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Cycling in the rain

The Dutch are known for two things: cycling, and the rain. Those two usually don't go in hand-in-hand. But, life goes on when the rain falls. So how do Amsterdammers move around when the sky is falling? How do you prepare for a rainy bike ride?

Biking with an umbrella?

Not a good idea. Let me sum it up: no vision, gusts of wind and one-hand steering... generally having an umbrella in your hand while the rain is pouring down is a great hassle. Just imagine the busy bike lanes in Amsterdam and add those people holding umbrellas. Not so safe. Trying to hold on to an umbrella while biking leaves you trying to control the umbrella like it’s a kite. With the force of your speed on the bike smooth driving is a struggle. The more high-class storm umbrellas are a little easier to control, but we still wouldn’t recommend it on the bike.

However, if you have a passenger on the back of your bike, you have found your umbrella holder! This person can hold up the umbrella above both of you. Or just you. And you can still control the bike with two arms.

Dress code: rain attire

Category is… full-on rain suit. We're talking pants, jacket, hat, waterproof shoes, you name it! It is quite the fashionable look. The local people in Amsterdam love their trendy rain coats, because even with all the rain alarm indicator apps, you still never really know when precipitation is going to start.
When in the Netherlands, try to have a poncho handy, just in case. It is breathable and easy to put on and you will always be ready to bike in the drizzle or rainstorms. It doesn’t fully cover you like the full rain attire but it does help a lot!

Be more cautious

Same as when you're driving a car in the rain you've got to be more careful too when you're cycling on wet pavement. The roads are slippery and your small wheels will have more struggle trying to get you up right. Be cautious, make your turns a bit bigger and keep more distance from the person driving in front of you.

Extra set of clothes

If you really want to be sure that you're not walking around with wet underpants (from the rainy bikeride) then bring some extra clothes. Top tip: score your outfits at 2 for 1 sales, no one will know that you just crossed the monsoon!

Get into the Dutch mindset

That is: it is always time to bike. You can wait for a bit for the clouds to pass, but you don’t want to waste too much time. Just bite through it, you will get to your dry destination eventually.
When you are complaining that you don’t want to go outside because of the rain, a Dutch person will surely ask you if you are made of sugar. Maybe you are sweet, and you might be made of sugar, but don't let them know. It is always time to bike and when it rains, it is what it is. Sure, the Dutch will also complain about it, but complaining gives us joy.

Biking in the rain on a Fatbike tour

Rain or shine, our guides will ride! Because the weather is unpredictable, it can start or stop within minutes. Usually, but not always, heavy showers don’t last very long. And it is still fun even when it pours. It is a memory that last for life. Our guides are used to the wet weather, some even say that they prefer a rainy ride! The streets are more quiet and the city looks romantic. Fatbike Tours always provides you with a poncho when a sprinkle is predicted.

So, rain or shine, hop on that bike and enjoy the ride!