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  1. #1
    Erect member since 1953 cccorlew's Avatar
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    A double in the rain. Advice?

    Darn it all. I'm doing the Solvang Double in Century few days and the weather prediction says 50% chance of rain. Darn it all.
    I've done doubles in well over 100 degrees, and in the cold, but not in the rain.

    I have rain pants and a rain jacket from my daily bike commute which I guess I'll haul along. I'll have a tail light, and a light on my helmet too.

    But other than that, I'm without a clue. I'm looking for rain survival advice on this long ride.

    Thanks
    WANTED: Not a darn thing. I've got it all. Life is good.
    Website at curtis.corlew.com —— Bicycle blog at ccorlew.blogspot.com

  2. #2
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    My advice would be, don't try to stay dry, because you won't, you will just get wet from sweat. Get some nice wool products which will keep you warm even when wet.

  3. #3
    Erect member since 1953 cccorlew's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daven1986 View Post
    Get some nice wool products which will keep you warm even when wet.
    My wife is a big wool fan. I have wool "Kneekers," (knee warmers from DeFeet) wool socks and glove liners. She "made" me buy a wool base layer last night. (on sale and still not cheap!) I hope that's enough. My bibs and jersey are lycra. I've never believed all the wool hype myself, but I do what she says.
    WANTED: Not a darn thing. I've got it all. Life is good.
    Website at curtis.corlew.com —— Bicycle blog at ccorlew.blogspot.com

  4. #4
    Dharma Dog lhbernhardt's Avatar
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    Well, they say about Arizona, "it's a DRY heat," so for SouCal, I would think it would be "a WARM rain?" It's not the getting wet that's the problem, it's the getting cold. Unfortunately, wet usually leads to cold. So here is some advice from the rainy Pac NW:

    Lose the rain pants. You don't notice the wet on your legs. And they'll make you too warm.
    Wear booties over the shoes. They won't keep the shoes & socks dry, but they will keep your feet warm. Wear the booties UNDER the bottom of the tights.
    Your feet will take longer to get wet if you have a front fender (or race blade) with a MUD FLAP.
    Of course, you'll have a rear fender to keep the rain off your back, of course. With a long courtesy mudflap for those sitting on your wheel (Pac NW riders tend to get really ticked off at those without rear mudflaps!)
    If it's cold, wear a wool jersey underneath the rain jacket. If it's REALLY cold, wear two jerseys underneath the rain jacket, one of them wool.
    Wear a REALLY GOOD rain jacket, like a Showers Pass Elite. And play with the vent zippers. You'll get just as wet from sweat on the inside as from rain on the outside.
    Take extra gloves. My hands tend to get really cold, so I take maybe three pairs of gloves (two in my jersey pockets) for when each pair get soaked. But this is not so important if it's a warm rain.
    Don't stand around at the food stops.
    Wear a cap underneath your helmet. Heat escapes from your head.
    That's all I can think of for now.

    Luis

  5. #5
    Erect member since 1953 cccorlew's Avatar
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    Thanks! Though weather will be cold, at least to me. Under 40 at the start, highs of 55 or so.
    I like your advice, especially the extra gloves. I hate cold hands.
    WANTED: Not a darn thing. I've got it all. Life is good.
    Website at curtis.corlew.com —— Bicycle blog at ccorlew.blogspot.com

  6. #6
    Senior Member Homeyba's Avatar
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    Everytime I've ridden the Solvang double I've gotten rained on, hailed on, tornado'd on and every other kind of weathered on. Look on the bright side there is only a 60% change of rain on Saturday and right now it isn't supposed to start until after 6pm. If you are lucky it'll hold off till Sunday. Solvang is a really easy and fast course. There is generally a lot of people who ride it so there is plenty of opportunity to ride in groups. I know people who finish in less than 9hrs. if you ride faster there is a better chance you'll outrun the rain.
    It doesn't get harder, you just go slower.

  7. #7
    Randomhead
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    Last year's 600k featured a lot of rain. We hit a thunderstorm, rode out of it, and then rode back into it. I thought about stopping to put on rain gear, but I am not sure it would have helped me much. I was glad for my fenders on that ride, but I really don't mind getting wet.

