Sunday, October 09, 2005

Riding in cold weather

A dull, grey weekend, overcast skies, temperature in the 50s...perfect for testing my cold weather riding gear in preparation for the Fall Colors trip next weekend! On Saturday, I attached the inner lining to my leather jacket and went for a ride on E. Miami River Rd. I immediately realized that my jeans offered very little protection from the cold, and the thin socks I was wearing didn't help much either. The jacket fared better, keeping out most of the wind. I also had 2 layers on underneath the jacket, which probably helped. However, my full-finger gloves are too short to cover the jacket sleeve and I could feel a cold draft sneaking up my arms. At 55mph on a motorcycle, 50°F feels like 40°F after factoring in wind-chill, so I was definitely under-equipped. After about 2 hours of riding, I decided to head back home, take a hot shower and go shopping for some thermals.

At Wal-Mart, I found heavy-duty men's thermals in Sporting Goods, with all the hunting and camping equipment. I also bought a pair of heavy woolen socks. I wanted to get thin neoprene or silk glove liners but couldn't find any there. Sunday was more of the same weather but I felt much better equipped, with the woolen socks, a layer of thermals underneath my usual riding clothes and an extra t-shirt. I went for a short ride on KY route 8 along the river and it wasn't bad at all. No, I wasn't warm and toasty (for that I'd have to get a heated vest and grips!) but I wasn't uncomfortably cold either. I'm hoping to find glove liners this week to take care of the problem with air going up the jacket sleeve.

I think I'm all set for the trip next weekend. I installed the sissy-bar and luggage rack on the bike (pictures soon!) and the motorcycle luggage looks good, though I haven't tried strapping it onto the bike yet. Hopefully the leaves will turn this week. And I'm prepared for some cold weather riding but I won't be complaining if the temperature gets back up in the 60s or 70s!


Anonymous dp said...

For some reason this didn't appear in my feed aggregator. Looking at all the expenses that you've incurred for the fall colors trip, the leaves had BETTER be colorful enough for justification! ;-)

7:07 PM  

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