While most of us retire our bikes for the winter, there are a few brave ones who don’t mind a little ice and double-digit negatives and gladly take their motorcycles out for wintry rides. Some of these polar bears on wheels share in the delight (read: the nightmare) of riding out in the cold on video. One of those brave winter warriors is YouTuber Winter Rider—an appropriate channel name if you ask me, seeing how he posts videos about, well, winter riding. In his latest video, he heads out on his motorcycle during a particularly tenacious visit of the Polar Vortex. Why? Because why not.
Western Canada has been dealing with some of the coldest temperatures on Earth with the windchill factor reaching as low as -60 in some areas. Nothing a true Canadian can’t handle, right? Winter Rider decided to take his very sexy-sounding Yamaha FZ-09 to work during the cold snap. Just your average Canadian commute.
In the video, he explains how the thermometer indicates it’s -28°C (so -18°F) with a windchill closer to -30 (-22 in Uncle Sam’s units). He heads out on the bike early in the morning, before sunrise (when the temperatures get at their coldest) and takes it out on the highway (where it gets even colder because of the speed and the wind).
He says that he’s curious to find out what riding at highway speeds in the cold feels like. I’m curious to know why chickens have evolved out of flying, not about what riding in minus Hell freezes over weather feels like, but to each their own. In his own words, “it’s not too bad.” Obviously, the next logical step is to pop his visor open, just to see. The dude deserves some serious cred, he’s literally reviewing subpolar winter riding for us.
In the comments, he expresses that he needs “better mitts”, which suggests that he’s not using heated gloves for his wintry adventures. He doesn’t mention the gear he uses so it’s hard to tell whether he has any heating component at all. He also tells one of the commenters that his FZ is fitted with a set of Anlas WinterGrip tires—something to keep in mind if you plan to follow in his footsteps and attempt a winter ride.
While he faces the harshness of the Canadian winter out in Alberta, I get to enjoy the ride from the comfort of my home, sipping on hot coffee and for that, I am thankful. Better him than me. Godspeed, Winter Rider, this fellow Canadian salutes you.