Watching the rain come down, Wreck-Free Sunday post

I actually had to get a ride to church this morning. After riding in the rain last night coming home from the RPG group my rain gear was soaked through especially my shoes which are still damp after standing in front of the heater having hot air blown over them for 2 hours, and wearing them for 4 more hours today. I don’t mind being wet as long as I’m not cold, and I don’t mind being cold, as long as I’m not wet. but if I had gone out on my bike today I would have been cold and wet, which I don’t like at all. I don’t know what it is but the combination of being both cold and wet just really makes me miserable.

Another thing I have to worry about when it rains is the reduced visibility when it rains. I have a blinky tail light that was glued to the back of the bucket pannier brackets, but the wet weather caused the glue to fail and the light was just barely dangling off the bracket by a thread of the glue when I got home from the RPG game, but I have already been working on a brighter light that will bolt to that bucket pannier bracket. I’ll tell you what it is after I have had a few miles of testing to make sure it works as intended, but I can say it’s a variation on the Honkin’ Huge Tailighttm riff, taking a light that was made for motor vehicle use and applying 12V battery power to it and mounting it on the back of a bicycle, but this one will be just for Blue instead of trying to make something that everyone could use like the original Honkin’ Huge Taillighttm.

As the saying goes, there’s no such thing as bad weather, just a bad choice in clothes. Well I have discovered that the rain gear I bought won’t work for the 7 mile round trip to church twice in one day. I’m sure the riders in the Pacific NW of this country or in the UK have a much better solution that I have been able to buy here in TX where most people just don’t ride in the rain. What I have been using has been the Performance vented vinyl rain jacket which works for one round trip to church, and the vinyl coated fabric rain pants that were discontinued a few years back that work by are too tight through the thighs when I had the right waist size, some waterproof Rocky branded Goretex oversocks that I have had so long I’m no longer sure where I bought them, and a pair of water-resistant gloves that are likewise only good for one round trip to church. Some of this stuff works and always has, like the oversocks. Some of it works when I got it but no longer works now, like the gloves. And some of the stuff was a bad choice of clothing for anything except emergency use, like the vinyl rain jacket. Of this equipment everything except the gloves was bought mail-order, the gloves were not initially intended as rain gear on my part but pressed into that service based on claims of water resistance.

Aside from the clothing issues riding in the rain is not too bad, I kind of like it. There’s a kind of joy in splashing through puddles and riding in the mud when the fenders do their jobs and keep the water and mud away from me, it makes me feel like a kid again only without the “issues” of acting like a kid as an adult. Like nearly everything else about riding a bike, it’s a stress reliever.

PSA, Opus

3 responses to “Watching the rain come down, Wreck-Free Sunday post

  1. As a rider in the pacific northwest, the answer is wool; keeps you warm, even when wet, and you can shake most of the water off, allowing it to dry faster. It’s good when camping in freezing temps for over a month as part of Occupy Bellingham, as well. An outer layer of wool…Bob’s your uncle.

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  2. I was offered a ride home (and the longbike might even have fit in the man’s van) from church… but it was my first trip of the day, it was only drizzling, and yes, it’s *fun.* Friday a fellow called me “dedicated,” walking out wiht my layers from work… I reminded him that people go skiing for fun, all the time, and nobody thinks it’s “dedicated,” and biking is more fun. Now that I’ve got the tree and wreath up, it’ll be even more fun 🙂

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  3. Oh… and I inherited a Gore-tex jacket that really does the job, especially since it’s a little too big so I can layer madly beneath it. Sierra Trading Post had smart-tex pants at $9.00 on one of their daily deals, so I bought two pairs (on the grounds that if they were naught but ponchos, it was still worth the price). They are not quite as waterproof, and they’ve torn in a few places, but as long as I put the wet spots by the by the warmest parts of the computer at work, theyhh’re dry by the time I leave.

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