  8. #8
    Family, Health, Cycling Lanceoldstrong's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Homeyba View Post
    Everytime I've ridden the Solvang double I've gotten rained on, hailed on, tornado'd on and every other kind of weathered on. Look on the bright side there is only a 60% change of rain on Saturday and right now it isn't supposed to start until after 6pm. If you are lucky it'll hold off till Sunday. Solvang is a really easy and fast course. There is generally a lot of people who ride it so there is plenty of opportunity to ride in groups. I know people who finish in less than 9hrs. if you ride faster there is a better chance you'll outrun the rain.
    He is riding with this here big engine as his chief lieutenant and cccorlew has interval trained himself to a razors edge this early year.
    We are gonna be fine.
    In Escendo Est Verum

  9. #9
    Senior Member Homeyba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lanceoldstrong View Post
    He is riding with this here big engine as his chief lieutenant and cccorlew has interval trained himself to a razors edge this early year.
    We are gonna be fine.
    Well, if he's riding with you I don't see a problem. Hey, how come you didn't invite me!!
    It doesn't get harder, you just go slower.

  10. #10
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    Take a couple of rags to wipe the grit off your chain. You may want to give the drive train a spray from your waterbottle. Use a lube that will hold up in the wet.

  11. #11
    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    High of 55. That's a nice warm March day for this PNW guy. My standard spring rando outfit is a Craft long sleeve undershirt, which I got before there were a million of them. The warm sort, but not the full winter. A short-sleeve summer jersey, the warmest you have. Arm warmers. A non-waterproof microfiber rain jacket, like the cheap Performance ones. Or fancy, whatever. Then it's hard to say about the legs. I'd probably go with PI tights with a pad. Another good choice would be warmish summer shorts and leg warmers, depending on how warm you ride. Shorts and tights take up a lot of room when you take the tights off. Definitely booties and at least 2 pr. of gloves. Wool socks. I like to bring an extra pair of those, too. If it's raining at the start, I take two grocery vegetable bags, cut the bottoms off, and put them over my shoes and up onto my bare legs. The booties go over them, then the tights outside. The plastic bags keep the rain from running down your legs into your shoes. If it's not raining, they make your feet colder, though. ++ on the fenders with mudflaps. The front fender mudflap should come within 2" of the pavement.

    I always lay out everything I own and make the final decision in the morning. A lot depends on your average watts. If you put out a lot, less clothes. Less watts, more clothes. Sounds like you belong in the less clothes category.

    Oh - I forgot - bring a vest, too. The fast boys I used to ride with wouldn't even bring the rain jacket, just the undershirt, arm warmers, and a vest.
    Last edited by Carbonfiberboy; 03-21-12 at 10:07 AM.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Richard Cranium's Avatar
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    Yeah don't forget to "lube everything." Even if you have been successful and not needed any butt care in the past - I would pack plenty of gel or lotion. Rain and wetness can make body parts chafe much more quickly than expected.

    Stay off the "shiny" parts of the roads......
    Sorry about my comments - I thought you wanted honest feedback.
    2003 Lemond Wayzata - 2002 LeMond Malliot Jeune

  13. #13
    www.ocrebels.com Rick@OCRR's Avatar
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    Yes Richard,

    I agree. I use Bag Balm but I bring extra for when/if it rains a lot so I can re-apply.

    I haven't ridden with Curtis lately, but from what I hear (from LanceOldStrong) he's probably much faster now. I haven't ridden with Richard Cranuim lately either, but he used to be really fast . . . probably still is.

    See you in Solvang Curtis!

    Rick / OCRR

  14. #14
    Hooked On Quack
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    Curtis,
    Like Homeyba, I've ridden Solvang in just about every conceivable weather condition. On one it was raining before I started and it was STILL raining when I got back to the barn, FIE! In that kind of weather I would agree with those who say stay away from the rain pants because they'll make you overheat; ditto for rain jackets. I've always used arm warmers and a wind vest in those conditions so that I can vent as necessary. Forget keeping dry; it ain't gonna happen. I've never had an issue with cold fingers, but cold on my toes is another situation altogether [some light frost bite when I was a wee nipper back in upstate NY playing hockey on well frozen fire ponds!]. For toe protection, I've always used a square of Saran Wrap, pulled over my toes, inside the shoe. I'm only looking for an air dam to keep wind chill away. Since the back of the foot isn't covered, there's adequate venting. I've also stashed one of those plastic grocery bags in my pocket to be used as a chest protector, just in case the vest isn't enough. I started developing these ideas during those "winter" east bay training rides; fog, chill, rain, mist; you know the drill...

