January and February tend to provide a lot of sleet, rain, snow, ice, and bone chilling weather here in York County, Pennsylvania. For sure, not ideal conditions for biking...but, I made a commitment to opt outside as much as possible in 2019...and I'm sticking with it. Conditions and time have kept me from heading to the local county parks to mountain bike.  Likewise, gravel and rock salt have kept me (for the most part) off of my road bike.  Still, as I came to realize last winter, I have plenty of OPTIONS to get out and do what I love to do.

I took advantage of  the extra couple hours of daylight and rode my mountain bike along and around the train tracks in Manchester, PA after school let out early in anticipation of a pending snow storm. -- January 19, 2019

An Arctic blast hit the northeast late last month.  The first "snow day" I had this school year wasn't for snow...it was for the downright frigid temperatures.  Temps so cold that I had to balance my desire to be outside and ride my bike with the fact that being outside too long was just plain dangerous.  My go-to ride for a day like this is the northern section of the York County Heritage Rail Trail... providing a combination of proximity, scenery, and the the option to turn around and end the ride at any point.  Three miles into the ride I decided to head back. Even with all my cold weather gear...I began to feel the extreme cold on my skin.  A six mile ride on that particular day was perfectly fine by me.

Riding (in below zero wind chills) the Heritage Rail Trail along the Codorus Creek in York County. -- January 21, 2019

Completely covered in cold weather gear for my short, but exhilarating, ride on the Heritage Rail Trail. -- January 21, 2019

My Stumpjumper resting on a cascade of ice. -- January 21, 2019

Riding snow covered roads in Manchester, Pennsylvania. -- February 2, 2019

Making first tracks in a field below Orndorff Elementary School in Manchester, Pennsylvania. -- February 2, 2019

I took advantage of my second snow day of this school year with a ride around and above the town of Manchester, PA with my next door neighbor, Mike Alicea. -- February 11, 2019

I've also discovered that...when conditions aren't optimal for traditional road or mountain biking...I can create little adventures in my own my neighborhood.  By zipping in and out of the parks, fields, and alley ways near my house, I can piece together a 10ish mile snow ride.  In years past, these would have been the days that I just didn't ride.  Perhaps I would have gone running (those days are behind me now)...but I more than likely wouldn't have been riding.  So far this year, I unfortunately haven't yet made it up to Rocky Ridge, over to Michaux, or to any of the other places I typically mountain bike...but I am out there doing my thing.  I have been riding...a little here...a little there.  As much as I possibly can.

The snow and cold haven't kept me completely off of my road bike.  Last Saturday, I took an amazing ride into York City to pick up some things at York's Central Market.  I took the round-about-way home (riding through a tunnel under Interstate 83)...making for a super fun ride. -- February 9, 2019

Life is a journey...not a destination.

David A. Raymond -- February 12, 2019

I guess you could say that my wife and I have also been hiking here...hiking there...  We've gotten out for at least one hike every weekend this year.  It's becoming a nice habit.  David and Robin Raymond in Michaux State Forest. -- February 10, 2019

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Here are the GARMIN maps and data from rides and hikes featured in this post.  #OptOutside

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