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Winter jackets, mudguards, lights, trainers and more products to help you survive the winter

[This article was last updated on January 9, 2018]

Winter is a tough time for cyclists. Short days and long nights limit riding time in the sun, the cold drains energy faster and bad weather can make it dangerous on the roads. It's bad for the road bike too, all that rain and dirt. To help you and your bike survive the winter, we've picked a selection of products to help you survive the winter months.

Winter cycling: 16 tips to keep you motivated

Muc-Off Bio Chain Doc — £14.99

biodegradable-chain-cleaning-machine.jpg

biodegradable-chain-cleaning-machine.jpg

All the road grime and dirt from riding in the winter can quickly lead to a squeaky and rusty chain, but doing serious bike maintenance after a ride when you can’t feel your hands isn’t much to look forward to. This Muc-Off Bio Chain Doc makes the task of cleaning a chain really quick and easy, so you can keep your drivetrain in good working condition without the mess and hassle.

Decathlon Orao Arenberg Cycling Sunglasses — £3.99

decathlon ora.jpg

decathlon ora.jpg

Keeping road spray, especially if riding in a group, dirt, mud and the rain out of your eyes with a pair of cycling glasses is preferable to trying to see through mud-filled squinted eyes. These Decathlon Orao glasses have a wraparound design and the clear lens is ideal for low-light and night-time riding.

Tacx Vortex Smart Trainer — £359.99

Tacx Vortex Smart.jpg

Tacx Vortex Smart.jpg

There is a way to avoid manky weather, and that’s to do your cycling indoors. A turbo trainer, as they’re called, is a simple frame the rear wheel of a bicycle with the tyre resting against a roller, turning your road bike into a stationary trainer. This Tacx Vortex Smart trainer can be controlled by a computer or phone app such as Zwift or TrainerRoad to vary the resistance so you can train to specific power levels and not waste any training time.

Vittoria Corsa G+ tyres — £32.39

Vittoria Corsa tyres.jpg

Vittoria Corsa tyres.jpg

With the addition of state-of-the-art graphene, Italian tyre manufacturer Vittoria reckons its brands new Corsa tyres provide a massive boost in both puncture resistance and wet weather grip compared to its previous tyres. The Corsa G+ rivals long-standing favourite the Continental GP4000S II for both rolling resistance and puncture resistance and has excellent wet-weather grip..

Read our first look

Exposure Lights Axis LED light — £139.99

Exposure Axis.jpg

Exposure Axis.jpg

Many cyclists have no choice but to do the majority of winter riding in the dark, so investing in a decent front light should be a priority. The British designed and manufactured Exposure Axis LED light may be small and light (99g), but it blasts out 1000 lumens, enough to light a dark country ride. It can be mounted to the handlebar or helmet and the battery can last for 24 hours in the lowest setting. 

Your guide to the best front lights for cycling + beam comparison engine 

Sufferfest system — from $9.99

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sufferfest.png

If you’re planning on cycling indoors to avoid the cold, rain and dark (who can blame you) then a really good training aid is the popular Sufferfest system. It's an app offering a range of structured training session with videos using actual professional road racing footage to make you feel you're part of the action. 

DeFeet Woolie Boolie 2 Merino socks — £12.58

DeFeet WoolieBoolie Merino socks 2

DeFeet WoolieBoolie Merino socks 2

Nothing says winter like cold toes, and a pair of woolly socks will definitely make your ride a little more enjoyable. These Woolie Boolie socks are thicker than most cycling socks, made from luxuriously soft merino wool, and long enough to avoid an ankle gap below your tights. They're best used with roomy shoes. Try and stuff them into shoes that fit snugly over thin summer socks and you'll just reduce the circulation in your feet, making things worse.

- Read our review

Crud RoadRacer Mudguard Set — £25.99

Crud Roadracer mk3.jpg

Crud Roadracer mk3.jpg

Adding a set of mudguards to a bike, and these simple plastic Crud RoadRacer mudguards can be fitted to most road race bikes, provides a decent barrier against road spray, and makes cycling on wet roads much more tolerable than without mudguards.

Rapha Pro Team Winter Hat — £27

Rapha Pro Team Winter hat.jpeg

Rapha Pro Team Winter hat.jpeg

Keep your ears warm and your head toasty with a hat worn underneath your helmet. This Rapha Pro Team Winter Hat uses a soft shell fabric to provide insulation for your brain and it’s got a DWR treatment so it’ll be good in the rain too.

Proviz Reflect 360 Jacket — £79.99

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reflect360_jacket_split_to_show_effect_1.jpg

To help you stand out on the commute or evening training ride is this fully reflective Proviz Reflect 360 jacket. The magic is in the material, which is completely coated with a reflective treatment so the whole lot lights up when a car's headlight is focused on it.

