Winter Cycling Guide w/ Portland Sustainability Office

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Katie Tims

Jan 13, 2023, 12:10:51 PM1/13/23
to, Dave Cohen, mouzkyller,, Winston Lumpkins, Troy Moon,
Hi all!

I am here with an update in regards to the Winter Cycling Guide that the City of Portland Sustainability Office might publish.

I want to first thank all of those who helped create and edit the language and pictures that went into this document. I want to especially thank Jenny Ibsen (a local artist - for volunteering her time to create some of the beautiful graphics seen in the guide. I encourage you to check out her shop and support a local artist that is equally passionate about winter biking. 

Attached is the first version of the Guide.

Please let me know if you have any changes you would like to see! I have limited capacity to make major changes to this guide right now but would be happy to make annual revisions in the future.

Thank you all for your help in this process. We are always excited to celebrate sustainable and safe transportation, and hopefully, we are able to publish this as a resource on our website and share it with the biking community.

THank you again,

Katie Tims (she/her)
Sustainability Office, City of Portland

Living and working in City of Portland, which is located in the unceded territory of the Aucocisco Band of the Wabanaki, which also includes the Abenaki, Maliseet, Mi’kmaq, Passamaquoddy, and Penobscot people.

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winter bike guide (1).pdf

John Brooking

Jan 14, 2023, 3:00:36 PM1/14/23
to Katie Tims, Dave Cohen, mouzkyller,, Winston Lumpkins, Troy Moon,
This is great, Katie!

  1. Page 2, "Lights": Typo in the 3rd paragraph: "generator hub on the front whee."
  2. Page 3, "Fenders": "If you store your bike in a warm place (like a basement) the cold snow and ice is more likely to adhere to your fenders than if you store it in a cold place (like an unheated garage)." I'm not sure why this would be the case. I would think the opposite would be true, though of course in a warm place you'll need to provide for melt. More explanation?
  3. I think the "Riding Techniques" section on page 3 could be tightened up a bit with more editing. I feel like it says the same things over and over with slightly different wording.

John Brooking
Cyclist, Cycling Educator, Technologist

Zack Barowitz

Jan 14, 2023, 3:58:27 PM1/14/23
to, Katie Tims, Dave Cohen, mouzkyller, Winston Lumpkins, Troy Moon,
My feedbacks:
  • Generally wordy/can be tightened up (but that takes a lot of time, so maybe for next year's version)
  • Change "Winter Biking" to "Winter Cycling" (for pedants "biking/bikers" refers to motorcycles)
  • Consider finding a more normal looking bike for the graphics
  • At the workshop on winter cycling the topic of salty slush on electric bike parts came up. Maybe save that for next year's guide as well.
  • I heard the ice on warm fenders thing from Tucker who used to work at the Gear Hub. I don't know the physics of it but I think it is the same as why people are advised not to lick cold lampposts, roughly.

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Zack Barowitz

Jan 16, 2023, 9:55:38 PM1/16/23
to, Katie Tims, Dave Cohen, mouzkyller, Winston Lumpkins, Troy Moon,
I know I said that the guide would benefit from fewer words, not more; but I thought of a couple more points:
  • In terms of keeping the bike upright––Expect turns and even lane shifts to be much longer and slower. As such it is helpful to "pick a line" that minimizes both obstacles (bumpy ice, snow piles, etc.) and sharp turns.
  • About the bike––Winter bikes need a lot more care and tlc, frequent cleanings chain lubings will help keep your winter bike on the road. If you bring it to a shop for a tune-up it is best to do so in the fall as bike shops get busy in the spring with fair weather friends.
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