Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Danes, alright? I learned it by watching the Danes!

It's snowing outside as I type this. I am riding my bike to work tomorrow. Am I crazy?

Half a million Copenhagenites couldn't be wrong:

No doubt a number of these Danes are riding on Nokian tires to keep the bike from slipping out from underneath their bodies.

I figure I could do the same:

I put 14 miles on them today. I have to say they aren't great at cruising along at 17mph on dry pavement. The bike doesn't feel as stable as I am accustomed to with [insert dry pavement-specific tire here]. The bike's responsiveness becomes sluggish. They don't like it when I lean the bike on dry pavement. They make a ridiculous noise not unlike a rusty chain on dry pavement.

I'm pretty sure the combination of carbide steel and bare concrete produces a number of high pitched whines, as I managed to scare dogs while riding with them on dry pavement.

If you ride studded Nokain tires on dry pavement, prepare to be disappointed.

However, a section of Lincoln's MoPac trail between 33rd and 35th streets was a 30 foot long skating rink on an incline. On any of the other tires I have at my disposal I'd probably be whacked out on [insert painkiller med here] and drooling on whatever dressing holds a collarbone in place.

When I get more confidence in my ability to ride on ice, I hope to resemble this Camaro, except with two wheels and a much quieter exhaust note:


  1. FYI... Copenhagen is in Denmark. Dutch people are from the Netherlands.

  2. Well, to be fair, there might be some Dutch people living in Copenhagen... They're mostly Danes, though :-)

    Dutch people also cycle in the snow.

  3. Also neither the Dutch or the Danes need to bother with winter tyres, because their cycle paths get swept and gritted regularly...

  4. Glad to see you got some studded tires - I know what Nebraska winters are like as I grew up in Omaha. Even here in Chicago, a flat, bike-friendly city, we use studded bike tires (I have them on my Omafiets) because 1). Winter temperatures often fluctuate making for a nasty icy/snow mixture 2). We don't have separate plowed cycle tracks only ice-filled bike lanes. I'm guessing Lincoln is similar. We're working to make Chicago more Amsterdam-like (Dutch) or Copenhagen-y (Danish), but until then we'll just have to deal.

    Hey - have you ever been to Henderson or Holland Nebraska? Do you think those Dutch towns have cycle tracks? :-)

  5. I stand corrected, it is Denmark, not Holland. I'll fix the title in a bit.

    Ms.Ding: Lincoln has over 100 miles of in-town bike paths, they're former railroad beds. They completed the Antelope Valley creek project last year to create a main trail near NU/downtown (not to mention removing a floodplain near downtown). It cuts under several busy streets. Thanks to that and the N27th street bridge (also completed last year), I ride a grand total of 4 blocks on quiet residential streets from my house to my workplace. The rest of my 7 mile commute is on quiet bike paths in parks.

    We've got a map:

  6. I have to correct myself: The city completed the antelope valley trail this year (the drainage ditch was completed last year), the N27th bridge was finished last year.