It's been a great winter here in DC, its mostly high 30's but the last few days it's low 20's and in at night a little windy?

  • @Batman - I removed the blatant Astroturfing referral to an unnamed service which time and time again has been held to task for their complete lack of morals. Apart from that the question is actually interesting and could be of use.
    – Rider_X
    Jan 20, 2016 at 20:13
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    @Batman - I suggest you remove your comment (where you named the service that shall not be named) so they get zero pings from search engines.
    – Rider_X
    Jan 20, 2016 at 20:17
  • am sorry about the reference
    – nolawi
    Jan 20, 2016 at 20:28
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    Too cold depends on the person and bike. Plenty of people ride well below zero fahrenheit (common in the Midwest US, Canada, Alaska, etc.). @Rider_X - done.
    – Batman
    Jan 20, 2016 at 20:46
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    @SuspendedUser I'll grant you that's an objective answer, but I think we'll find it's the one and only objective answer. All others will be opinion and anecdote. Jan 20, 2016 at 21:46

1 Answer 1


Anything colder than -55F (-48C) is difficult to mechanically maintain. Most lubrication products on the market for cold weather are rated to -60F (-51C). Which means that at -50F (-45C) they become almost unrideable and at -55F (-48C) pretty much unrideable.

I am aware of products rated for colder than that, but they have issues that when stored at room temperature, they will turn liquid and drain out of whatever compartment they are attempting to lubricate.

Personally, I have several zones:

Anything above 70F (21C): too hot to ride comfortably

70F (21C) to -10F (-23C): perfect riding weather

-10F (-23C) to -30F (-34C): possible to ride comfortably with proper prep on appropriate bicycle

-30F (-34C) to -50F (-45C): not comfortable, but rideable (similar to 70F+/21C+)

below -50F (-45C): Not rideable mostly due to mechanical conditions

You may also check this quesion for answers regarding prep work for cold weather riding.

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    can't be serious -10f is not perfect riding weather. although rideable...
    – nolawi
    Jan 20, 2016 at 20:43
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    Anything above 70F is uncomfortable? Are you a snowman?
    – Nathan
    Jan 20, 2016 at 20:51
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    -10f translates to -23c. If you travel at a slow speed of 15 km/h, that will yield a wind chill of -33c. At this temperature, you can get frostbite on exposed skin in 10 to 30 minutes.
    – Kibbee
    Jan 20, 2016 at 21:12
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    Above 70F is hot? LOL......... Jan 20, 2016 at 21:25
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    +1 Above 70 is too hot, that's right. I'm not sure if I agree with your low end though... -10 is really, really cold. You might mention you live in Alaska :)
    – BSO rider
    Jan 20, 2016 at 23:10

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