When I started biking in the mid ‘90’s, fatbikes didn’t exist. The group of people I rode with on the road didn’t have the gear you need to ride in cold much below 20 degrees. For years the winter meant the offseason. Sure, I might do the occasional outdoor ride when the weather was decent, but for the most part, after the last races of the fall in October, bike-riding (in those days riding meant training for races) was a low-key affair. Things started to ramp up and get serious in February or March but there was a very defined offseason that lasted for months.
In the winter of ‘03-’04 I was living in Fairbanks, Alaska where, if you were to put biking aside for the offseason you would hardly bike from September to May. I didn’t want to do that and fell in with a small group of dedicated winter bikers for which an offseason didn’t exist.