View Full Version : Hands warm? How 'bout those feets?

11-08-2010, 08:25 AM
Okay... Last week's topic was Moose Mitts and keeping your hands warm. This week concentrates on your feet! In some ways they're harder to keep warm than your hands because they're always in motion and it isn't easy to do something like Moose Mitts for them.

I just purchased a new set of winter riding boots. My old Lake boots died after almost 15 seasons. I re-upped with Lake and got a set of their MXZ302 boots. I use them on my mountain bike. They're great in the snow because they actually have a decent hiking boot sole on them. I like the BOA lacing, though I know some folks don't like that so much. They find it hard to find a balance between tight enough to hold the heel down and loose enough to allow for comfort and circulation. That isn't a problem for me.

Here's the link to Lake's site: http://www.veltecsportsusa.com/default.aspx?tabid=558&itemno=MXZ302_11&clr=BK

I haven't found a local shop that carries these in stock. I've found places that will order them for me. Talk with Lake or someone who owns them ahead of time to get the sizing right. I'm right in between a 45 and 45 Wide in Sidi shoes and the Lake size 46 fit me perfectly with room for socks.

I like them enough that I just found an older set of the 301 series road shoes (same warmth, but no hiking boot sole... they have a sole for road cleats) on sale and ordered them. They won't work in the snow or ice, but they're great for cold weather road rides.

There are many other winter boots on the market, but I haven't found anything that I like more than the lakes. Pearl Izumi, Louis Garneau, Sidi and Northwave all make good winter boots. If you have a brand that fits your feet, you might give them a try.

All of those boots seem really expensive though... You may not ride enough in the winter to warrant getting one pair, much less 2 (actually 4 for me since I have rain boots too).

There are less expensive alternatives. Neoprene shoe covers do well down into the 30's. If you have small feet, you can even go the extra step of getting some HUGE wool socks and putting them over your cycling shoes. A friend of mine does a combination of the two. She puts on wool socks, then neoprene covers over them. Works great for her.

When it gets REALLY cold, it is very hard to get a cycling shoe that works well. When it is way below zero, I tend to put flat pedals on and get out the snow boots. Trust me... they work very well.

What works for you when it is cold?

Next topic will be SOCKS!!!!

Happy riding.

11-09-2010, 10:27 AM
Good write-up Pete! I use my standard SIDI summer MTB shoes with merino wool ski socks, Pearl Izumi Caliente toe covers and a Sugoi shoe cover. Works well for me until it gets real real cold. Then I throw chemical warmers and that typically does the trick.

11-09-2010, 10:52 AM
Chemical warmers ROCK!!! Just remember that moisture shuts them off... so you gotta kind of plan for that. I've had all-day rides where my feet overheated with the warmers in there, sweated, then shut off the warmers and I got a little chilly. I don't know exactly how to plan for that... except to be aware that it can happen.

Pre Moose Mitts, I used some HUGE running gloves with the pocket that turns them into mittens. I put a chemical hand warmer in the mitten pocket. Worked like a charm.