Holiday Buyers Guide – Cycling Winter Gear

When the temperature drops to under 40 degrees, I grab my cold weather cycling gear and cowboy up for a couple of hours on my bike. Although this off-season I’ve had to dial down my training because of a lingering injury, I’ve still got to keep warm when I’m out there. I learned the hard way about what to wear and what works best when your internal fortitude takes a punch to the nuts from Mr Freeze.

The extremities need to be covered in the cold – that’s day 1 tip from the Bjarne Riis survival camp rule book – which means hands, feet and head. I’ve read that 90% of body heat is lost through the top of the head so you need to keep that dome covered. Depending on the weather conditions that might just mean a simple cap to something a little more heavy duty.


From: Jenson USA


From: Jenson USA

For those cool, but not frigid days the Hincapie Tour LT beanie is the go to piece of clothing. If I’m feeling a bit metrosexual I use my Euro-stylish red Castelli skull cap to keep the chill off my bald spot. And when the temps head further south I reach for the Hincapie Arenberg balaclava that covers my entire head and neck leaving only my nose and eyes exposed to the elements.

I’ve made it no secret that I love the feel of Merino wool against my body – don’t judge me! Once again I reach for another Hincapie product, the Merino wool full fingered gloves. These gloves aren’t so bulky that punching a button on my Garmin isn’t an act of futility.


From: Jenson USA

Keeping the feet covered and warm are keys to a pleasant ride. One hot tip I got from my bff was to rub a bit of embrocation on the little piggies before slipping on socks. But be careful handling the big hog after having the ointment on your fingers. It could get painfully embarrassing. Once the toes are warmed up slip on a pair of booties to keep that new found warmth. Bellwether has the solution with the Stretch Aqua No Bootie. Yeah, it’s an odd name but they’re water resistant and keep the feet warm, so who really cares what they’re called?

A jacket is also a must have piece of apparel and I’m not going to lie – the good stuff is going to get expensive. However, if you’re out on a ride and the teeth start chattering, you’d sell your sister to get warm. The Hincapie Tour LT jacket will keep Mr Freeze at bay. Underneath a jacket the base layer is the cherry on top and the Craft PXC Thermal is just the piece of apparel. It’s constructed from stretchy material that hugs the body and keep you snugly warm. That’s the best kind of warm there is.


From: Jenson USA

I’m going to broach a subject that men don’t usually like to discuss – shrinkage due to extreme weather conditions. Craft has your junk covered with the Zero Extreme Gunde undergarment. The Gunde has Gore Wind Stopper material “strategically placed.” That’s marketing code for it covers your Family Jewels and keeps them from looking like a turtle’s head going back into its shell.

While we’re on the subject of keeping things below the waist warm remember at a minimum keep the knees covered on cool days and the legs when the mercury is in the 50s. The Arenburg is the iconic forest in the Queen of Classics, Paris-Roubaix. The Hincapie folks have taken that famous landmark’s name and used it for their leg/knee warmer category. The magic that keeps you warm is that they are lined with Merino wool. Mmmm…wool…


From: Jenson USA


From: Jenson USA

Arm warmers move from one of those “just in case” type of clothing to more crucial as the temps dip. My fetish for Merino wool continues with the Hincapie Merino wool arm warmers. If wool makes your skin crawl, Castelli’s Nanoflex arm warmers are a toasty alternative. The inside of the arms are lined with fleece and are water resistant.


From: Jenson USA

Finally there are times when you are done riding and just want to chill (in the metaphorical sense). Castelli has the cool factor cornered with their track jacket. It has a small Italian flag embroidered on the front to give you Euro street cred and “Castelli” splashed across the shoulder blades. Very Euro chic.


Comments are closed.