Winter Cycling Congress 2015

Earlier this February the Dutch city of Leeuwarden hosted the third international Winter Cycling Congress. Delegates of many countries gathered to talk about how you could make cycling in winter possible and even attractive. The first two editions of the congress were held in Oulu (Finland) and Winnipeg (Canada) that the Dutch press described as “real” winter countries. Leeuwarden is the capital of Friesland (or Fryslân in their official language Frisian), which means “Freeze land” and it is the province most associated with winter in the Netherlands. The province is famous for the Eleven cities ice skating tour. Unfortunately that tour can only be held in severe winters and that has been a very long time. The last edition took place in 1997.

Yours truly presenting at the Winter Cycling Congress in Leeuwarden. Picture: Herbert Tiemens.

The congress organisers had asked me to do a presentation. I chose to give an overview of why I think cycling in winter in the Netherlands is very possible. It was a two part presentation with Herbert Tiemens of the Province of Utrecht. After my overview he went deeper into some aspects of the story from the perspective of (local) governments. For this blog, I have turned my part of the presentation into a video that can be seen on its own. So even though you did not visit the Winter Congress you can still see and hear what I had to say.

My presentation as a video

This is a quick and general overview that touches on a lot of subjects that I previously wrote about on my blog. I will give you links to where you can find more about these subjects.

Rush hour

The rush hour videos from the first three slides can be found here. Perfect weather, rain, snow. And rush hour is also a tag on my blog.


The Bicycle description came mostly from the blog post. Two Dutch everyday bicycles

Home side parking

More information on home side parking can be found in the post: parking your bike at home. It is also a tag.

End of trip bicycle parking

I wrote a lot about bicycle parking at the destination side. There is a tag to find all these posts.


The junction design that I show in the presentation is described best in this post.

The rest of the array of types of junctions is best described here.

More information on the topic “Separate where needed / mix where possible”.

And more on the categorisation of the streets.

All about transitions from one type of infrastructure to the other.

Winter conditions

Darkness: The video and daylight time picture I used come from this post: Rush hour in the dark. More darkness.

Rain: All about rain.

Ice/Snow: all the posts tagged with snow.

Clearing streets

The information about clearing the roads from snow and ice came from two posts. One where I visited the Department of Public Works that organizes the road clearing in my home town. And one where I show the snow clearing vehicle in action.

The result of all that work is best seen in the post where I compare summer and winter conditions.


In next week’s post I will show you more about the Winter Cycling Congress and in a later post about my visit to Leeuwarden in the far north of our country.

3 thoughts on “Winter Cycling Congress 2015

  1. Mark have you ever been injured on a bicycle. I know you have not been killed while riding, so that is good. I cycled on some black ice that was right under the snow, because someone in the municipal government thought it was a good idea not to blade residential streets to asphalt level, they only plow to 5 cm.

  2. Even awesome would say that video is awesome. If you ever produce a better one I will be very surprised (though I’d thought that before!)

    Many, many thanks.

  3. Fantastic presentation with humorous touches, like the one at the very end. This is a great instructional video that highlights the importance of reliable, well thought out infrastructure.

    Thanks for sharing!

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