One of our WomenMTB lady riders shares what she does for her snow bike rides. Danita Ritter started snow biking in 2015, but has logged plenty of hours in all types of weather. We asked her what it is she uses for her rides to help you get ideas in staying warm, but not too warm, while riding in the snow.
HANDS & FEET
These are going to be the first to get cold so the most important, as far as clothing goes. I like to have a pair of light liner gloves as well as a warm winter glove and I always keep hand and toe warmers in my pack in case I get cold. I also use barmitts on colder days so that I can just wear a liner glove and keep my hands warm.
As for my feet I wear a pair of thick wool socks and waterproof hiking boots or snowshoe boots. You can also use snow boots but sometimes those can be a bit big and bulky. If you choose to clip in I recommend wearing shoe covers to protect your feet from getting wet. When riding the groomed trails this isn't as much of a concern as to riding single track.
Start with a light base layer , then a micro-fleece pullover, vest or light jacket then last a windproof/waterproof jacket.
I prefer riding in a light weight down jacket that can easily be stored in my pack. Layering is very important because once you start riding you will heat up quickly and may need to shed a layer.
I prefer a pair of tights layered with cycling shorts and a pair of windproof/waterproof pants. You can use ski pants as well but they can tend to be bulky at the bottom. Your legs usually don't get too cold since they are working the most.
I use a thin skull cap or buff on chilly days or just a thin band to cover my ears. I also like to use a buff around my neck so that I can pull it up around my mouth and cheeks if needed.
On nice days I prefer my sunglasses because they are less bulky. If it is snowing out I like goggles because they don't fog up as much and easier to see through.
I tend to use a water bottle vs. bladder in the winter because the hose tends to freeze up easily on the bladders. I always take a pack to store extra clothing and snacks.
A rule of thumb that I use before I start my ride is that if I am warm at my car before I start riding I am dressed too warm.