Fitted my newly purchased studded snow tyres - Schwalbe Marathon Winters - the other day and these are my first impressions.
|Schwalbe Marathon Winter Tyres|
The tyres were easy to fit by hand over the rims and didn't require gloves for protection. The studs are flat ended carbide rods and are not sharp at all. I've covered about 26 miles since - had one return trip to work in a thin covering of snow and ice and today 18 miles to/from south Manchester (to see a secondhand bike I'm thinking of getting but that is another post to be hopefully). This last trip was mainly on clear gritted roads with some banked slush in the cycle lanes which I took care to avoid as well as a mile or so along national cycle route 6 covered in compacted snow.
It was good to be able to compare handling in both snowy and clear conditions. The tyres handle pretty well on the tarmac, although they are quite noisy and there is a little bit of vibration through the handlebars. The ride remains comfortable however and there is no noticeable drop in speed compared to my normal Schwalbe Marathon Supremes. On the snow/ice the ride is grippy and assured and while I still took it easy, I'm sure as I gain in confidence with them I'll be back to cycling almost as if the road was clear - almost!
|National Route 6 crossing the M60|
I'm happy I bought them as I'll be able to get to work whatever the weather. I know some committed cycle commuters are making alternative arrangements for their commute while the roads are snow and ice covered but I would just miss my cycle fix too much for that.