Fall is arguably the best time of year for bike riding. The air is crisp and cool. The light is stunning. The scenery is gorgeous because of the colourful foliage. While your hands and toes might get a tad cold and you’ll need to pull out the vests and warmers, autumn is undoubtedly awesome for riding bikes. Here are five definitive signs you are doing fall rides right:

You stopped for treats

The assortment of tasty seasonal treats in autumn is staggering. You won’t be able to sample all the pumpkin, apple and harvest baked goods on offer but a sure sign you are doing the season right is that you stopped to enjoy something delightful. Pies, scones, pastries, muffins, tarts and much more are acceptable treats to be enjoyed mid-ride. Don’t worry about the extra calories. Instead, count the added fun factor of taking a leisurely stop and enjoying something delicious.

You layered just right

A side effect of the cooling temperature is that dressing right is a little harder. Gone are the days of just slipping quickly into summer kit. In autumn you need to figure out if both arm and leg warmers are necessary or maybe full leg bib tights and a long sleeve are more appropriate. You might need shoe covers and gloves. There’s more room for overdressing and subsequently overheating or underdressing and ending up cold. When you layer just right, it’s so satisfying. If you have managed to nail the balancing act, it’s a sure sign you are in tune with the season ready to make the most of the beautiful riding conditions.

You enjoyed a seasonal beverage

Apple cider, mulled wine, a crisp beer, hot chocolate or a pumpkin spice late are all perfectly acceptable to be enjoyed mid or post autumn ride. In fact, if you are making space for these delightful beverages, you are doing your fall rides just right. Make a cidery or brewery your mid-ride destination. Take advantage of the seasonal drinks that nurture the soul and make fall such a magical time of year.

Nobody hammered on the front or got dropped

Do you know what fall rides are definitely not for? Hammerfests and aggressive rides that border on racing. You have nothing to prove. The season is over. Riding should be fun and relaxed. You don’t need to show off your form or prove you’re the fittest on the ride because most people are taking it a little easier and maybe a tad burnt out from intense riding. If you did a ride and the group stayed together. nobody got dropped and nobody had to dig so deep they bonked, then you are doing it right. Enjoy the chit-chat as your ride at a conversational pace admiring the foliage and anticipating your mid-ride stop.

You took photos of the fall foliage

Know what’s better than driving out to the countryside to take a selfie in front of a fire red or bright yellow tree? Riding your bike on quiet roads where the falling leaves gently blow across the road. The sunlight passes through dappled leaves, the light is stunning. Your friends look on point in their stylish fall attire and you are rolling along at a casual enough pace that you can pull out the phone, say cheese and snap a great shot for the ‘gram. Fall is the time for a perfect bike photo or two. Don’t forget a couple of shots of the tasty beverage and decadent treats from your ride as well. Capturing these memories is definitely a sign you are winning at autumn riding.

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