Cyclists bundle up for the Coldest Day of the Year Ride

Coldest Day of the Year Ride draws hundreds

Story and photos by Sonya Allin

Around the time that ice starts to appear on the sidewalks, I typically retire my bicycle for the season.  I’m not alone; apparently, only 10 percent of Toronto cyclists currently ride all year round.  This year’s Coldest Day of The Year bike ride, however, has made me seriously rethink my cold weather transportation strategy.

The new Manager of Cycling Infrastructure & Programs at the City of Toronto, Jacqueline Gulati.

It was a beautiful day to be on a bike.  As many as 200 cyclists took part in the ride which went from Trinity Bellwoods Park, down the recently installed (and deeply appreciated) Adelaide Street bike lanes, to Metro Hall on Wellington.  Jared Kolb, the director of Cycle Toronto, kicked off the ride by describing recent cycling “wins” like the Richmond/Adelaide pilot project. Speeches supporting Toronto’s cycling culture and growing infrastructure were also made by Jacqueline Gulati (the new Manager of Cycling Infrastructure & Programs at the City of Toronto) and Ward 20 Councillor Joe Cressy.

Riders concluded the ride at Metro Hall.

Jared Kolb has described the ride as a “celebration of winter cycling”. The riders that were there were indeed entirely equipped to celebrate, some with “fatbikes” or custom-built wheels and all with perfectly warm winter cycling gear.  These are riders who won’t be deterred by a little bit of snow! For the rest of this season, I’ll try to be more like them myself … and keep my bike out of its winter retirement.

Rider Rob Niddery, and his custom wheels … ready for a winter ride.

Related on the dandyBLOG:

Review of Frostbike: New book about winter cycling from Calgary

Yvonne Bambrick on her new book, The Urban Cycling Survival Guide

The City's plan for winter clearance of bike lanes

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