It seems as though we are back to normal January Winnipeg weather. The deep freeze. It’s seems that the wind chill always hovers around -33 C no matter what the temperature is.

The roads really haven’t gotten much better since yesterday. The bus/bike lanes are in rough shape as the snow really seems to accumulate in between parked cars, and and when the cars leave, there is a treacherous black ice and snow debacle that you have to ride through.

I did my best to stay out of those lanes today. It’s a good thing I did. The chain broke on me today, just as I was standing to pedal. My foot slipped, and I fell right to the pavement. It felt like a pretty good rolling dismount in my opinion, but I’m sure bystanders wouldn’t agree. I grabbed my bike and scrambled off the road. I tore a small hole in my jacket but did worse to my pride, otherwise I was fine.

I surprised myself and managed to get the chain back together in less than five minutes with my Crank Brothers M17. I do love that chain tool/spoke wrench on this thing. It works like a charm every time. It truly is another story to fix a chain while winter cycling. Time is crucial during any repair made in the cold. You move with Pitt crew precision, until your hands freeze.

I’ve been taking the Simpson Sears bike to work lately. I guess it was just an old chain. I really have no idea how old it could really be. How man kilometers had it driven this antique? Anyhow, from now on I will be gentle with that bike. At least until a new drive train comes my way.

I’ve had a hand full of chains break during my life time, and it’s always scary. Sometimes the chain justs breaks during a shift, or when your coasting, but the worst time for it to snap is when your hammering in traffic. Pain is going to be on the menu. Breaking a chain is like loosing a pedal. You go crashing to the ground, or worse, the top tube. Then you pray that motorists don’t run you over.

I was lucky to get to work on time, and even luckier that the chain didn’t break at a more dangerous part of my commute. I’m going to try not to think about that right now…