12 degrees F this morning, bright Minnesota winter sunshine, packed snow on the roads, so I took off on the unicycle for the quiet Stillwater cemetery. I figured the roads would be plowed but still have some packed snow and ruts, so I could get used to the Stout tire and get my balance on snow. I found myself watching very carefully for ice and perhaps being a bit too tentative. Some of the roads were twin wheeltracks, and that made for some tough riding since there wasn't much room for wheel wobble or slideouts. I did two laps around the cemetery, which was enough for one day. I had way more get-offs than usual, and perhaps because I wore knee protection, none were dramatic...just walk-offs. If I didn't have knee protection then perhaps I would have fallen. You know how it is.
I haven't ridden in a week though so I had to constantly tell myself to be aggressive when going over lumps of packed snow, and try to power through some of the obstacles. Great to get outside, and the snow was more tiring than I expected.
On the way home I took 4th street, which was bare pavement, so easy riding. And I wanted to ride past the Bikery and have those espresso-drinking, scone-eating (hmmm sounds good) lycra-wearing two wheel riders see a unicyclist out in the snow mixing it up. But there was only a kid with a yappy dog out front, so I couldn't show off. Just as well.
No revelations from this ride, just a matter of getting used to riding in packed snow with knobby tires. Tiring, a bit like riding on loose dirt, and I'm glad I didn't slip on ice.