- Review: Proviz Reflect 360 Jacket  

Kool Stop Dura 2 brake blocks — £9.99

Kool-stop Dura Dual.jpg

Kool-stop Dura Dual.jpg

Your brakes can take a bit of a hammering in the winter, with the rims caked in mud, grit and salty water, and brake blocks can deteriorate very rapidly. It’s important to keep a close eye on them, and replace them before they get too worn down. These Kool Stop Dura 2 Dual Compound brake blocks are a good replacement, with solid stopping power in all conditions.

- Read our review

Lezyne Lever Patch Kit — £5.63

Lezyne lever patch kit.jpg

Lezyne lever patch kit.jpg

It’s a fact of life, you’re much more likely to get a puncture in the winter. There’s more debris on the road, especially after it has rained, with mud and stones from the edge of the road washed into your path. And water acts as a really good lubricant for sharp objects to slice through bicycle tyres. This Lezyne Lever Patch Kit has everything you need to fix a flat and it’s all contained in a neat metal case, along with two tyre levers, and is small enough to be stashed in a jacket pocket, saddle bag or backpack.

Read our review 

Condor Fratello Disc — £849.99 (frameset)

condor fratello disc.jpeg

condor fratello disc.jpeg

Okay, this is a jolly expensive product recommendation to help you survive the winter, but a dedicated winter bike like this Condor Fratello Disc, equipped with disc brakes, mudguards and wide tyres, is ideal for battling through the winter. It’s comfortable and smooth, making it ideal for long steady rides, the proper full-length mudguards will keep you drier than without them, and the beefier tyres will better resist flatting. And the disc brakes reduce maintenance and provide a bit more stopping power. 

- Read our review 

Any products not on this list that you recommend?

David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.

11 comments

Avatar
demiurgik [6 posts] 2 years ago
3 likes

I have to say the Crud guards are an absolute must for me, super easy to fit, without the need for eyelets.

you can also get them for under £20  http://bit.ly/1SllgJH

Avatar
mylesrants [404 posts] 2 years ago
2 likes

New Gatorskin tyres every November and no punctures in 4 winters!

Avatar
David Arthur @d... [864 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes

Airzound wrote:

No mention of footwear or gloves which is a bit slack .....................

 

Here you go Airzound, http://road.cc/content/buyers-guide/166196-best-cycling-clothing-keep-yo...

Avatar
PhillBrown [224 posts] 2 years ago
2 likes
Airzound wrote:

No mention of footwear or gloves which is a bit slack .....................

Who needs shoes and gloves? It's only winter... Rule #5 my friend, Rule #5.

Avatar
davenportmb [76 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes

A frameset isn't going to do you many favours on its own. The cheapest built Fratello you can get is £1,303. I want one so badly!

Avatar
thesaladdays [125 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes
mylesrants wrote:

New Gatorskin tyres every November and no punctures in 4 winters!

Just purchased and installed a set for the first time last weekend and very impressed so far, plus the smooth rolling, nice  smiley

Avatar
CharlesMagne [91 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes
thesaladdays wrote:
mylesrants wrote:

New Gatorskin tyres every November and no punctures in 4 winters!

Just purchased and installed a set for the first time last weekend and very impressed so far, plus the smooth rolling, nice  smiley

 

I used to love Gators but my last two falls have been on them which makes for nervous riding. Moving on to some 25c slightly knobbly ones to boost morale, courtesy of Road.cc's winter tyre guide.

Avatar
CharlesMagne [91 posts] 2 years ago
1 like
demiurgik wrote:

I have to say the Crud guards are an absolute must for me, super easy to fit, without the need for eyelets.

you can also get them for under £20  http://bit.ly/1SllgJH

They were good, but the little contact pads which are held on to the frame with elastic bands have permanently scuffed my Ti frame and carbon fork. Less than impressed.

Instead, I purchased a Genesis Equilibrium Disc frameset this year and have built it up with some Curana CLite full mudguards (they're pretty sexy as mudguards go), and life is now sweet. I still remember my first 30 mile commute in the rain and getting in with dry feet angry. Really nice frameset too, got it with a headset for £250. Disc brakes are awesome too.

Avatar
Thelma Viaduct [83 posts] 6 months ago
1 like

32mm tubeless Panaracer Gravelkings, job jobbed.

Avatar
Stratman [118 posts] 6 months ago
0 likes

Another indoor based thing - a Google Chromecast and YouTube (with a tv in front of the trainer of course).  Lots of videos of cycle routes or tours to inspire summer destinations.

Avatar
ktache [824 posts] 6 months ago
0 likes

I feel I must recomend the Exposure Axis, for me a perfect helmet light.  The tight beam is a little too narrow for the bars, but perfect on the helmet.