Cold? Hey, move north woman, move north!
It was a BEAUTIFUL day for a ride here today and I couldn't resist. Booked the afternoon off work and took off. It was -10 celcius, so I guess that's still warmer than what you had today (about 13 Fahrenheit). About 8 inches of snow on the ground and sunny with a bit of a wind. My girl was so excited to be out there, all she wanted to do was run. And run she did -- through the bush trail, jumping the little branches and ditches in the way. What a riot. We never do that. I had to spend another 20 minutes drying her when we got back because she just wouldn't settle down. At a walk, she was still all worked up. It was great!
I have all my special winter gear for when it gets truly cold here, but after about -20 I tend to not ride so much. Today I took a saddle for the last 2/3rds of the ride, but generally this time of year I switch to bareback because it's warmer :) Buy heat packs. You can get them for your hands, feet and toes. When it's really cold, I'll use the toe ones and keep a couple of hand ones in my pocket to use where/when needed.
Vidaloco -- thanks for mentioning the Raynaud's . I have that too, though I've never been officially diagnosed. It started back in my early 20's with just one finger. Now it's almost all of them. This year is the worst yet. One day I quite literally couldn't feel anything in a few of my fingers from the tip to the 2nd joint down. That kind of scared me; wondering how long my fingers can be in that state without tissue dying... So, I will be avoiding all leather gloves except for city things like work and shopping. It's wool gloves or a pair of mitts all the way from here on in. Funny thing is, that it doesn't have to be the cold to get my fingers acting up. They just do that sometimes, but the worst is the cold or lack of movement, I think.