Every year in September when weather tends to become less stable I ready my bike for winter season.
I put the fenders back on. SKS Longboards have proven to be reliable and up for the job. And I think they look good as well.
My tire size shrinks since I barely go deep into the woods for trails anymore. The earth gets so damp that you basically spend about 3 x the time cleaning your bike, than riding it. This year I put on the 35s Matthias gave me. Really like them. They are wide enough to be comfortable and capable on hard packed gravel. That keeps my commuting route variety at high levels. I am constantly adding my favorite ones here for a colleague: https://www.komoot.de/collection/1265464/-commute-bruchsal-karlsruhe
And the lights go on in permanent setup. The Lezyne 400XL has been a super light. When I am expecting a late return I take the 800XL with me. That has got me home when it literally was pitch black for my 1 hour ride. I haven’t been happy or lucky with my rear lights so far. Battery life has been disappointing from the Sigmas. Maybe I’ll try the Lezyne ones for that as well this year.
And last and probably most important is clothing. Several layers is key to keeping warm in the morning with 2-6 degree Celsius and being able to take some of it off for the 14-18 on return. Extremely happy with the stuff from Gore! Mixed with good old Decathlon stuff pricing remains decent overall. Really nice so far was the latest addition: GripGrab overshoes. They keep my feet mostly warm and less wet. After 40 minutes in pouring rain I have found it doesn’t matter what you are wearing. You will be wet everywhere. It’s all about staying warm then.
But the weather is much better than you would think. On average it is surprising how often you will enjoy beautiful sun even way into November. Some impressions from my daily commutes.