General Cycling Discussion - When are wind strengths dangerous?
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I was going for a ride today, but winds are gusting up to 30 knots.
This makes for very unpleasant riding (especially headwinds) so I wimped.
But it raises the question...when is wind speed dangerous to ride in, or just plain stupid... I mean if you can onle progress at say walking speed, what's the point...? :eek:
07-09-05, 07:14 PM
When you see a wicked witch get flattened by a house, it's time to seek shelter.
07-09-05, 07:28 PM
I've found 30mph side winds will move me around a bit, but not dangerously. We normally only see winds in excess of that during storms.
Headwind: I'll give up when I can't go faster than walking pace in full drops and in the smallest ring and largest cog.
Tailwind: I'll give up when I'm airborne.
Crosswind: Around 45mph sustained and 30mph gusting. (It's easier to predictably lean into a cross wind than be thrown around by gusts).
The day I hit a 100mph tailwind is the day I combine cycling and having an orgasm into the same activity, as well as the day I have to hitch a ride back home. What would be nice is if a mini-hurricane can pass by with 100mph winds going in a circle. Then I can just ride in a circle and end up back home with the same tailwind.
07-09-05, 08:11 PM
depends on how the roads are set up in your area
07-09-05, 08:15 PM
The tailwinds I hate are ones that are blowing the same speed you're going. Say you're pedalling your ass off going 25MPH, and you have a 25MPH tailwind. You sweat, but you have no relative air movement to blow it off and cool you down.
If you are on a road bike ie. drop bars I have ridden with branches being blown out of trees and mtb'ers walking their bikes the side gusts can tend to pull the bike out from under you (having read this I may not be completely sane). On a mtb a lot lower wind speed, the same for choppers, recumbent trikes there is no maximum wind speed that I have found yet (and I live in the roaring forties!).
07-09-05, 10:33 PM
When im on my commute I have to ride no matter what so I guess any wind speed I will have to suffer with.
07-09-05, 11:24 PM
Where I live the winds blow constantly (yes it sucks) if I were to wait for a day when there is no wind I would ride about 2 days a year. After a while you get used to it. The only time the wind scares me is when I go over a freeway overpass and there is no fence. The wind blows at an angle as if it is going to blow me over the retaining wall and onto the freeway. Other than that I usually try to end my ride so I have a tail wind. Good luck, get out there and ride.
Winds are dangerous when they reach tornado or hurricane status.
Take a look at the Fujita scale:
F0 -- Gale tornado -- 40-72 mph -- Some damage to chimneys; breaks branches off trees; pushes over shallow-rooted trees; damages sign boards.
Or the Beaufort Wind Scale:
7 -- 32-38 -- Near Gale -- Whole trees in motion; inconvenience felt when walking against the wind.
8 -- 39-46 -- Gale -- Breaks twigs off trees; generally impedes progress.
9 -- 47-54 -- Severe Gale -- Slight structural damage occurs (chimney-pots and slates removed).
You can still ride up around 50 mph ... it's just a quite slow going.
07-10-05, 12:49 AM
It's dangerous when passing vehicles disturb the air enough to make you lose control of your bike.
Or when it's gusting that you can't hold a straight line.
Constant wind isn't so dangerous so long as nothing big is blown around. I've tried riding into constant 60kph winds. I couldn't do it, but it wasn't dangerous, just frustrating.
I've tried riding a bike into 100+kph gusts. That was stupid alright- the first gust flipped the bike over and sent me tumbling down the road. My only defense is that I didn't realise how strong the wind was getting, and I took shelter after that.
This was in Patagonia, kind of a windy place.
I'm used to near-constant winds as well.
That's the price you pay for living right at the coast.
It's extremely rare to see wind speeds less than 3-4 m/s (6-8 kts), and on a typical day, it's more like 5-7 m/s (10-15 kts).
07-10-05, 10:54 AM
Only when they move my 280 pounds of rider and bike combined to directions I don't want to go. IT HAS HAPPENED! A recent thunderstorm brought gusts sufficient to get me off the bike. I walk when it gets that bad.
07-10-05, 07:49 PM
30 MPH crosswind from the ditch side & you have a blowout. If your not paying enough attention you could end up out by the center line.
Happened to me once (don't tell the wife).
When it knocks you over. Happened to me back in the 80's in a road race in central Maine. A particularily nasty steep climb dumped everyone onto a summit with no cover and many people were blown over as they topped that climb. Me included. Pretty embarrassing too as there was a sizable group of spectators at the top.
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