Winter Wheels program helps Peterborough cyclists learn how to ride during winter

Applications open until October 14 for sixth year of B!KE program, which runs November to April

With its Winter Wheels program, B!KE: the Community Bike Shop in Peterborough helps to encourage year-round biking by overcoming weather-related barriers. (Photo courtesy of B!KE)
With its Winter Wheels program, B!KE: the Community Bike Shop in Peterborough helps to encourage year-round biking by overcoming weather-related barriers. (Photo courtesy of B!KE)

When fall arrives, many cyclists will start counting down the days they have left to ride before the snow flies and they put their bikes into storage for the winter.

But, according to B!KE: the Peterborough Community Bike Shop, it doesn’t have to be that way.

If you’re a Peterborough resident and want to learn how to ride your bike through the winter, applications are now open for the Winter Wheels program.

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Co-sponsored by B!KE and the City of Peterborough, the program provides participants with free studded winter tires and offers one-on-one and group skill sessions to help riders feel more comfortable in cold and snowy weather.

“You might think riding through cold and snow would be less than enjoyable, but almost 100 per cent of past participants said they enjoyed riding in winter and would continue to do so after the program ended,” says Jean Greig, B!KE program manager, in a media release.

This is the sixth year of the Winter Wheels program, which has helped more than 100 aspiring winter cyclists ranging in age from under 15 to over 80.

VIDEO: “Slippery Handling Skills” – B!KE: The Peterborough Community Cycling Hub

According to Greig, some participants cycle to work, others cycle for recreation or exercise, while others rely on their bike as their only means of transportation.

“The feedback we’ve gotten indicates that no matter age, gender, riding experience, or income bracket, participants are universally impressed by how easy and fun riding in winter can be,” Greig says.

If you’re interested, you have until Friday, October 14th to apply for the program at communitybikeshop.org/winterwheels.

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The program runs from November through April and is limited to 25 participants, with preference given to those who are not currently year-round riders.

Participants are asked to commit to riding at least once a week over the winter and to share their experience via social media or other means.