

Stud count makes a difference, too. The Schwalbe Marathon 396 tires have over 200 studs, while the Kenda Klonkikes have only 100.

If you’re not sure about studded tires, buy a single tire and mount it to the front wheel. If you have a spare front wheel, this also allows a quick swap for snowy vs dry days.

I find one more recent news photo of biking in the snow. This rider probably has more to worry about than slipping on ice with his bike.

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