With the weather beginning to turn there's certain things you can adopt into your riding style and kit to help you ride comfortably through the autumn and into the winter months - here are our top five tips for riding in autumn:
1. Light it up
Although you may be riding in the daytime visibility can quickly be reduced, especially if you are riding when the weather's changeable ot if you commute regularly.
Add a front and rear light to your bike, even if you don't turn them on every ride it's better to have the option should a raincloud suddenly appear and give you cause to need them.
2. Shell out
Shell jackets are perfect peices of cycling clothing for the autumn months when it's not cold enough for woolen jerseys and cycling jackets, but you are still likely to get caught in the rain.
The beauty of the shell jacket is that they are thin and light enough to fold down into a jersey pocket but will still provent you from getting soaked through tot he skin if you get caught ina rain shower. Always worth having one of these in your jersey pocket in autumn.
Mudguards will not only help save the jersey or jacket you ride in from getting splattered with mucky wateer on wet roads, it will also prevent the guy riding behind you from getting a faceful of mucky water too. Most Scott bikes and Cannondale bikes will take mudguards, but there are plenty of clip on mudguards you can use if your bike doesn't have eyelets on the frame.
Mudguards are an accessory that are well worth investment, given the soggy autumn weather we often have in the UK where the roads may be wet even if it doesn't rain on yoru ride. Preventing too much water from getting on you and the components will help them to last longer too.
4. Leaf Lookout
With the falling of leaves comes a hazard which many cyclists may fail to adjust to - wet leaves on the road. Whilst they may not be a problem on main roads, on country lanes they can cause you to lose your traction when climbing or even worse - lose control when braking.
To avoid these becoming an issue try to ride in the middle of the lane where safe to do so and take time to extend your braking distance so you're not pulling the brakes too hard.
5. Puddle Trouble
Although you may have mudguards on that doesn't mean you have carte blanche to speed through puddles on the road with glee. Whilst on mountain bikes this may be fun, their wide, treaded tyres mean they aren't susceptable to the same hazards a road bike would be.
Puddles can hid potholes, drains or any number of hazards that you would normally avoid - not to mention that you risk soaking yourself through regardless of any mudguards, ruining the rest of the ride.