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Angela Chang, Store Ambassador at Liv Vancouver

Vancouver, British Columbia

My name is Angela. I’m a wife, a mom, a partner at a national accounting firm, and a bike fanatic. I live in beautiful Vancouver, BC. Winter riding in Vancouver is less so about the snow and more about the rain and mud. I have a 5-km short commute each way during the week and all the fun gravel rides on weekends.

Why do you love it?

To me, winter riding is just as much fun as summer riding if I can regulate my temperature properly. I love winter riding because the roads and trails are much quieter. Some trails get very busy in the summer, but in the winter, you feel like you have the mountain to yourself.

There’s also the extra fun factor of mud. There is nothing better than coming out of the trails with mud all over your legs and feet.

How to be prepared

Dress my extremities—I wear a pair of rain mittens over my riding gloves to add an extra layer of waterproof protection over my hands. For gravel riding, I wear my waterproof boots. For road riding, I put on two layers of booties. Anything to keep my hands and feet dry and warm is key.

Snacks—pack tasty snacks that I look forward to eating ensure that I actually make the effort to ingest the calories.

Liquids—sometimes I’ll bring a small thermos of coffee or hot chocolate because I’m more likely to hydrate if the liquid is warm and tasty.

Layering—dress in layers that can be peeled off or added back on quickly. Don’t wait till you’re very sweaty to peel off layers.

Storage—have something to hold the layers peeled off, or back-up layers, and an extra pair of dry gloves. Either a handlebar bag, or a frame bag, or a hip pack with loops for holding extra gear.

Hacks—a pair of latex gloves and a pair of plastic bags. They take up very little room and weight but can be a lifesaver when your hands and feet are soaking wet from the Westcoast rain. Wear the latex gloves under your cycling gloves and wrap your feet in the plastic bags before putting your shoes on. They will keep you much drier and warmer.

Lights—even if I think I’ll make it home before dark, I put on my lights. Grey skies and rain make bright lights necessary even before nightfall.

My essentials

  • Merino wool base layer, socks, buff
  • Fleece lined tights
  • Waterproof boots (mine are Northwave)
  • Waterproof mittens to go over my regular riding gloves
  • Charcoal hand warmer packets
  • Breathable rain jacket

Recovery time!

Here are my go-to's recovery snacks after a good day spent outside!

  • A slice of homemade sourdough bread, toasted, and topped with peanut butter, honey, flaked sea salt
  • Mexican hot chocolate made with oat milk, or oat milk latte
  • Big bowl of homemade ramen noodles with tofu and mushrooms

Learn more!

More the indoor type of winter rider? Alyssa Seely, Liv Triathlete shares 5 Ways to Make Indoor Training Exciting!