    Good luck on the ride. I, on the other hand, will be suffering with 70° temps, light breezes and clear skies while I do my brevιt over in AZ. Oh darn....
    YMMV
    -dg
    The thing about the cold is that you can never tell how cold it is
    from looking out a kitchen window. You have to dress up, get out
    training and when you come back, you then know how cold it is.
    -- Sean Kelly

  15. #15
    Senior Member Pedal Wench's Avatar
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    I find it really, really nice to have a cycling cap with a brim under my helmet to keep the rain out of my eyes. The constant squinting as rain drips gets real old, real fast even with sunglasses.

  16. #16
    Bicycle Lifestyle AsanaCycles's Avatar
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    as luck had it, no rain!

  17. #17
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    Bring a couple of plastic grocery bags and put them on your feet if they start to get wet. Use wool socks if you can. The plastic bags will insulate the warmth generated from your body and keep you warm and somewhat dry. Not the best fashion wise, but it works!

  18. #18
    Senior Member Homeyba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AsanaCycles View Post
    as luck had it, no rain!
    Yep, it was a beautiful day! A little wind and cool but nice, none the less.
    It doesn't get harder, you just go slower.

  19. #19
    Erect member since 1953 cccorlew's Avatar
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    No rain... but 20 mph headwinds with higher gusts. (really, I checked weather history on Weather Underground)
    No wind the first 100 miles, which took LanceOldStrong and I six hours, and the second 100? 10 flippin' hours. It was astounding.
    Or, the first 104 miles we averaged 17.4, that rest 11.7. I was thrilled to live through it, and make the time cut off.
    WANTED: Not a darn thing. I've got it all. Life is good.
    Website at curtis.corlew.com —— Bicycle blog at ccorlew.blogspot.com

  20. #20
    Senior Member Homeyba's Avatar
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    Normally, you'd have tail winds on the second half of the Solvang but when we have storms the wind switches directions and it turns into headwinds. It was a pretty nice day though, wasn't it? Lots of fun!
    It doesn't get harder, you just go slower.

  21. #21
    www.ocrebels.com Rick@OCRR's Avatar
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    Yes, it was a nice day with no rain and plenty of sunshine, but those winds on the way back were brutal. That said, I was still happy not to have rain.

    Here are my Garmin Stats from the Solvang Double:

    http://connect.garmin.com/activity/161542621

    Rick / OCRR

  22. #22
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    I managed to finish Solvang. It was an interesting contrast of tailwinds on the outbound route (average speed of 23.7 mph to the second rest stop at about mile 86, and the first hundred miles in 4 hours 14 minutes), and headwinds on the inbound route from lunch to the finish. I made the mistake of missing a traffic light on the way to Guadalupe and watched the lead group get 3 minutes on me before the light changed. Oh well - I did the last 65 miles solo and lost a bunch of time to them in the strong headwinds. Such is life!

    Going UP the gradual climb towards Morro Bay at 31mph was priceless - Worth the entry fee for just that experience!

  23. #23
    Bicycle Lifestyle AsanaCycles's Avatar
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    no doubt, stooped windy. last year it rained. Not sure which is more difficult. Typical spring time stuff.

  24. #24
    www.ocrebels.com Rick@OCRR's Avatar
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    I wasn't liking the wind, but when I imagine that wind with cold rain added . . . I'm so happy that it didn't rain.

    We got on the road about 5:15AM, got lost in the dark, found our way back on course, made it to lunch by 11:30AM, then battled the wind until the finish at 9:07 approx. Will find out for sure when the Planet Ultra results are posted.

    I know I made it under the time limit, and a know quite a few others that didn't. Have to see if they extend the time limit after considering the circumstances. There were certainly times when it was less than "fun" but overall I'm glad I survived the challenge.

    Rick / OCRR

  25. #25
    Bicycle Lifestyle AsanaCycles's Avatar
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    I noticed that little "extension" on your garmin link.

    but honestly, riding in the rain, for many is a big deal.
    In my experience its mostly psychological. however, there is no screwing around with hypothermia. I'm not sure, but I think being wet pulls heat from you about 25% faster. my typical strategy is decent base layer, i.e. wool, and a Showers Pass Elite jacket. a helmet cover, waterproof cycling cap, hood, or whatever you like to keep water off your head.

    gloves, I typically just suck it up and wear black rubber gloves from the hardware store, maybe use a thin glove liner inside... maybe.
    shoes, I use some sort of bootie like Endura, or Pearl Izumi, with wool socks.

    last year it rained for just about the whole time, at least it wasn't too cold.

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