26 February 2011

Until Warmer Days

Our van has been voluntarily parked for over 3 days. We've had 3-7" of snow and daytime temps between 25°F and 34°F.  To my surprise, we've managed to do ~25mi of errands and commuting by foot or bike during that time.  We haven't avoided any trips; getting to school and work on time and even picking up a 40# bag of dogfood when we ran out.  While this isn't a big deal for many local-living families, even I am impressed to keep this streak alive in the coldest, nastiest part of winter.

Perhaps the best part about this little bout of undriving is that the kids see it as completely normal.  Tula's been riding in the Madsen since she was one, and the rain cover is now on it's second winter.  Gwen has adapted to riding the Xtracycle deck in it's many configurations and she expects to see a bike parked outside of the school everyday when I pick her up.

That bucket cover has been key to winter riding with the kids, because of windchills.  Once the temp falls below freezing, one can subtract another degree for each mph of wind.  I stay warm trying to keep a cargobike at 10mph, but the kids just turn into popsicles without the windbreak. This was the result of a fast descent in an uncovered bucket:

Keep everyone safe and warm until spring, but remember, that doesn't always mean you have to take the car!

24 February 2011

Snow Ride

We walked to school this morning in a light flurry, after playing in the snow for a while before the late start. By afternoon the roads were bare, but a heavy snow shower that rolled in just as we were heading out made the ride back to the school a memorable one. According to Gwen, as she checked out our fat-tire tracks from the snapdeck: "This is the best day ever."