I’ve always liked to imagine myself as a pretty bad ass cyclist, seeing how I’ve commuted through Minnesota winters and done 100 mile races and that sort of thing…and while I love the Dutch and their cycling culture I can’t say I ever thought of them as the hard men and women of commuting…until I visited Amsterdam in January.

Hard me after finishing the Lutsen 99er

While Minneapolis is generally a bit colder than Amsterdam in the winter, on my visit to Amsterdam this past week the temps were hovering around 25-35 American degrees, which is either 72 or -26 Celsius depending on how you convert it…I’ll have to figure that whole thing out before we move so I can tell how cold I am…

Of course when it is 25 degrees in Minneapolis the hard core bikers like me don’t leave their bikes in the garage, instead we break out our winter biking kit. I have a FAT bike and my 45Nrth gloves and Wolvhammer boots, some awesome fleece lined SWRVE pants and of course some uber chic ski goggles that are sure to impress my fellow Greenway commuters…

not me

So what sort of special kit do Amsterdammers wear when the temps go sub freezing…see for yourself:

Needless to say my hard man cycling ego was more than a little dented seeing ladies in skirts and high heels and a lot of people who did not even bother with a hat or gloves on a morning commute when my iPhone told me if “felt like” 26 wimpy American degrees…

My mid winter visit to the Mecca of bike commuting confirmed once and for all that Amsterdam is the spiritual home of Rakish Riders everywhere…

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