Anyone who’s read the blog lately knows its been cold up here in Seattle. Teens and 20s cold. For us, that’s almost as cold as it ever gets around here. People far and wide are complaining about it. The good thing is that the sun is shining. These have been some of the brightest and clearest days of the year. Though it makes you think you are in the refrigerator and someone left the light on!
Yesterday in Starbucks I heard someone ask a guy if he was cold. The man had a very interesting reply. He said, “Cold is only felt by those that just don’t dress for the weather.” And he’s right. In the summer, when it’s at its hottest, you can only take of SO much in the way of clothing. Shoot, there are days you could be walking around stark naked, and you’d still be sweltering!
Cold, you can always put on another layer, or a hat, or warmer gloves or…. And then it hit me. I was using the cold as an excuse to not ride…. Now, when the cold snap first hit, there was still moisture on the ground. Cold and wet makes ice, and ice and bikes (at least mine) do NOT mix. But as the weeks of sunny weather have gone on, and the air has been very dry (we haven’t even had to scrape the windshields) the dampness is gone. Aside from a spilled latte, there’s been no ice to worry about.
So it was time to get off my butt! Break out the cold weather gear and hit the road. At REI I picked up wool bike socks, this plus the shoe covers would keep the feet warm. The legs, I raided my old hiking gear and broke out insulated soft shell pants. Warm, cuts the wind, but sadly, no butt padding. (but its only 17 miles home).
The top was a long sleeve jersey, a thin polypro jersey on top of it, a wind breaker vest and then my Orange Mountain Hardwear coat!
I’ve patched it, and every now and then, my wide makes me wash it, but it never lets me down!
On the head i went big with a balaclava, topped with a helmet and helmet cover. The gloves are the old reliable REI brand I got for $5 at the REI garage sale years ago.
I left at 330, with the temp at 30 deg, and the sun going down. It was a GREAT ride! The trail was wide open, no rain, no wind, and most importantly, I was warm. Riding cooled me off just enough to be comfy. The trail was in great shape! The only ice was easily spotted and easier to avoid. I thoroughly enjoyed it!
By the time I started up the hill to the house, my toes were a little cold, but otherwise, I had miles left in me.
Its a good thing I sucked it up, because later tonight we are supposed to have freezing rain. That is NOT a good time to ride. That, combined with other things this week, may prevent me from riding home again. But there is always next week!
it was a great way, as always, to wrap up the day and the man from Starbucks was correct. With the right close, you won’t feel the cold!