Drive My Bike


Only 7 Degrees, But What A Difference!
October 10, 2008, 6:19 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Today’s ride was the coldest yet. My previous record for coldest commute was 41 degrees (F) a couple of weeks ago, and today the temperature was only 7 degrees colder, at 34 (F), but wow… this morning’s ride was COLD!

Thermometer34

Our first real winter weather of the season is rolling in, and it is supposed to be cold and snowy all weekend. I was excited about this last night because I was anxious to try out some of the changes I made to my cold weather gear based on that ride a couple of weeks ago. I decided that I would add some long thermals as a base layer on my legs, since I just had shorts and bare skin last time. In addition, I know that I said I didn’t like beanies, but I found a lightweight Novara beanie at REI that had some Thinsulate type of material around the ears, but was thin enough to comfortably wear under my helmet, so I decided to try that. My wife and kids cracked up when I put it on because it sort of gives that gangster look. I figure that just allows me to keep up my rebellious bike commuter image.

What were the results of this new outfit? I was cold for the first mile or so, but I figured that was to be expected. My core was generally warm, so that wasn’t a problem. My arms were a bit cold, and it took a while for my hands to warm up, but they did eventually. The biggest problem was my face. My head was hot, and my ears were okay, but my face got so cold that it was almost painful. I think my face finally started to acclimate just about the time I got to the office. When I got in the building and started to cool down the rush of blood to my head was so strong that it almost gave me a headache.

Boy, I think this winter riding is great! 🙂

Seriously, it is a fun adventure, and I’ll continue tweaking things until I get the right formula. Based on what I’ve read from other winter bike commuters it seems like everyone is different, and it takes a little while to get things figured out. I’ve read that others have kept a log of their winter riding, noting their outfit for the day and how well it performed. I’m going to do that as well, and will share that info with you as it develops.

Ride safe and stay warm out there.

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4 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Glad to hear you are still out there. the weather here is mild. I must admit that I need to figure out how to do winter. I’ll be watching what you do. Post often okay?

Comment by tom

If the beanie is too hot try a helmet cover. To keep my face warm I use a black neoprene half mask. If you want to really look gangster you can buy a skull mask on Amazon. 🙂

I also use Under Armour Coldgear as my base layer along with one of their jerseys.

Comment by Bob

Oh wow, those skull masks are too cool. I almost bought one… or the one with the flames. I was imagining waiting at a stop light with one of those on as I greeted the drivers around me. LOL 🙂

Instead I settled on a fleece face mask/neck gaiter. We’ll see how that works.

Comment by Scott

I use ear toasties to keep my ears warm without my head getting too hot. They fit over my helmet straps so I don’t get headband-hair either 🙂
I got them here: http://www.matelmakes.etsy.com

Comment by Kat




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